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1894 Lake Huron shipwreck discovered

A 19th-century shipwreck at the bottom of Lake Huron tells a grim story. Behind the impressively preserved remains of the Ironton—a cargo vessel that collided with a grain hauler in 1894—sits an empty lifeboat.

The raft is tethered to the stern, just as it was when it was dragged down by the sinking ship nearly 130 years ago, dooming five of the seven crewmen on board.

After lying on the lakebed undisturbed for more than a century, the shipwreck has been discovered by a group of researchers, confirming its tragic fate, the Associated Press reports. 

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and their partners found the Ironton in 2019, but waited four years to announce the discovery to give the team time to study the wreck.

The frigid waters of the Great Lake kept the vessel in excellent condition.

The group of historians, archaeologists, and technicians worked with Ocean Exploration Trust, an organization founded by oceanographer Robert Ballard, who discovered the RMS Titanic.

They’ve spent the last four years scanning, photographing, and documenting the Lake Huron wreck. 

The deck of the Ironton beneath Lake Huron. / NOAA/ Undersea Vehicles Program UNCW
The deck of the Ironton beneath Lake Huron. / NOAA/ Undersea Vehicles Program UNCW

The Ironton had been sailing for more than two decades when it ran into the 203-foot long wooden freighter named Ohio, tearing a 12-foot hole in its hull.

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The Ohio’s 16 crew members escaped onto rafts before the ship went under, but the men onboard the Ironton weren’t as lucky.

They piled into the lifeboat, but according to the wreck’s two survivors, they failed to untie it before the ship plunged into the lake. The scene discovered in 2019 finally confirms those eyewitness accounts. 

The Ironton’s final resting place remains undisclosed as the team continues its research.

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary is considering sharing the location with the public later this year, with a mooring buoy possibly marking its spot on the lake.

This article is republished from Mental Floss under a Creative Commons license.

Read the original article by Michele Debczak

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Brandon Grimes
Brandon Grimes
Brandon Grimes is a seasoned paranormal journalist known for his relentless pursuit of the unexplained. With an insatiable curiosity and a keen eye for detail, he has dedicated his career to uncovering the mysteries that lie beyond the realms of conventional understanding. Brandon's approach to paranormal journalism is characterized by a healthy blend of skepticism and open-mindedness. He firmly believes in critically examining the evidence, challenging assumptions, and presenting the truth to his readers. His methodical research and commitment to unbiased reporting have earned him the respect of both believers and skeptics alike. Throughout his career, Brandon has traveled to countless haunted locations, delving deep into the dark underbelly of the paranormal world. He has interviewed witnesses, experts, and even those who claim to possess supernatural abilities, always striving to bring forth stories that would otherwise remain hidden in the shadows.

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