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Lake Huron Shipwrecks

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JohnInKansas 15 Jul 11 - 02:17 PM
GUEST,999 15 Jul 11 - 02:27 PM
Big Mick 15 Jul 11 - 02:30 PM
Beer 15 Jul 11 - 02:38 PM
Charmion 15 Jul 11 - 03:11 PM
Beer 15 Jul 11 - 03:17 PM
Big Mick 15 Jul 11 - 03:49 PM
Waddon Pete 16 Jul 11 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,DonMeixner 16 Jul 11 - 03:45 PM
Joe Offer 16 Jul 11 - 07:09 PM
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Subject: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 02:17 PM

Starting above the line, since several people have shown an interest in Great Lakes Maritime events as material for folklore. It may be moved below as general interest if there's no folkish response in short order.

Long-lost shipwrecks discovered in Lake Huron

'Project Shiphunt' documents remains of ships that went down in 1889 and 1905

msnbc.com staff and news service reports
7/14/2011

PRESQUE ISLE, Mich. — A team of underwater explorers has found two long-lost shipwrecks in northeastern Lake Huron.

Thunder Bay Marine Sanctuary on Wednesday announced the discovery of the schooner M.F. Merrick and the steel freighter Etruria in deep water off Presque Isle.

They were detected during an expedition called "Project Shiphunt," which involved scientists and historians from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration and five high school students from Saginaw, Mich.

Both ships sank after colliding with steamers in dense fog.

The 138-foot-long Merrick went down in 1889. Five crew members were killed. The intact hull was found resting upright on the lake bottom.

The Etruria, which was 414 feet long, sank in 1905 — just three years after it was launched. Today the steamer sits upside down in deep water.

NOAA said the wrecks are being documented in 3-D imagery for the first time. A documentary about the expedition, sponsored by Sony and Intel, is to air Aug. 30 on the Current cable network.

"This research will help us protect the Great Lakes and their rich history for future generations," Jeff Gray, superintendent of Thunder Bay Marine Sanctuary, said in a NOAA news release. "It is also an extraordinary opportunity to inspire the next generation of explorers and introduce them to technology and experiences that could shape their futures."

This report includes information from The Associated Press and NOAA.
© 2011 msnbc.com

There is no indication of any particular historical significance for these two ships, but someone with more familiarity with the maritime history might know something AP/msnbc don't.

There is a brief video of some shots around the Merrick, and an embedded "photo blog" of "10 great and mysterious shipwrecks," or something like that, for those who like pictures.

The news item, unfortunately, doesn't seem to provide a citation for the "original report."

John


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: GUEST,999
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 02:27 PM

Some good overviews in Wikipedia. There are purported to be over 1000 wrecks in the lake.


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Big Mick
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 02:30 PM

John, what a wonderful video!!! Did you see the looks on those young folks faces as that ship appeared out of the murk? Thanks for sharing. Love this.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Beer
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 02:38 PM

Thanks John.
Must send this link to my sister who is working presently in her 32 year on the laker's.
ad.


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 03:11 PM

Here's your folkie connection, coming right up: a disaster song set on Lake Huron! Actually, it's from Stan Rogers posthumous album "From Fresh Water."

Odd that it's not in the DT -- yet.

WHITE SQUALL
by Stan Rogers

From the liner notes: The town of Wiarton (Ontario) is situated at the mouth of one of the deepest Great Lake ports. For years, more than 30% of skippers and mates employed in lake shipping came from this quiet fishing town in the Bruce Peninsula. There are very few families in the town, even now [1983], who have not lost a close relative to the fury of the lakes.

VERSE 1
Now it's just my luck to have the watch, with nothing left to do
But watch the deadly waters glide as we roll north to the 'Soo',
And wonder when they'll turn again and pitch us to the rail
And whirl off one more youngster in the gale.

VERSE 2
The kid was so damned eager. It was all so big and new.
You never had to tell him twice, or find him work to do.
And evenings on the mess deck he was always first to sing,
And show us pictures of the girl he'd wed in spring.

CHORUS:
But I told that kid a hundred times, "Don't take the Lakes for granted.
They go from calm to a hundred knots so fast they seem enchanted."
But tonight some red-eyed Wiarton girl lies staring at the wall,
And her lover's gone into a white squall.

VERSE 3
Now it's a thing that us old-timers know. In a sultry summer calm
There comes a blow from nowhere, and it goes off like a bomb.
And a fifteen-thousand-tonner can be thrown upon her beam
While the gale takes all before it with a scream.

VERSE 4
The kid was on the hatches, lying staring at the sky.
From where I stood I swear I could see tears fall from his eyes.
So I hadn't the heart to tell him that he should be on a line,
Even on a night so warm and fine.

CHORUS:
But I told that kid a hundred times, "Don't take the Lakes for granted.
They go from calm to a hundred knots so fast they seem enchanted."
But tonight some red-eyed Wiarton girl lies staring at the wall,
And her lover's gone into a white squall.

VERSE 5
When it struck, he sat up with a start; I roared to him, "Get down!"
But for all that he could hear, I could as well not made a sound.
So, I clung there to the stanchions, and I felt my face go pale,
As he crawled hand over hand along the rail.

VERSE 6
I could feel her keeling over with the fury of the blow.
I watched the rail go under then, so terrible and slow.
Then, like some great dog she shook herself and roared upright again.
Far overside. I heard him call my name.

CHORUS:
But I told that kid a hundred times, "Don't take the Lakes for granted.
They go from calm to a hundred knots so fast they seem enchanted."
But tonight some red-eyed Wiarton girl lies staring at the wall,
And her lover's gone into a white squall.

VERSE 7
So it's just my luck to have the watch, with nothing left to do
But watch the deadly waters glide as we roll north to the 'Soo',
And wonder when they'll turn again and pitch us to the rail
And whirl off one more youngster in the gale.

CHORUS:
But I told that kid a hundred times, "Don't take the Lakes for granted.
They go from calm to a hundred knots so fast they seem enchanted."
But tonight some red-eyed Wiarton girl lies staring at the wall,
And her lover's gone into a white squall.


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Beer
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 03:17 PM

Great song Charmion.
ad.


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Big Mick
Date: 15 Jul 11 - 03:49 PM

I have been performing it virtually since I first heard it. When I was in the studio with Paul Mills working on a project, he let me hear the remastered version for the "Very Best of Stan Rogers" CD that he was working on with Ariel. Spectacular, and one of my favorites. That CD has been released on the Borealis label and I would highly recommend it to fans (such as myself) of Canadian Folk Music.Borealis is a jewel and leaves me wishing I were officially a Canadian so I could be on that label. I will never forget the night we did Fielding's CD release as a live broadcast on CIUT and streamed over the internet around the world. We did that broadcast in the Borealis office space. So many of the people I admire in our business were on that playbill. What an honor to be in that company.

Great song.....great thread.

All the best,
Mick


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Waddon Pete
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 03:37 PM

I also loved the video taster and wholeheartedly agree that "White Squall" is a powerful song. I have it in my repertoire and it always holds peoples' attention to the very end. It works very well unaccompanied.

Great thread.

Best wishes,

Peter


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: GUEST,DonMeixner
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 03:45 PM

Read Great Lakes Ship Wrecks and Survivals by William Ratigan


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Subject: RE: Lake Huron Shipwrecks
From: Joe Offer
Date: 16 Jul 11 - 07:09 PM

I'd second Don's recommendation of the Ratigan book. Ratigan is a great storyteller, and the book is a fascinating read. I also like Lore of the Lakes, by Dana Thomas Bowen, originally published in 1940.
I think Charley Noble is the one who recommended another book to me: Captain Ernie Hall's Flotsam, Jetsam, and Lagan: From the Seven Seas, The Five Great Lakes, and our Inland Rivers. This book has a good-sized section on the Great Lakes, and includes songs and stories and other folklore.

-Joe-


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