100 Years After Ore Boat Disappeared in Lake Superior Storm, Searchers Locate Wreck
Just a few months shy of 100 years after it sank with all hands in a monstrous November storm, it appears that the freighter Henry B. Smith — one of the most sought-after lost wrecks of Lake Superior — has been found.
A group of shipwreck hunters with Northland ties has found a previously undiscovered wreck sitting largely intact amid a spilled load of iron ore in about 535 feet of water offshore from Marquette, Mich., and all evidence points to it being the Smith. Until last month, the 525-foot vessel had not been seen since it and its crew of 25 inadvertently sailed into the brunt of the Great Lakes Storm of 1913.
“It’s the most satisfying find of my shipwreck-hunting career,” said Jerry Eliason of Cloquet, part of the group that has located a number of lost ships in recent years, though perhaps none as significant as the Smith.
“It’s a fantastic find,” said maritime historian Frederick Stonehouse of Marquette, who has written about the long-lost ship. “I’m excited at the opportunity to look at the video and see if we can learn the cause of the wreck, to write the final chapter of the ship.”