Two Civil War-era schooners that collided and sank into Lake Michigan more than 140 years ago were found thanks to a diver and maritime history buff looking for shipwrecks.
The Peshtigo – a 161-foot long ship carrying coal – and St. Andrews – about 143 feet long and carrying corn – are believed to have sunk in 1878 after they hit each other between Beaver and Fox islands, northwest of Charlevoix, Michigan.
Marine historian Brendon Baillod told the Associated Press that old news reports said the collision was blamed on confusion in signal torches. He said two of the Peshtigo’s crewmen were lost, while survivors were rescued by another passing schooner.
The shipwrecks were lost to history.