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Lake Michigan's Clear Waters Reveals Long-Forgotten Shipwrecks From The 1800s

On April 17, 2015, a Coast Guard aircrew was doing a routine patrol over the Lake Michigan shoreline when they made an amazing discovery. The lake's water is so clear at the time as ice is gone for the season, giving the aircrew the opportunity to snap images of the many shipwrecks visible in the lake's crystal clear waters.

From the sky, the aircrew as able to spot and identify some of the lake's 1,500 sunken hulls.

Among them is the James McBride, a 121-foot brig that ran aground during a storm on October 19, 1857. Her remains lie 5 to 15 feet of water near Sleeping Bear Point.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

According to history, McBride journeyed to the Manitou Islands in mid-October of 1857 carrying a cargo of wood. On October 19, 1857, on her return trip to Chicago, she encountered a gale and was driven ashore near Sleeping Bear Dune.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

The Rising Sun, a 133-foot long wooden streamer that was stranded north of Pyramid Point on October 29, 1917. Her wreckage now rests in 6 to 12 feet of water.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

An unknown wreck captured by the US Coast Guard aircrew from a helicopter during a routine patrol.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

The lake's clear waters reveal two more shipwrecks.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

The unpredictable weather makes Lake Michigan area home to some of the most dangerous waters in the world. A number ships have met the end of their journey here, especially during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

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Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

The normally obscured wreckage are now clearly visible due to the water's unusual transparency which was caused by surface ice melting, waves, wind, and beach erosion. It's incredible that the aircrew was able to take these photographs before plankton and other organisms conceal the ship graveyard once again.

H/t Facebook / U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse CityDaily Mail

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