Ship that Disappeared in Lake Michigan Discovered in Perfect Condition 116 Years Later
116 years ago, the John V. Moran steamboat was lost in the depths of Lake Michigan. It had been on its way from Milwaukee to Muskegon when it went down on February 12th, 1899, after its hull was pierced by ice a few days earlier.
The ship was thought to be lost forever… until June 5th, 2015, when the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association team located the John V. Moran during a sonar search.
Incredibly, the John V. Moran steamboat was in almost perfect condition, Craig Rich, a co-director of the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association said:
Not a railing is missing. The mast is standing. The lights are standing. The anchors are in position. There’s even glass still in the windows. The only thing missing from this wreck is the smokestack.
The wreck is apparently one of the best-preserved in the Great Lakes, likely because it sank slowly before reaching its watery grave at 365 feet.
By comparison, according to the Detroit Free Press, some 1,200 of the 2,000 sunken ships in Lake Michigan no longer even exist, because they broke apart when hitting the shore.
About 360 wrecks have been found in the deeper parts of the lake, with more yet to be discovered — though, the John V. Moran has been the most impressive.