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84-year-old shipwreck discovered near Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula

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Posted at 12:47 PM, Feb 12, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-12 15:23:50-05

KEWEENAW, Mich. (WXYZ) — The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS) and shipwreck researcher Dan Fountain have announced the discovery of the Arlington, a 244-foot bulk carrier that went missing nearly 84 years ago while sailing on Lake Superior.

Courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS)

“On April 30th, 1940, the Arlington left Port Arthur, Ontario fully loaded with wheat en route Owen Sound, Ontario. She was under command of Captain Frederick “Tatey Bug” Burke, a seasoned veteran of the lakes,” GLSHS said. “Dense fog greeted the Arlington and a larger freighter, the Collingwood, as they made their way across Lake Superior. As the day turned to night the fog turned into a storm and battered both ships. The Arlington started to take on water.”

Captain Burke was able to successfully take control of the ship, but around 4:30 a.m. on May 1, the Arlington began to sink.

Courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS)

The entire crew decided to abandon the ship and everyone, except Captain Burke “made it to the safety of the Collingwood,” GLSHS said.

Courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS)

Found in over 600 feet of water about 35 miles north of Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan, the Arlington was first identified by Fountain as an anomaly through the use of marine sonic technology side-scan sonar in 2023.

Courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS)

“It’s exciting to solve just one more of Lake Superior’s many mysteries,” said Fountain. “Finding Arlington so far out in the lake. I hope this final chapter in her story can provide some measure of closure to the family of Captain Burke.”

Courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS)