Vessel Type: Motor: wooden steam barge
GPS Location: N45° 01.996’ W83° 11.988’
Depth: 18 feet
Wreck Length: 160 feet
Beam: 30 feet
Gross Tonnage: 572
Launched: 1872 by Linn and Craig at Gibraltar, Michigan
Wrecked: November 23, 1907
Mooring buoy: Mooring Buoy data found here
Description: On the night of November 23, 1907, the freighter Monohansett hid behind Thunder Bay Island to avoid gale-force winds sweeping across Lake Huron. Shortly after 10:00 p.m., alarms sounded when one of the crew members reported fire. An oil lantern had tipped over, and a blaze quickly spread. It was the crew’s worst nightmare—the Monohansett’s old timbers were primed for burning, and the ship was loaded with 900 tons of highly flammable coal. The freighter became a furnace, and the crew had no choice but to abandon ship.
Tragedy was averted thanks to the daring crew of the Thunder Bay Island Life-Saving Station. Seeing the ship ablaze, the lifesavers swiftly rescued Monohansett’s crew. Had the freighter been on the open lake, many would have perished in Lake Huron’s cold November waters. The ship’s only lifeboat, a small yawl, would not have held all 12 crew members.
Monohansett is one of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary’s most popular shipwreck sites to visit. Today, the wreck rests in clear, shallow water just off Thunder Bay Island. It is regularly visited by divers, snorkelers, swimmers, paddlers, and a glass bottom boat, all of which come to see its wooden hull, boilers, and machinery.
Great Lakes Maritime Collection digital archive: http://greatlakeships.org/2906867/data?n=2