Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary


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New Orleans
Wooden Side Wheel Steamboat
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GPS Location : N45° 02.579’ W83° 14.425’
Depth: 15 Feet
Wreck Length: 130 Feet Beam: 27 Feet
Gross Tonnage: 610 Cargo: Passengers and freight
Launched: 1838 by B.F. Goodsell at Detroit, Michigan
Wrecked: June 14, 1849
Description: The New Orleans was originally called Vermillion, but it was rebuilt and renamed New Orleans after a disastrous fire in 1842; it was also lengthened from 131 to 165 feet at the time.  During the night of June 13,1849 it was steaming North on Lake Huron when it ran into a heavy fog off Thunder Bay.  Early on the 14th, it strayed from its route and ran onto a reef at Sugar Island.  Her passengers were transferred safely to Thunder Bay Island by local fishermen, and later picked up by a passing steamer. Strong winds and waves destroyed the stranded vessel a few days later. 

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wreck coordinates Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center