Cornelia B. Windiate
Vessel Type: Sail: wooden three-masted schooner
GPS Location: N45° 19.526’ W83° 13.106’
Depth: 180 Feet
Wreck Length: 138 Feet
Beam: 26 Feet
Gross Tonnage: 322
Launched: 1874 by Thomas Windiate at Manitowoc, Wisconsin
Wrecked: November 27, 1875
Mooring buoy: No
Description:In late November 1875, the 139-foot Cornelia B. Windiate, designed to carry 16,000 bushels of wheat, left Milwaukee, Wisconsin with 21,000 bushels. The crew of nine battled extreme cold and high winds as they sailed toward Buffalo, New York.
The Cornelia B. Windiate’s final moments are a mystery. Spray from huge waves may have coated it with layers of ice, adding a crushing weight to the overloaded ship. Handling the vessel likely became difficult and then impossible. The ship and crew vanished off Presque Isle.
Until divers found the wreck in 1986, few believed the Cornelia B. Windiate ever made it to Lake Huron. Sitting upright in 185 feet of water, the ship is frozen in time by cold, fresh water. With its masts still standing and the crew’s lifeboat resting silently nearby, the Cornelia B. Windiate is a dramatic reminder of the dangers of late season travel on the Great Lakes.
Great Lakes Maritime Collection digital archive: http://greatlakeships.org/2894747/data?n=1