Lake Michigan winter ice melts, revealing shipwrecks beneath crystal-clear water

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A US Coast Guard aircrew took photos of shipwrecks last week during a routine patrol along the northeast shoreline. One pilot, Lt. Cmdr. Charlie Wilson, told NPR that it is "fairly common" to spot an old wreck on patrols but “not in the numbers we saw on that flight". Some of the wrecks are known, including the 1857 wreckage of the James McBride – a 121 foot long brig which sank during a storm on 19 October 1857 – and the 1917 wreckage of the Rising Sun – a 133 foot long wooden steamer – while others are yet to be identified. James McBride: The 121 foot brig James McBride ran aground during a storm on 19 October, 1857 James McBride: The 121 foot brig James McBride ran aground during a storm on 19 October, 1857 Lake Michigan is undergoing its annual springtime transition after the winter ice melts and ahead of the return of summer sediment and algae, when the water is left unusually clear. NPR reported that around 6,000 ships have sank in the five Great Lakes, 1,500 of them in Lake Michigan alone.
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