Beneath the bone-chilling waters of Lake Superior lies a century-old mystery that has puzzled Great Lakes historians and maritime enthusiasts for generations. On May 1, 1909, the Adella Shores vanished without a trace while navigating the icy expanse near Michigan's Whitefish Point. The Adella Shores disappearance has been shrouded in mystery ever since, with no one witnessing its demise and all 14 souls aboard presumed dead. Fast forward over 100 years, and the veil of secrecy surrounding the ship is lifting, thanks to the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society announcement made 115 years after the wooden steamship's last voyage.

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The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society announced a remarkable discovery on May 1st, 2024, unearthing the long-lost vessel beneath 650 feet of water, roughly 40 miles northwest of Whitefish Point. Though the announcement was made in '24, the Adella Shores was first seen on sonar in 2021, when Darryl Ertel, director of marine operations for the historical society, using side-scan sonar technology, stumbled upon an interesting anomaly on the lakebed.

Detroit Publishing Co via Library of Congress
Detroit Publishing Co via Library of Congress
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The Adella Shores was built in Gibraltar, Michigan, for the Shores Lumber Company in 1994. Named for the owner's daughter, Adella, the ship's christening was marked by smashing a bottle of water instead of the traditional champagne. Sailors viewed this as a bad omen and would plague the ship's voyages in the eyes of those working on it.

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Despite encountering troubles and actually sinking twice before its disappearance, the Adella Shores ventured across Lake Superior on its final journey, carrying a load of salt from Ludington, Michigan, to Duluth, Minnesota. The 195-foot steamer followed a larger ship in treacherous conditions when it vanished on May 1, 1909. With its discovery, the ship joins the ranks of historical relics resting on the bottom of Michigan's Lake Superior.

Adella Shores: Century Old Shipwreck Discovered in Lake Superior

The Adella Shores disappeared on May 1, 1909, during a gale in Michigan's Lake Superior near Whitefish Point. Over 100 years after the ship 'Went Missing,' the wreckage of the 195-foot wooden steamer has been found 650 feet below the icy waters of Lake Superior. Here's a look at the Adella Shores today, courtesy of the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

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