New shipwreck identity discovered

WHITEHALL, Mich. (AP) — Some experts have come up with a new identity for a shipwreck that has emerged along the Lake Michigan shore in western Michigan.

They say it’s not long enough to be the LC Woodruff, a schooner that sank near Whitehall in 1878. They tell WZZM-TV that they believe it’s the Contest, which was built in Buffalo, New York, and lost in 1882.

Valerie van Heest of the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association visited the site with marine archaeologist Eric Harmsen. They brought records and tools to measure the wood ribbing, which is suddenly exposed because of waves and currents.

Van Heest predicts the wreck will be covered again sometime next year. She says, “Mother Nature is a wild woman.”

People have been visiting the site after seeing online photos.