November 19, 1914: Three vessels wrecked on Lake Superior

On this day on Lake Superior in 1914, the steamer C. F. Curtis and two barges under her tow wrecked seven miles east of Grand Marais on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. On the 19th the Curtis was headed to Tonawanda, New York, towing the lumber barges Annie M. Peterson (formerly a three-masted schooner) and Seldon E. Marvin, when she steered all three vessels directly into a November gale. All three vessels were lost, as were 28 men, fourteen on the Curtis and seven each on the the Peterson and the Marvin. It was another huge blow to the vessels’ owners, the Edward Hines Lumber Company, which had lost three other vessels just the week before. The area in which the Curtis, Marvin, and Peterson went down, reported the Duluth News Tribune, was “lined with the hulks of sunken ships…the worst spot on Lake Superior” and “the Graveyard of the Great Lakes.” In October 2003, Grand Marais residents spotted the remains of a shipwreck off shore about 6 miles east of the harbor. They are thought to be what remains of the Annie M. Peterson.

The C. F. Curtis. (Image: Great Lakes Vessel Index)