In 1889, Capt. James Davidson built a 4-masted schooner, hull #23, official no. 145507. The length was 222 feet and 2 inches. The beam was 38 feet wide. The depth of the hold was either 16 or 19 feet(?). Tonnage was 1385.49g 1316.22n. It had 6 hatches 11’x28’ on 24’ centers. Capt. Davidson did not like to name his vessels after people and named most of them after far-away places instead. He named hull #23 the TOKIO, an early spelling of the city of Tokyo, Japan. The TOKIO was later owned by Menominee Transportation Co. of Milwaukee, N.S. Whipple of Detroit, Henry Wineman, Jr. of Detroit, and the last owner were Pringle Barge Line of Cleveland. The TOKIO hauled iron ore on the Great Lakes for 28 years, with the following few incidents. In July of 1892, the TOKIO was being towed near Mackinaw by the R.P. FLOWER, which took on water and was run aground in a heavy sea to prevent it from sinking. The TOKIO was cut loose to fend for itself, which it did. In August 1892, the TOKIO bound down in Lake St. Clair in tow of the steamer RALEIGH, ran aground near Grosse Point, and had to be lightened. On October 9, 1917, the TOKIO collided with the barge HOMER and sank in the St. Clair River. The TOKIO was recovered but was never repaired. It sat around for 2 years, then it was either scuttled or just allowed to sink near the foot of Recors Road below the Edison coal dock in East China, Michigan, in 1919. In 1940, the War Department Corps of Engineers added the wreck of the TOKIO to the nautical charts. In 1963, when the water levels were low, the wreck of the TOKIO became a hazard to navigation and was dynamited to a least depth of 14 feet by the Corps of Engineers.
The main piece of the wreck is oriented north-south, in 19 feet of water, with a double-hull that rises to a depth of 14 feet. There is another piece of wreckage beside it with some exposed pieces of deck and knees on it that are oriented east-west with a max depth of 25 or 30 feet. That piece of wreckage is more flattened out but has a little bit of space under the deck that is home to many fish. A lot of the wreck is buried in the bottom. This wreck could be shore-dived if you could get permission from any one of the homeowners next to it. Otherwise, it is a boat dive.