Table of Contents
GPS Location : N44°50.195' W82°58.722' Depth: 255 Feet Wreck Length: 328 Feet Beam: 42 Feet Gross Tonnage: 2820 Cargo: Unknown Launched: 1892 by Wheeler, F.W. & Company in West Bay City, Michigan Wrecked: May 22, 1914 Description: Bound up with a cargo of coal for Green Bay, W.H. Gilbert was nearly cut in two and sunk by the steamer Caldera during a dense fog south of Thunder. The wreck is largely intact though heavily damaged at the point of collision. The mizzen mast remains upright, though the smokestack was toppled and crushed during impact. The deck is equipped with davits and blocks, wire rigging, winches, bollards and cargo hatches. The bow is largely covered in clay but the forecastle portholes remain in place, and a metal anchor davit with shackle and the folding stock of an anchor are located forward of the stem
David Swayze Shipwreck File
W.H. GILBERT Other names : none Official no. : 81382 Type at loss : propeller, steel, bulk freight Build info : 1892, F. Wheeler, W. Bay City hull #89 Specs : 328x42x20 2820g 2200n Date of loss : 1914, May 22 Place of loss : 15 mi off Thunder Bay Isl. Lake : Huron Type of loss : collision Loss of life : none Carrying : ? Detail : She collided with the 500 foot steamer CALDERA in a fog and sank quickly. She had been struck amidships and nearly cut in two. Wreckage discovered by divers in 1983. Sources: sbs,vbs,stb,slh,sol,is,ns2,lhdc,mpl
Select News Article
W. H. GILBERT was a steel freighter of the old style “Between Deck” design, built by F. W. Wheeler & Company, at West Bay City in 1892 for the Empire Transit Company, one of the fleets controlled by the Wolvin interests of Duluth. Her U.S. Registry number was 81382. Dimensions 328 x 42.5 x 20.5. 2820 gross tons and 2200 net. A very fast freighter, she was powered by a big triple expansion engine or 23“, 37” and 62“ diameter of cylinders by 44” stroke, built by the Frontier Iron works at Detroit. With several other Wolvin ships, she passed into the Pittsburgh Steamship Company fleet in 1901. For twelve more years she carried ore as a Silver Stacker. In 1913, she was sold to the Lakewood Steamship Company or Cleveland, a Hutchinson subsidiary. She was lost in collision with the freighter CALDERA off Thunder Bay Islands Lake Huron, on May 22, 1916.
Telescope Magazine August 1961 p. 152
Merchant Vessel List
Steam screw W.H. GILBERT. U. S. No. 81382. Of 2,820 tons gross; 2,002 Merchant Vessel Listtons net. Built West Bay City, 1892. Home port, Detroit, Mich. 328.0 x 42.5 x 20.5.
Institute for Great Lakes Research
W.H. GILBERT Built June 16, 1892 Bulk Propeller -Steel U. S. No. 81382 2820 gt -2200 nt 328' x 42.5' x 20.5' Sunk in collision with stmr. CALDERA, May 22, 1914, 15 miles off Thunder Bay Island, Lake Huron.
Frank Wheeler & Co., West Bay City Shipbuilding Master List