Harbor Springs Historical Society presents St. Andrew and Peshtigo Shipwrecks Talk. Bernie Hellstrom will talk about his adventure in finding and identifying two civil war-era shipwrecks in 2019 – St. Andrew and Peshtigo. The two shipwrecks lay silent for 140 years, between Beaver Island, North Fox Island, and Charlevoix before Hellstrom’s discovery. Peshtigo, a 161-foot-long schooner, was hauling coal to Chicago. St. Andrew, a two-masted schooner 143 feet in length, was carrying corn from Chicago to Buffalo. The ships collided at 1 a.m. after confusion in signal torches between the passing vessels. Two men were lost, with the rest of the crews picked up by another schooner.
Hunting for sunken ships and other Great Lakes flotsam and jetsam is Hellstrom’s hobby. “I’m pretty much exploring the Great Lakes because you never know what’s down there,” Hellstrom said. “There’s a little bit of everything on the bottom of the Great Lakes.” Steel rails, locomotives, and train cars that fell off barges have been found. Hellstrom has seen cars, shopping carts, fishing shanties, and even a sewing machine.
Hellstrom’s talk takes place at 5:30 pm on the second floor of the Harbor Springs History Museum. Admission is $10 per person and advanced registration is strongly encouraged. Register using the LINK or call 231-526-9771.