Back during mooring season we got word the cabin had fallen down on the Ellie May shipwreck but really didn’t know the extent of the damage. I got a chance to see it this week, and my pictures show the story. (Matthew Charlesworth)
It looks like it was lifted and dropped during the off season on its spine and cracked at the keel and split the hull. There was no evidence I could tell of anchors or other human interaction to cause its collapse. We have had some incredible storms lately, though its surprising to see something 50ft down affected. I was reminded by a colleague that its a stark reminder that even in conditions like ours (colder, fresh water) none of these sites will last forever.
Not to jump on some soap box but this is a prime example of why I am happy to belong/and contribute to preservation and heritage groups. Folks like shotlinediving.com, 3Dshipwrecks.org & GLSPS, Preserve Our Wrecks Kingston, and last but not least Save Ontario Shipwrecks do some amazing work. None of them are perfect, however their efforts to record and educate folks on our marine heritage play a huge part keeping our communities history alive. I would encourage you to visit each of those online sites to see the Effie Mae in her glory. I intend to make a 3d model at some point soon of her current state.
Get out there dive the great lakes sites while you can, take only pictures leave only bubbles.
About the Effie May
The Elffie Mae arrived at the Metal Craft Dry Dock in the spring of 1993 to be prepared for sinking. The Effie Mae was laid to rest on October 17, 1993, twenty-five years after her christening. She is now a popular dive site, sitting upright next to the wreck of the schooner barge Aloha. Local divers affectionately refer to the “Effie” wreck as “Ken’s wreck,” as Ken Mullings did the majority of the work to sink the Effie for all to enjoy.
Thanks to Matthew Charlesworth for the contribution of this article and photographs.