Shipwreck Kiosks Bring Lake Erie Maritime History To Tourist Spots
Published: Thursday, September 12, 2019
Ohio Sea Grant and partners have set up four interactive kiosks at popular tourist locations along the lakeshore that introduce visitors to 31 Lake Erie shipwrecks, 22 lighthouses, and nine maritime museums that help tell the story of Ohio’s rich maritime history. The kiosks parallel Ohio Sea Grant’s Shipwrecks and Maritime Tales of the Lake Erie Coastal Ohio Trail, a web guide to Lake Erie’s shipwrecks, their history, and location.
Kiosks are set up at the Maumee Bay State Park Nature Center in Oregon, the Lake Erie Shores and Islands Visitors Center in Port Clinton, Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Research Reserve in Huron, and the Lake Erie Nature and Science Center in Bay Village. The website is available at ohioshipwrecks.org, and an accompanying brochure can be downloaded at go.osu.edu/shipwreck.
“The website and accompanying kiosks are designed to help Ohio residents and visitors locate and learn about the many historical, cultural, and recreational shipwrecks in Ohio’s Lake Erie waters,” said Ohio Sea Grant Extension Educator Joe Lucente.
Shipping has always played a large role in the economic development of Ohio and the Great Lakes region, and the history behind each shipwreck tells part of the story. Based on historical records, Lake Erie has over 1,700 shipwrecks, 277 of which have been discovered to date. Overall, more than 6,000 shipwrecks are known to have occurred in the Great Lakes.
“Lake Erie Nature & Science Center is excited to bring Ohio Sea Grant’s exhibit and research to its more than 160,000 annual visitors who enjoy free admission seven days each week,” said Catherine Timko, executive director of the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center. “The interactive exhibit recognizes people’s connectedness to Lake Erie and encourages lifelong discovery of its natural history.”
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Office of Coastal Management, the National Museum of the Great Lakes, Cleveland Underwater Explorers Inc. (CLUE) and the Maritime Archaeological Survey Team (MAST) were partners on the update project, which was funded by the ODNR Office of Coastal Management.
This article first appeared in the Fall Issue (Sep/Oct) 2019 of Great Lakes Scuttlebutt magazine.