Lake Michigan wreck joins National Register of Historic Places

MOSELLE – A wreck that lies submerged in Lake Michigan about 13 miles northeast of the Sheboygan Breakwater Lighthouse has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Abiah was a schooner launched in the late summer of 1847 at Irving, New York. He operated in the Great Lakes grain and lumber trades during his career.

In September 1855, while traveling from Chicago to Oconto, Wisconsin, Abiah was struck by a sudden gust of wind and capsized.

The ship was towed less than 15 miles from Sheboygan, where it was eventually overtaken by waves and sank.

Abiah’s location remained unknown – until the site was discovered in 2019.

The ship is largely intact and is submerged in 220 feet of water, a Wisconsin Historical Society press release said.

“The site has the potential to provide a wealth of information on the construction of the first schooners on the Great Lakes,” the company added in its statement.

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A diver explores the Abiah wreck site on Lake Michigan, 13 miles northeast of Sheboygan Breakwater Lighthouse.

Abiah was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2021, a press release from the state historical society said in December.

The National Register is the official list of historic properties in America deemed worthy of preservation and is maintained by the National Park Service of the US Department of the Interior. The Wisconsin Historical Society administers the program within Wisconsin. It includes sites, buildings, structures, objects, and neighborhoods that are significant in national, state, or local history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, or culture.

To learn more about Abiah, go to

Contact Brandon Reid at 920-686-2984 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at @breidHTRNews.

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