Not much is known about the wreck site as it was only discovered during 2016’s diving season with a promise to return to surgery her and release more video and pictures. I hope they come through.
The wooden J.S. SEAVERNS stranded near Michipicoten Island on Lake Superior on 12 May 1884. She had been carrying passengers from Chicago to Port Arthur. She was pulled free by a tug, but then sank. She was formerly a steam barge, being built on the bottom of the side-wheel tug JOHN P. WARD in Saugatuck, Michigan in 1880. The WARD dated back to 1857, had burned in 1865, was then rebuilt as a schooner, and in 1880, was finally rebuilt as the SEAVERNS.
SEAVERNS, J.S. Propeller. Home port, Saugatuck. On May 10, 1884 Propeller sunk at Michipicoten, Lake Superior, with a cargo of supplies, and became a total loss. Hull loss $12,500. Cargo loss $20,434. Insured for $28,434
Disasters to Lake Vessels, 1884
Cleveland Herald Nov. 28th. 1884
. . . . .
SEAVERNS, J.S. Propeller of 173 tons. Built Saugatuck Aug. 1880 by James Elliott. Owned by R.C. Brittain. Home port, Saugatuck. Valued at $15,000 and classed A 2 REMARKS :- Built on bottom of Steamer WARD.
Vessel Classification of Inland Lloyds
American Hulls for 1882
This little boat[ J.P. WARD] had a colorful history. She was built at Detroit by J. L. Wolverton in 1857 as a sidewheel tug and was in use as a boom tug on the Saginaw River until she caught fire in July of 1865. She was raised and converted to a schooner (US#12791) locally, at a total cost of $40,000.
She was towed to Saugatuck after the accident above and her hull was was used by Brittain to build a passenger propeller named J. S. SEAVERNS (US#76152), being launched anew in 1880. The SEAVERNS was sold Canadian in 1884 and was owned on Lake Superior when she backed onto a reef in Michipicoten Harbor in May of the same year. She foundered after being pulled free, a total loss. ] Dave Swayze note.