136-year-old shipwreck found in Georgian Bay

The Jane Miller


By Rob Gowan - Calgary Sun


The wreck of a steamship that went down in Georgian Bay during a storm 136 years ago has been found, with what could be human remains onboard.

American shipwreck hunters Jared Daniels, Jerry Eliason and Ken Merryman revealed their summer discovery to coincide with the anniversary of the Jane Miller’s sinking Nov. 25, 1881.

The 24-metre package and passenger steamer went down with 25 people aboard, including the crew. The wreck was found in Colpoys Bay, an inlet of Georgian Bay leading to Wiarton on the east side of the Bruce Peninsula north of Owen Sound in Georgian Bay.

The ship mostly is structurally intact with its mast still standing, rising within 23 metres of the surface. The shipwreck hunters also reported spotting what could be remains of bodies.

Merryman, who’s hunted shipwrecks for more than 40 years, said it was exciting to find the missing vessel. “People call these things time capsules and they absolutely are,” he said from his home in Minnesota.

“That ship took on 10 to 20 tonnes of cargo, so now the archeologists have a snapshot of 1880s life on the Bruce Peninsula with what kinds of things are there.”


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wreck Georgian Bay steamship Jane Miller Colpoys Bay