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Titanic sank in 1912 and the stories of amazing survival and tragic loss made the ocean liner famous. Titanic’s discovery in 1985—and the images captured of the grand staircase, the pilothouse, and the dripping rusticles—made Titanic legendary.
Likewise, the many shipwrecks presented in Lost and Found became even more famous after their discoveries than at the time of their losses, gaining notoriety as historic attractions, archaeological sites, and in some cases, over bold salvage attempts or precedent- setting legal battles. Through riveting narrative, the award-winning author and explorer takes the readers back in time to experience the careers and tragic sinkings of these ships, then beneath the lake to participate in the triumphant discovery and exciting exploration of their remains and the circumstances that led to their status as legendary shipwrecks.
The vessels in this comprehensive publication span the age of sail, steam, and diesel on the Great Lakes from the earliest schooners to the sidewheel steamers, propellers, carferries, self-unloaders, and yachts. They include ships lost in Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan waters that were discovered by some of the lake’s most prolific wreck hunters, including the author’s own organization—Michigan Shipwreck Research Associates—in partnerships with legendary wreck hunters David Trotter, Ralph Wilbanks, and nationally acclaimed author Clive Cussler. Presented chronologically based on the date discovered, these shipwrecks provide an overview of evolving diver attitudes and conduct, as well as the laws affecting exploration and documentation.
Most assuredly, the compelling sagas of these important vessels did not end when the waves of Lake Michigan washed over them.
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Principal in Lafferty van Heest and Associates Exhibit Design Firm, Director of Michigan Shipwreck Research Associates and a member of the Women Divers Hall of Fame, Valerie van Heest has explored, documented and interpreted shipwrecks for over twenty years. She is a recipient of multiple awards from the Historical Society of Michigan for the collection, preservation and promotion of state and local history through her interpretation, writing, filmmaking and exhibit work. She has written several books, magazine/journal articles and more than a dozen documentary films.. Her work has been featured in numerous books and articles as well. Valerie is a regular presenter at museums, libraries, and film festivals, sharing the dramatic stories of ships gone missing on the Great Lakes and has appeared on television news networks as well as on the Discovery Channel. Valerie spearheads MSRA’s search for ships lost off western Michigan, which has resulted in the discovery of many new shipwrecks.
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