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Archive for July, 2019

Spur, Texas

Posted by graywacke on July 29, 2019

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-a-week blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some relatively recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2452; A Landing A Day blog post number 888.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long (N33o 15.151’, W101o 6.155’) puts me in Cen-NW Texas:

My local landing map shows that I landed some distance from my titular Spur (actually about 20 miles).  Post is much closer, but as I’ll discuss in a bit, I already posted a Post post. 

My streams-only map:

I landed in the watershed of the Salt Fork of the Brazos River (just north of the drainage divided between the Salt Fork and the Double Mountain Fork; in fact, at first I assumed the wrong watershed.  This was my fifth landing in this watershed, making the Salt Fork the 173rd river on my list of rivers with 5 or more hits.  And then, of course, to the Brazos (34th hit).

I landed way out in the boonies, with no worthwhile Google Earth (GE) Street View coverage of my landing.  But I did manage to get the Orange Dude on a bridge over the Salt Fork:

And before showing you the Salt Fork proper, here’s a look at the sign that the ever-vigilant Texas DOT put at the end of the bridge:

And here’s the Fork itself:

So, I landed near Post a while back (June 2017).  My Post post is a great post, and I encourage you to enter “Post Texas” in the search block to check it out.

But today, I’m stuck with Spur.  A quick look through the internet confirms two hooks:  the Heaven’s gate cult and tiny houses.  We’ll start on the dark side with Heaven’s Gate.  From Wiki, about Marshall Applewhite:

Marshall Applewhite Jr. (1931 – 1997) was an American cult leader who founded what became known as the Heaven’s Gate religious group and organized their mass suicide in 1997, claiming the lives of 39 people.

A native of Spur, Texas, Applewhite attended several universities, and as a young man, served in the United States Army. After finishing school at Austin College, he taught music at the University of Alabama. He later returned to Texas, where he led choruses and served as the chair of the music department at the University of St. Thomas in Houston.

[Sounds pretty normal so far.]

He left the school in 1970, citing emotional turmoil. His father’s death a year later brought on severe depression. In 1972, he developed a close friendship with Bonnie Nettles, a nurse; together, they discussed mysticism at length and concluded that they were called as divine messengers.


They operated a bookstore and teaching center for a short while, and then began to travel around the U.S. in 1973 to spread their views. They only gained one convert.

[Too bad it didn’t end there . . . ]

In 1975, Applewhite was arrested for failing to return a rental car and was jailed for 6 months. In jail, he further developed his theology.

After Applewhite’s release, he traveled to California and Oregon with Nettles, eventually gaining a group of committed followers. Applewhite and Nettles told their followers that they would be visited by extraterrestrials who would provide them with new bodies.

[It’s hard to imagine followers who actually bought into this.]

Applewhite initially stated that his followers and he would physically ascend to a spaceship, where their bodies would be transformed, but later, he came to believe that their bodies were the mere containers of their souls, which would later be placed into new bodies.

[whatever . . .]

The group received an influx of funds in the late 1970s, which it used to pay housing and other expenses. In 1985, Nettles died, leaving Applewhite distraught and challenging his views on physical ascension. In the early 1990s, the group took more steps to publicize their theology.

In 1996, they learned of the approach of Comet Hale–Bopp and rumors of an accompanying spaceship. They concluded that this spaceship was the vessel that would take their spirits on board for a journey to another planet. Believing that their souls would ascend to the spaceship and be given new bodies, the group members committed mass suicide in their mansion.

I remember this, but mistakenly thought it involved the comet that hit Jupiter.  (That would be Shoemaker-Levy in 1994; just a couple of years before Hale Bopp.)

Here’s a cool shot of Hale Bopp from Sky & Telescope (photo by Dr. John Goldsmith):

There’s a cool story about the discovery of Hale Bopp.  From Wiki:

The comet was discovered independently on July 23, 1995, by two observers, Alan Hale and Thomas Bopp, both in the United States.

Hale had spent many hundreds of hours searching for comets without success, and was tracking known comets from his driveway in New Mexico when he chanced upon what appeared to be an unknown comet just after midnight. The comet lay near the globular cluster M70.  Hale first established that there was no other deep-sky object near M70, and then consulted a directory of known comets, finding that none were known to be in this area of the sky.

Once he had established that the object was moving relative to the background stars, he emailed the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, the clearing house for astronomical discoveries.

Bopp did not own a telescope. He was out with friends near Stanfield, Arizona, observing star clusters and galaxies when he chanced across the comet while at the eyepiece of his friend’s telescope. He realized he might have spotted something new when, like Hale, he checked his star maps to determine if any other deep-sky objects were known to be near M70, and found that there were none.

He alerted the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams through a Western Union telegram. Brian G. Marsden, who had run the bureau since 1968, laughed, “Nobody sends telegrams anymore. I mean, by the time that telegram got here, Alan Hale had already e-mailed us three times with updated coordinates.”

The following morning, it was confirmed that this was a new comet.

So.  It’s time for tiny houses.  Wow.  There are 20+ web sites that discuss tiny houses in Spur! And here they are now:


I’ll do it the easy way.  Check out this video:


Then I ran across an article entitled:  “‘No anarchists or nudists’ welcome in Texas ‘Tiny House’ community.”  From the article (RT.com):

Hard-boiled Texans in the tiny city of Spur have begun to re-think their initial embrace of the Tiny House movement since too many “anarchists and nudists” started moving to the town.

Two years ago, residents signed a proclamation declaring Spur to be “America’s first ‘tiny’ house friendly town.” Nearly all building restrictions were removed in the hope of reversing a population decline and attracting “eco-conscious, do-it-yourself builders who like to live in very small houses,” reported the Wall Street Journal.

Dickens County commissioner Charlie Morris said the recent influx of new inhabitants has brought residents that are “educated, professional, and seem like they really have something to bring to the community,” but then added, “What we don’t want are anarchists or nudists.”

The town’s loose building codes, low prices, and ultra-high-speed fiber internet have allowed residents to work from home rather than farm for a living.

However, Spur soon realized that they needed a few more rules and regulations.  New restrictions specify that all tiny houses have to be connected to the power grid, water supply, and sewer system – and they can’t be on wheels.

And, anarchists and nudists aren’t welcome . . .

I’ll close with a couple of GE shots from Spur.  First this, from just north of town (by Jeremiah Anzaldua):

And then there’s this cool spur & arrow sculpture right in Spur.  The sculptures were built by local welder John Grusendorf; the photographer is Eric Viklund:

That’ll do it . . .




© 2019 A Landing A Day

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Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania

Posted by graywacke on July 21, 2019

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-a-week blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some relatively recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2451; A Landing A Day blog post number 887.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long (N41o 22.625’, W80o 27.943’) puts me in NW Pennsylvania:

My local landing map shows that I landed in a spot almost surrounded by the Pymatuning Reservoir, and not far from my titular Conneaut Lake:

Note:  I’m referring to the lake, not the town . . .

My streams-only map shows that I landed in the watershed of the Shenango River (first hit ever!  Note that the Pymatuning Reservoir is the dammed-up Shenango), on to the Beaver River (3rd hit); to the Ohio River (153rd hit).  Of course, the Ohio makes its way to the MM (951st hit).

Speaking of watersheds, check out this map:

Pretty dramatic when you think about it.  North of the line, rainwater ends up going past Quebec City on its way to the North Atlantic, and south of the line, it ends up going past New Orleans on its way to the Gulf of Mexico.

Just imagining the scenery that the drops of water will be passing through, here’s the St. Lawrence in Quebec City (GE shot by Sabastien Rodriguez):

And the Mississippi in New Orleans (GE shot by Vaughn Dunn):

Unlike the Continental Divide out in the Rockies, this divide is very subtle, lacking any obvious drama.  I can’t help but think of some local residents whose land is on both sides of the divide (or who drive across it every day), but they have no clue.  When I lived in northeastern Ohio, it just so happens that the very same drainage divide was about a half-mile from my house.  I remember going out for jogs, and turning around when I crossed the divide . . .

Let’s move on to Google Earth, and see about Street View coverage for my landing.  Not bad:

And here’s what the Orange Dude sees:

I had the OD head south of the Reservoir, so he could get a look at the Shenango proper:

And here ‘tis:

Before leaving GE, let me zoom way back and show you all 474 of my landings since January 2013:

Notice the large landing-free zone that stretches from NY down to Ohio, then southeast to the Carolinas?  See that lonely landing south of Lake Erie?  That’s today’s landing.  Let’s take a closer look at the northern portion of the LFZ:

You can see that today’s landing certainly has no close neighbors . . .

Sometimes I land within a few miles of a previous landing, and sometimes I land in the middle of an LFZ . . .

Moving right along.  Unlike the man-made Pymatuning, Conneaut Lake is natural.  From Wiki:

Conneaut Lake is the largest natural lake in Pennsylvania by surface area.  During the summer season, it is heavily populated with vacationers, many of whom are from the Pittsburgh area. Other than the lake itself, the largest draw to the area has long been Conneaut Lake Park, a popular amusement park.

[More about the amusement park in a bit.]

Conneaut Lake was formed as a kettle lake at the end of the Pleistocene. A large block of ice broke off the receding ice front and was surrounded by accumulating sediment. After the ice melted, the resulting depression was filled with water forming the lake. Lakes that form in this manner are known as kettle lakes.

Water exits the lake through the Conneaut Outlet which flows into French Creek [and then to the Allegheny River, which joins the Monongahela to form the Ohio in Pittsburgh] making it part of the Mississippi River drainage.

Kettle lakes are cool.  I enjoy imagining myself in western Pennsylvania about 10,000 years ago.  In front of me is a mile-high front of ice, with torrents of meltwater flowing away from the ice. The meltwater torrents are heavily loaded with sand and gravel that was entrained within the ice.   Then, this huge chunk of ice at least the size of Conneaut Lake (3 miles long by one mile wide; likely much bigger) breaks away from the ice front. It dramatically tumbles down on the sand and gravel already deposited in front of the glacier.  It fairly quickly gets buried by sand and gravel being carried by the meltwater.  This huge block of ice would remain for some time.

How long might it remain buried, one could ask?  I have no clue.  Heck, it could be buried for years as far as I know.  But eventually, it melts; and as it melts, the sand and gravel above it begins, naturally enough, to subside.  And then, this depression becomes low enough to fill with water, and voila!  There’s Conneaut lake.

Staying with all things glacial, I noticed this on my local StreetAtlas map:

Hmmm.  The Conneaut Lake Kame, eh?  Well, as a geologist, I remembered a kame as a glacial feature, but I was a little vague as to exactly what it is.  Off to Wiki I went:

A kame is a glacial landform, an irregularly shaped hill or mound typically composed of sand, gravel and clay.  With the melting of the glacier, streams carry sediment to glacial lakes that form in depressions on the ice.  The sediment is deposited in the temporary lake, building what is termed a kame delta on top of the ice. However, with the continuous melting of the glacier, the kame delta eventually collapses onto the land surface resulting in the formation of a kame.

Kames are often associated with kettles, and this is referred to as kame and kettle topography. The word kame is a variant of comb, which has the meaning “crest” among others.

This is also pretty cool – so let’s use Google Earth (and hopefully Street View) to get a look at this kame.  Here’s the GE aerial view:

Oh no!  The erstwhile kame has been removed and is now nothing but a sand and gravel pit!  I hate it when that happens!  As they say, this thing kame and went .

So what about the amusement park is noteworthy?  From Wiki:

Conneaut Lake Park is a summer resort and amusement park. It has long served as a regional tourist destination, and is noted by roller coaster enthusiasts for its classic Blue Streak coaster, which was recently classified as “historic” by the American Coaster Enthusiasts group.

Conneaut Lake Park was founded in 1892 as Exposition Park by Col. Frank Mantor as a permanent fairground and exposition for livestock, machinery, and industrial products from Western Pennsylvania.

The park was renamed “Conneaut Lake Park” in 1920 to reflect a move toward more amusements and rides. Rides added over these years included a Tumble Bug, bumper car ride, and a Figure Eight roller coaster (later renamed The Jack Rabbit). In 1938, the park’s signature roller coaster, The Blue Streak, was added.

In 1995, the Park filed for bankruptcy and was taken over by a non-profit corporation.  In the early 2000s, the park experienced a renewed interest, driven by roller coaster and amusement park enthusiasts.  Several of the park’s rides, including the Devil’s Den and Blue Streak Roller Coaster, were repaired by volunteers. In August 2010, the park received $50,000 in funds from a contest sponsored by Pepsi for use in restoring the Blue Streak.

I went to the Conneaut Park website, and found this bit of nostalgia / marketing:

Opened in 1892 as Exposition Park, located on the west side of Conneaut Lake in Western Pennsylvania, a gem survives to this day as a trip back in time. Not a manufactured museum or contrived in any way, Conneaut Lake Park now represents a real alternative to today’s frenetic and agitated lifestyle.

The very feel of the park, indeed even its aroma, hint of a long and steady past there for us to enjoy. Conneaut Lake Park is a salve to nerves stressed to the breaking point – truly a place of relaxation and refreshment.

Who can resist a picnic with family and friends in Blue Streak Grove where the sound of shrieking riders makes you laugh and hurry to finish your meal so you can be where they are, on the ride of your life? Who can pass up playing just one game and trying to win that “Grand” prize stuffed animal? Imagine dancing the night away in the Dreamland Ballroom and watching the sun set from the balcony… No, Conneaut Lake Park is not just an amusement park, it is a way of remembering what so many people tend to forget when they grow older: how to be a child!

To sit in one of the old wooden rocking chairs on the porch of the Hotel Conneaut and watch a July moon rise over the lake, shimmering in reflection off the soft waters while the red and green of the boat’s running lights seem to skate effortlessly over the lake’s surface, captures something no technology could hope to approximate.

Conneaut Lake Park, to so many of us and hopefully many more generations to come, is not just an amusement park, it is memories and good times, carefree moments we all experienced, whether you are ninety years old or nine years old.

So, we offer to you now, to take a ride back in time to remember and to relive and to make new memories as patrons and lovers of Conneaut Lake Park. Hold on tight and enjoy the ride!

Here’s a GE shot of the Blue Streak by David Kenzig:

And another from the GroupOn website:

And yes, I was able to send the OD for a Street View shot of the Blue Streak:

I’ll close with this GE shot of Pymatuning Reservoir by CasMag:


That’ll do it . . .




© 2019 A Landing A Day

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Eucha, New Eucha, Old Eucha and Jay, Oklahoma

Posted by graywacke on July 13, 2019

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-a-week blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some relatively recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2450; A Landing A Day blog post number 886.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long (N36o 22.625’, W94o 49.814’) puts me in NE Oklahoma::

My local landing map shows nearly all of my titular towns:

More about the lack of just plain Eucha in a minute.  Speaking of Eucha, my readers must pronounce it correctly.  Here goes (and repeat after me):  OO-chee.  You may laugh at the local pronunciation, but it’s actually accurate.  More about that in a bit.

Here’s my streams-only map:

As you can see, I landed in the watershed of the Spavinaw Ck; on to the Neosho River (7th hit).  Although not shown, the Neosho makes its way to the Arkansas (134th hit); on to the MM (950th hit).

Some nice round numbers here.  Landing 2450 and Mississippi River watershed hit 950.

Moving on to Google Earth (GE), here’s where I asked the Orange Dude to set up to check out my landing:

And here’s what he sees:

I couldn’t get a decent SV look at Spavinaw Ck, but got a view of Lake Eucha (formed by a dam over the Spavinaw):

And here’s what the OD sees:

I was able to find a GE photo by Priscilla Wenzel of Spavinaw Creek just upstream from the reservoir:

So let’s check out the various Euchas (the OO-chees).  First, we’ll take a look at Google Earth:

There’s plain ol’ Eucha!  It turns out that GE’s Eucha is StreetAtlas’ New Eucha, and StreetAtlas shows nothing where GE shows New Eucha.  I’m going with GE.  Got that?  No?  Don’t worry about it . . . 

Let’s start with Eucha.  From Wiki:

Eucha, pronounced “oochee,” was named for Oochelata, a principal chief of the Cherokees. Eucha, well known for its Indian culture, often has Indian taco sales.

Two things.  First, the chief’s name was Oochelata; ergo, the OO-chee pronunciation is excellent.  Secondly, funny how “Indian taco sales” made it to Wikipedia.

Moving on to New Eucha.  Wiki has nothing to say.

Moving on to Old Eucha.  Wiki has nothing to say.

Oh, well.

Time to move to Jay.  Wiki:

Jay (pop 2,500) is home to numerous Cherokee tribal offices and a health clinic for the Delaware District of the Cherokee Nation.  The city is celebrated as the Huckleberry Capital of the World and has been host to the annual Huckleberry Festival each July 4 weekend since 1967.

The Huckleberry Festival is a big deal – it lasts for three days and has many events that guarantee fun for all, including a frog jumping contest.  Here’s a pic from a June 2018 issue of the Grand Lake News:

The young lad is holding “Froggy,” who won the “largest frog” contest at the 2017 festival.

Back to Wiki:

Jay was named for Jay Washburn, a nephew of Stand Watie.  Around 1908, the exact location of the center of the county was surveyed, with the intention of founding the County Seat.

The survey pinpointed allotment land belonging to Thomas Oochaleta, a full-blood Cherokee. Since acquiring title to a full-blood’s allotment would require a lengthy federal legal procedure, the committee shifted their attention to the allotment adjoining Oochaleta’s on the east, a parcel belonging to committee member Claude L. “Jay” Washbourne.

As a mixed-blood Cherokee, Washbourne was exempt from the federal policy restricting the sale or transfer of his land. He gave ten acres on which to construct a town. The committee quickly constructed a frame building to serve as a post office, and then submitted the required three town names for consideration. The names submitted were “Center,” “Jay,” and “Washbourne.” Postal authorities chose Jay for its brevity.

Stand Watie (Jay’s uncle) was Wiki-clickable:

Stand Watie (Cherokee: Degataga, lit. ‘Stand firm’) (1806 – 1871), was a leader of the Cherokee Nation, and the only Native American to attain a general’s rank in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. [Geez.  I didn’t realize that Indians fought on the Confederate side!]  He commanded the Confederate Indian cavalry made up mostly of Cherokee, Muskogee and Seminole, and was the final Confederate general in the field to cease hostilities at war’s end.

Under Wiki’s “Notable People” was one Buzz Wetzel (great name and cool pic):

Charles “Buzz” Wetzel (1894 – 1941) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball who played briefly for the Philadelphia Athletics during the 1927 season. Listed at 6 ft 1 in, 162 lb., Wetzel was born in Jay, Oklahoma.

Wetzel was 32 years old when he entered the majors on July 27, 1927, and did not have a decision or any strikeouts. Wetzel posted a 7.71 earned run average in two games, including one start, giving up four earned runs on eight hits and five walks in 4 ⅔ innings of work. As a hitter, he went 1-for-1 with a run scored. He pitched his final game on July 28, and never appeared in a major league game again.

At least he made the Bigs, and hey – he batted 1.000!

And check out his Philadelphia A’s jersey.  There must be a story about the elephant, eh?  Well, it turns out that back in 1901, Ben Shibe started a new Philadelphia team to compete (for fans) with the Phillies.  In 1902, John McGraw, the already-very-successful owner of the Baltimore Orioles and then the New York Giants, was asked what he thought of the A’s.  “White Elephant,” he quickly retorted.

For those of you who aren’t sure of the meaning of the term, here’s the Google dictionary’s definition:  “a possession that is useless or troublesome, especially one that is expensive to maintain or difficult to dispose of.”

McGraw kept playing up his quote, and the press picked up on it.  Eventually, the A’s figured what-the-heck, and embraced it as one of their logos in 1909.  They tried to distance themselves from it in 1919, but in 1920 went all in:

There you have it.

Also from Jay is Tommy Morrison “former world heavyweight boxing champion.”  A few points of interest from Wiki:

  • Born in Jay, Morrison (1969 – 2013) spent most of his teenage years in Jay.
  • He began boxing in 1982 (age 13, using a false ID) and had a 202-20 record.
  • He began his professional boxing career in 1988 (at 19).
  • In 1989, Morrison had 19 profesional wins and no losses, 15 by knockout. Actor Sylvester Stallone observed one of Morrison’s bouts. Stallone arranged a script reading and cast Morrison in the movie Rocky V as Tommy “The Machine” Gunn, a young and talented protege of the retired Rocky Balboa. Morrison took a six-month break from boxing to work on the movie in 1990.
  • In 1993, he managed to fight George Foreman in a heavyweight title bout. He won a 12 round decision.
  • After three successful title defenses, he lost a bout (and the title) to Lennox Lewis, as he was knocked out in the sixth round.
  • He died of AIDs at age 44.

I’ll close with this GE photo by Howard Hansen of an Eucha Lake sunset:


That’ll do it . . .




© 2019 A Landing A Day

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Port Sanilac, Michigan

Posted by graywacke on July 4, 2019

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-a-week blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some relatively recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2449; A Landing A Day blog post number 885.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long (N43o 27.758’, W82o 58.804’) puts me in E-Cen Michigan (on Michigan’s “thumb”):

My local landing map shows that I landed in (as I am wont to say) a “veritable plethora” of small towns:


Here’s my streams-only map:

As you can see, I landed in the watershed of the South Branch Cass River (first hit ever!); o to the Cass River (first hit ever!); on to the Saginaw (3rd hit); on to Lake Huron (19th hit).

Moving over to Google Earth (GE), you can see I have excellent GE Street View coverage of my landing:

And here’s what the Orange Dude sees:

The OD had to ramble a couple hundred yards west to get a look at the South Branch:

And here ‘tis:

Of course, I checked out each of the teeny towns on my landing map.  Nothing, nothing, nothing.  At first, Port Sanilac look pretty damn hookless, until I noticed this in Wiki:

The Sanilac Shores Underwater Preserve is a designated shipwreck preserve that is very popular with scuba divers.

The Preserve was Wiki-clickable, so I was off . . .

The Sanilac Shores Underwater Preserve was established to promote conservation of the submerged historical resources in Lake Huron near Port Sanilac, Michigan.

[Submerged historical resources?  Of course, that means shipwrecks.  Enough with the jargon!]

The Sanilac Shores Underwater Preserve spans a total of 163 square miles of Lake Huron. The Michigan Underwater Preserve Council oversees activities relating to all of Michigan’s Underwater Preserves.

The preserve is open to scuba divers.

[OK, but still nothing about shipwrecks.]

Port Sanilac was originally a lumberjack settlement on the shore of Lake Huron named “Bark Shanty Point.” In 1857 the village was renamed to Port Sanilac. Local legend attributes the name to a Wyandotte Indian Chief named Sanilac. Local landmarks include the Port Sanilac lighthouse (burning kerosene from its opening in 1886 until its electrification in 1924) and a twenty-room Victorian mansion (now a museum) built in 1850 by a horse-and-buggy doctor, Dr. Joseph Loop.

There are numerous shipwrecks located near Port Sanilac.


And then, there was this table:


Three of the wrecks were Wiki-clickable:  the Charles S. Price, the Regina, and the Sport. 

The Charles S: Price:

The SS Charles S. Price was a steel hulled ship lost on Lake Huron on November 9, 1913 during the Great Lakes storm of 1913.

[The storm is Wiki-clickable!  More about the storm a little later…]

The Price was found on a day after it foundered with her bow above water, and her stern dipping below. Because of her disposition, the ship’s length could not be measured to make a positive identification of the vessel: the wreck was initially assumed to be the Regina. The vessel was eventually identified as the Price before she sank on 17 November.  In spite of several efforts, the ship was never salvaged.

The SS Regina:

The SS Regina was a steel ship, with a crew of 32. The ship sank during the Great Lakes Storm of 1913 after taking great damage. Lost for more than a half century, she became known as the “Great Mystery of the Great Storm of the Great Lakes”. Since found, she has become an active dive site for scuba divers and is now part of Michigan’s underwater Preserve system.

Sailors initially theorized that Regina collided with Charles S. Price, another ship sunk in the storm, as some of the bodies of Charles S. Price’s crewmen were wearing lifebelts from Regina.  However, this theory was dismissed after Charles S. Price was found capsized on Lake Huron; a diver confirmed that the ship was Charles S. Price and that the ship showed no signs of being in a collision.

And finally, the Sport:

The Sport was a tugboat, built in 1873 and wrecked in 1920 in Lake Huron.  On December 13, 1920, the Sport set out from Port Huron, bound for Harbor Beach. It encountered a heavy gale, and by 6:00 pm was taking on more water than could be pumped out. The seasick and exhausted firetender returned to his bunk, and the boat lost steam, killing the pumps. The crew abandoned ship at about 11:00 pm, and washed ashore near Lexington, still alive.

The wreck of the Sport was discovered in 1987.  In 1992, the Sport became the first Michigan shipwreck with her own Michigan Historical Marker placed on her. The wreck is now part of the Sanilac Shores Underwater Preserve, and popular with divers.  The marker was damaged and removed in 2002.

So what about this 1913 storm?  From Wiki:

The Great Lakes Storm of 1913 (historically referred to as the “Big Blow,” the “Freshwater Fury,” or the “White Hurricane,”) was a blizzard with hurricane-force winds that devastated the Great Lakes from November 7 through November 10, 1913. The storm was most powerful on November 9, battering and overturning ships on four of the five Great Lakes, particularly Lake Huron. Deceptive lulls in the storm and the slow pace of weather reports contributed to the storm’s destructiveness.

The deadliest and most destructive natural disaster to hit the lakes in recorded history, the Great Lakes Storm killed more than 250 people, destroyed 19 ships, and stranded 19 others.

The storm, an extratropical cyclone, originated as the convergence of two major storm fronts, fueled by the lakes’ relatively warm waters. It produced 90 mph wind gusts, waves over 35 feet high, and whiteout snowsqualls.

Here are some Wiki storm shots, starting with this Cleveland street:


Waves breaking on a seawall in Chicago:

And local press coverage:



I’ll close with this lovely GE barn shot from about 4 miles SW of my landing (by Tudor ApMadoc:

That’ll do it . . .




© 2019 A Landing A Day

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