Sunken Keystone State found in Lake Huron

Sunken Keystone State found in Lake Huron

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(WJBK) -

"When you virtually have thought that you would never find something you were looking for, and finally it comes up and you find it, you say 'Wow.'"

After 20 years David Trotter and his team of divers finally found it - the Keystone State shipwreck in the waters of Lake Huron near Alpena. The steamer was one of the finest to travel the Great Lakes in the 1800s.

"She was called a palace steamer because she was of very ornate design and had very comfortable accommodations for passengers that could afford that kind of travel," Trotter explains.

But in 1861 the Keystone State embarked on what many saw as a strange trip. The vessel and its crew left Detroit headed to Milwaukee in the chilly month of November allegedly hauling farm equipment, but some say it was actually carrying a secret Civil War shipment.

The rough waters were too much for the Keystone State. The ship and the 33 on board vanished into Lake Huron.

Trotter and his divers have discovered more than 100 ships but this, he says, is one of his biggest finds.

"You realize sometimes that it's only just sheer 99 percent perspiration and 1 percent inspiration that will make success," he says.

Trotter tells Fox 2's Alexis Wiley he intends to return to the wreckage. Meanwhile he's putting together a program on the history and the discovery of the Keystone State.

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