Lake Ontario Wrecks


The recovery of a 26 foot fishing boat that sank in Lake Ontario in 147 feet of water.

Chris Martin was hired to retrieve this boat that sank in Lake Ontario in the season of 2019.  Tim and Dennis assisted Chris in locating the boat and doing an underwater ROV survey of the site.  After this survey was completed Chris was able to put a plan together to safely retrieve the vessel.  There were a few weather delays but other than that the operation was a total success.


  Discovered in deep water of Lake Ontario.

 By Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber on June 19, 2019.    More

 Our first discovery of the 2019 season.

The wreck of the Onondaga found off Stony Point on May 4, 2019 by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber. The Onondaga was a 3-mast wood schooner 137 feet in length built in 1870 then converted to a schooner barge in 1883. She left Oswego on November 5, 1907 in heavy seas on route to Montreal. The Onondaga ran into seas that was one of the heaviest of the year and sprung a leak. All efforts were made to reach Sackets Harbor, but the barge sank off Stony Point with 632 tons of coal in her bulk.

She now lies upright on the bottom with her port side blown out.   Other than that she is remarkably intact with an anchor hanging from her bow and a boom still standing for offloading cargo.


Two Smokestacks to the Steamer Wisconsin discovered in Lake Ontario.

On the 19th day of May 1867 the steamer Wisconsin left Cape Vincent on route to Chicago with passengers and freight. About a mile or so off Tibbetts Point Lighthouse fire was discovered in the boiler room.  All efforts of the crew to gain control of the fire were unsuccessful.  The captain decided to beach the steamer on Grenadier Island but before reaching the island the steamer had become almost fully involved in flames.  The steamer Wisconsin was a total loss. 22 bodies were recovered the following day and brought to Cape Vincent on the steamer Pierrepont.

One hundred fifty years later, Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber found the two smokestacks of the Wisconsin two and a half miles off Tibbetts Point Lighthouse in 85 feet of water.  The smokestacks had fallen overboard as the fire burned around the support cables.



New Discovery on September 16, 2017.  (The Wreck of the Hiawatha, Schooner Barge that sank on September 20, 1917.)


It was 4 AM Saturday morning when this image appears on the screen during a routine sonar expedition in Lake Ontario by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber.   There was a dive done two weeks after the discovery by Tim Caza and John Shaheen. The wreck is 95 feet below the surface she is 70% intact and her Specs were 170x30x12  with a cargo of hard coal aboard.





The wreck of the H.B. sunk on October 17,1912.  Schooner-barge, wood, bulk freight, 3-mast.

About twenty miles out in Lake Ontario Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber found the H.B. and the Menominee on July 8, 2016 in 90 to 100 feet of water.  Four persons lost their lives, J.D. Schamp, Steven Lebux, Fred Lahance, all Canadians, and Alice Derusha, the 16 year old daughter of the captain, John Derusha, of the H.B. The ill-fated schooner barge, with two others, was being towed from Oswego to Ogdensburg loaded with coal. The towline broke during a heavy windstorm and the  H.B. and the Menominee went adrift. In a short time the H.B. went down. Her Specs were 176x34x13.

More         Video




The wreck of the Menominee, sunk on October 17,1912

Twenty miles out in Lake Ontario, the steamer Nicaragua sighted the Menominee and the Tug Proctor with the Barge Buckley and towed the tug and the Buckley to Cape Vincent. As the Proctor was returning to help the Menominee, it stopped to pick up Captain Derusha and his son, Elmer, who were afloat on the hatchway of the H.B.  The Proctor did not arrive in time to help the Menominee and it sank to the bottom.  Fortunately, the Proctor did rescue the crew.  The Menominee is split wide open on the bottom, dumping all her cargo of coal.

More      Video



Old Steamer

Steamer found  by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber 8 miles out in the Lake.  The steamer is in 90 feet of water and it appears to have burned to the water line. Found on Sept. 23, 2015.    

  More       Video


The wreck of the North Star, sunk on Nov 26, 1886

She was a wood schooner built in 1854 in Waterbury, Port Dover, Ontario.  Her specs were 98x28x8, 149gc.  She sank in high winds off Stony Island in Lake Ontario with a cargo of coal and was a total loss.  Tim Caza found the North Star on September 4, 2014.  The vessel is intact with the bowsprit broken off and lying on the bottom of the lake.  The main boom is lying across the starboard backside of the vessel.       More



The wreck of the American sunk on October 1, 1894

The American was a wood schooner built in 1870, Asa Wilcox, Three Mile Bay, NY.  The specs were 137x26x10, 269n.  She was bound for Prescott, Ontario, in tow by the Tug Proctor.  She sank for unreported reasons off Stony Point with a cargo of coal aboard.  The wreck is mostly intact. Originally pinged with sonar by Tim Shippee and Dennis Gerber in August of 2008.  New sonar images and photographs were taken on September 4, 2014.




The wreck of the J.W. Langmuir sunk on October 7, 1875

The J.W. Langmuir was a wood, two-masted schooner built in 1865 as a brig in Picton,Ontario.   Her specs were 88x21x9, 116t.  Major repairs were done in 1868.  It is possible it was converted from a brig to a schooner at that time.   Bound for Oswego from Picton, she was 8 miles off the Port of Oswego when she became unmanageable due to taking on water.   She was driven back to the shoal at the head of Gallo Island and grounded, then broke up.  Her crew made it to shore in her yawl.  Later she was stripped and relieved of her cargo by the schooner Sassacus and Tug Wheeler.  Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber picked up the wreck on sonar on September 19, 2014. 


Sea Ray Sedan Bridge

Fire burned through the hull on a Sea Ray the vessel sank in 48 feet of water in Sackets Harbor.



Wreck of the S.S. Ellsworth, sunk on July 9,1877

The Ellsworth was built in 1869 on Seneca Lake as a sailing vessel.  In 1870 she was fitted up as a steam vessel.  She was on a ten day cruise among the islands at the head of the St. Lawrence and vicinity.  The Ellsworth was at anchor off Stony Island in about 21 feet of water.   A fire broke out in the kitchen causing the vessel to burn to the water line.  She now lies in 21 feet of water off Stony Island. 


Old Schooner

Unknown old schooner found by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber on July 28, 2015.






The Rum Runner

Tim Downing found this vessel with side scan sonar off Grenadier Island in Lake Ontario.  It is a fantailed launch and full of bottles from prohibition days.






Cabin Cruiser

Found December 8, 2015 in Lake Ontario by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber in 68 feet of water.





Cargo barge found on June 16, 2016 by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber on a         routine scanning expedition. The vessel is 100 feet x 40 feet.  It is totally intact, and lies in 80 feet of water.





Light Beacon

Light beacon found in Lake Ontario 56 feet below by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber on July 8, 2016. The light stands upright on the bottom 20 feet tall and 36 feet from the top of the light to the surface of the water. This was a very interesting discovery.

More      Video





House boat

Old House boat in Chaumon Bay sonar scan taken on August 18, 2016 vintage 1960's.






Twenty foot fishing boat

Found on September 21, 2016 by Tim Caza and Dennis Gerber in 65 feet of water.  The boat is an inboard and has two fishing poles stil in the craft.  A tackle box lies about 70 feet behind the vessel.