WHITEFISH POINT, MICH.- The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS) is proud to announce the discovery of the 292-foot Whaleback vessel, Barge 129. Barge 129 was found in Lake Superior, 35 miles off Vermilion Point in 650 feet of water.

Barge 129 was found along with 8 other wrecks in 2021 by the GLSHS in partnership with Marine Sonic Technology using Side Scan Sonar.

Barge 129 sank on October 13th, 1902 – 120 years-ago!  Barge 129 was in tow of the steamer Maunaloa, downbound with a load of iron ore, when they ran into a powerful October storm. The heavy seas strained, and eventually snapped the towline connecting the two ships. Barge 129 was then at the mercy of the storm. Maunaloa turned around in an attempt to reconnect the towline, but the wind and waves slammed the two ships together, with Maunaloa’s port side anchor ripping into Barge 129’s starboard side. As the barge began to sink, Captain Josiah Bailey and his crew moved quickly and struggled to launch their lifeboat. The crew of Maunaloa stood by, and eventually helped the Barge 129 crew onto their ship…just as the whaleback dove to the bottom of Lake Superior.

Barge 129 loading coal