Great Lakes Maritime Institute
Detroit Lodge No. 7
work to preserve relics from the Storm of 1913


The Great Lakes Maritime Institute is preparing to remember the tragic Storm of 1913, which many consider to be the worst maritime disaster on the Great Lakes. In November 2013, it will be one century ago that the storm wreaked havoc on more than a dozen steel freighters and over 200 sailors lost their lives.

As part of this remembrance, the Great Lakes Maritime Institute is working with commercial diver Wayne Brusate who recovered artifacts form the Canadian steamer REGINA in the mid 1980’s. The diving operations were conducted under a State of Michigan salvage permit and included parts of the cargo and artifacts from the vessel.

Wayne Brusate is donating a number of artifacts from the vessel, and it’s cargo as a fundraiser for the Great Lakes Maritime Institute. The unique relics from the Storm of 1913 will be available of viewing and purchase at the GLMI’s Annual Dinner which will be held on October 27, 2013 at Blossom Heath in St. Clair Shores.

On August 20, 2013, volunteers from Detroit Lodge No. 7 spent a day working to prepare the artifacts for display.  Shipmasters and friends met at the J. W. Westcott Company’s office at the foot of 24th Street.  Under the direction of John Polacsek, Mike Nall, Jim Lawler, Louis Nardi, Dominic Gorno, and Sal Randazzo were involved in lightly cleaning and wrapping a variety of artifacts from the cargo. 

The artifacts include bottles of G. H. Mumm champagne, Whyte & McKay Scotch bottles, Heinz Ketchup bottles, various British glass containers, and A. S.  Hinds hand cream from Portland, Maine. Some of the bottles still contain their original contents, while others show the marks that the drifting sands and  75 years on the bottom of Lake Huron have left.

Click on photos to enlarge

  G. H. Mumm Champagne.
Bottles of G. H. Mumm Champagne.

A.S. Hinds Hand cream bottles.

Mike Nall &  Jim Lawler cleaning artifacts form the Storm of 1913.



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