The Storm of September 2, 1905
A terrible gale sweeps Lake Superior, sinking four ships and taking nearly 40 lives. Lost off the Huron Islands are the Iosco and its towbarge Olive Jeanette. Near the Apostle Islands the wooden barge Pretoria is lost after it’s towline is broken from the steamer Venezuela. 10 men escape the vessel only to be battered by the waves near Outer Island. Lighthouse keeper John Irvine jumps into the surf, but can only rescue half of the crew. The steamer Sevona runs aground on a reef near Sand Island, and its after-crew escape in two lifeboats. One rows five miles with ten crew and passengers until being cast ashore by a wave near Little Sand Bay. Another is stranded near the wreck on Sand Island. Seven men in the bow are lost to the waves when the pilothouse plunges into Lake Superior.
Today the wrecks of the Pretoria and Sevona are regularly visited by divers. The Olive Jeanette was only discovered a decade ago, some 6 miles off Huron Island. The Iosco’s location is still unknown.