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Wayne State University Press

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Graveyard of the Lakes

Mark L. Thompson

Great Lakes, Maritime Studies, Michigan

Great Lakes Books Series

Paperback
Published: April 2004
ISBN: 9780814332269
Pages: 424 Size: 6x9
Illustrations: 64 black and white images
eBOOK
Published: April 2004
ISBN: 9780814339411
Review

Mark Thompson sets out to construct an historically accurate well-rounded picture of shipwrecks on the Great Lakes. To explain the causes of these events he graphically blends aspects of history and human nature with a broad view of economics, politics, and marine technical advance.

— Bradley A. Rogers

For the first time, a historian and seasoned mariner looks beyond the specific circumstances of individual shipwrecks in an effort to reach a clearer understanding of the economic, political, and psychological factors that have influenced the 25,000 wrecks on the Great Lakes over the past 300 years. Looking at the entire tragic history of shipwrecks on North America's expansive inland seas, from the 1679 loss of the Griffon to the mysterious sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald in 1975, Mark L. Thompson concludes that a wreck is not an isolated event. In Graveyard of the Lakes, Thompson suggests that most of the accidents and deaths on the lakes have been the result of human error, ranging from simple mistakes to gross incompetence. In addition to his compelling analysis of the causes of shipwrecks, Thompson includes factual accounts of more than one hundred wrecks. Graveyard of the Lakes will forever change the reader's perspective on shipwrecks.

Mark L. Thompson, a former college professor and administrator, spends most of the year working as an officer aboard the ships of the USS Great Lakes Fleet, Inc. He is also the author of A Sailor’s Logbook: A Season aboard Great Lakes Freighters (Wayne State University Press, 1999), Queen of the Lakes (Wayne State University Press, 1994) and Steamboats and Sailors of the Great Lakes (Wayne State University Press, 1991).

Mark Thompson sets out to construct an historically accurate well-rounded picture of shipwrecks on the Great Lakes. To explain the causes of these events he graphically blends aspects of history and human nature with a broad view of economics, politics, and marine technical advance.

– Bradley A. Rogers, East Carolina University