18th Century Warship Found

The H.M.S. Ontario, a British warship that sank in 1780, has been found 500 feet under the water’s surface in Lake Ontario, just off the coast of New York.

The British used this 80-foot brig-sloop during the American Revolution, but it sank during a storm on Oct. 31, 1780. The Ontario was carrying about 120 people from Fort Niagara to Rochester, N.Y., when it went down. Great Lakes wreck hunters are calling its discovery the “holy grail”.

Jim Kennard and Dan Scoville discovered the ship. They say it is in remarkable condition, perhaps because of the cold water and absence of oxygen at that depth. The ship is still considered the property of Great Britain.

Click here to see images of the ship underwater.


  1. This is really exciting, because I thought that no more very old war vessels were still under the sea! This whole idea makes me wonder more about the American Revolution and the people on that ship. Were any of the people survivors of the accident? Would I recognize any famous names of passengers on the ship? Were any items found things that uncovered something unknown about the past and the people who used to be here in the 18th century? This shi,p though very old and not completely salvageable, is something that could lead to a lot more knowledge about the revolution!

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