Metamora (shipwreck)

The above-water remains of the wreck of the tug Metamora. Visible is the ship′s boiler, which has been painted white and has a channel marker attached to it as a hazard warning.
Name: Metamora
Builder: Peck & Masters, Cleveland
Completed: 1864
Fate: Ran into a shallow shoal off of Turning Island, Georgian Bay, September 29, 1907[1]
Status: Sunk
General characteristics
Class and type: Tug
Tonnage: 300 tons
Length: 121 feet
Beam: 21 feet
Installed power: Steam

The Metamora was a wooden tug commissioned in 1864 and used predominantly for ferrying passengers and goods in the Georgian Bay area of Ontario. It ran onto a shallow shoal near Turning Island in Georgian Bay on July 30, 1907, caught fire and sank in six feet of water.[2]

She was constructed at the Peck & Masters shipyard in Cleveland, Ohio in 1864.[1] The ship was 121 feet long, and 21 feet wide, and displaced about 300 tons.[1] The Metamora was originally fitted out with armour-plating and a cannon, and was tasked with patrolling the waters of what was then Upper Canada for Fenian raiders.[2] These were removed in the 1870s, when the Fenian threat had diminished, and the Metamora then plied the waters of Georgian Bay as a freighter and passenger vessel.[2]

Sinking and wreck

On September 29, 1907 the Metamora was towing a boom, bound for the mill town of Byng Inlet, when she struck a shallow shoal just west of Turning Island, relatively near Pointe au Baril. She caught fire and sank in shallow water, with all of her crew and passengers surviving by swimming the relatively short distance to shore.[2]

For many years afterward a portion of the upper deck that did not burn was visible above the water. Currently the Metamora's boiler is the only portion of the ship that can still be seen above the surface. It is known locally as "The Wreck".[2] The boiler has been painted white and a channel marker has been attached to it as a hazard warning for the boats that travel in this area. The shallow waters have also made the ship a favourite haunt for scuba divers.[3] The wreck is located at 45°31′43.39″N 80°24′26.61″W / 45.5287194°N 80.4073917°W / 45.5287194; -80.4073917.


  1. 1 2 3 "Metamora". BGSU. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Curtis, Andrea (May 11, 2004). "Into the Blue". Into the Blue. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
  3. "Parry Sound Public Library, Wrecks: The "Metamora"". Parry Sound Public Library. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
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