Give Now NCPR is made possible by
Your Donations

Maritime History in Lake Champlain, Pt. 1:

Wreck Diving off Burlington, Brian Mann, 8/27/01
A trip into history beneath the waters of Lake Champlain—Brian Mann joins a team of divers exploring Lake Champlain's underwater historic preserve.
Listen to story. (7:40)

Above: 140 years ago, the General Butler was blown against the breakwater just offshore from Burlington. The buoys help divers find the wreck in the murky waters of Lake Champlain.


Right: Divemaster Doug Jones gives a few last instructions before Brian's trip down to the General Butler, a canal boat rigged to sail on Lake Champlain

Left: Doug Jones does a last gear check before Brian's descent.

Below: Brian takes to the water. The full wet suit will keep him warm as he descends to forty feet.

Links and Further Information:
New York Department of Environmental Conservation (518) 897-1200
Lake Champlain Maritime Museum (802) 475-2022
Vermont Division for Historic Preservation (802) 828-3051

Important Diving Reminders:
Removal of artifacts from dive sites is forbidden by law. Penetration of wrecks is not permitted. Before diving on the O.J. Walker wreck, an extremely fragile site, please register with the Burlington Community Boat House at (802) 865-3777. On Marine Band Radio, use Channel 74 or 79. Monitor buoyancy at all times to avoid contacts with wrecks.

Important Ecological Reminder:
Diving Activity can spread zebra mussels! These prolific, sharp-shelled molluscs can cover and damage historic shipwrecks and cause severe ecological damage. Transporting zebra mussels is illegal. Between divers in different waterbodies, submerge all equipment in hot tap water (110 degrees or hotter) for at least 10 minutes. For more information, contact the Lake Champlain Basin Program at 1-800-468-5227.