Ithaca (ship)

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Ithaca, aground near Churchill, Manitoba.

The Ithaca was a small freighter that ran aground in Bird Cove 12 or 15 kilometres distant from Churchill, Manitoba -- the only port in North America on the Arctic Ocean.[1] She was built in 1922, and ran aground during a storm on September 14, 1960.

in 1960 she was a Greek-flagged vessel, when she was hired to transport ore from a nickel mine in Rankin Inlet in what is now Nunavut.[2] She had delivered her first shipment of 3,000 tons of ore to Churchill, and had loaded a small amount of mining equipment and a building supplies, for a return trip, but she encountered a storm with 80 mile per hour winds. The captain turned back to the safety of the port. But the weather was so bad that he decided to drop anchor. The anchor chain broke and her rudder was beaten off. Completely out of control the vessel was driven onto a shallow gravel-bank 750 metres off shore.

Her bottom was completely ripped out when the storm pounded her on the gravel bank.[2] Lloyds of London wrote off the vessel as a complete loss. All 37 crew members survived. The water was shallow enough that individuals could walk to the wreck, at low tide. Her cargo was salwaged.

Tourists occasionally visit the wreck.[2]

Frazer Brace Ltd, of Trois Rivieres, Quebec
   gross tonnage
260 feet
   previous names   
Frank A Augsbury
Parita 2
Lawrence Cliffe Hall
Federal Explorer


  1. Historic Sites of Manitoba: MV Ithaca (Churchill), The Manitoba Histrical Society, 2013.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 The Ithaca Shipwreck, 2009-10-07. Retrieved on 2013-04-15.