Wisconsin's Great Lakes Shipwrecks - Explore Shipwrecks - Christina Nilsson
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Preserving the Christina Nilsson

Because of its historical and archaeological significance, the Christina Nilsson was nominated to the National Register of Historic Places in 2003. The two separated sections of the Nilsson are structurally intact and well preserved, providing a unique glimpse into the design, construction, and workmanship of post-Civil War Great Lakes schooners. Built in 1871, the vessel represents the apex of Great Lakes schooner construction and deomonstrates what skilled Wisconsin shipwrights could create from bountiful, local timber. Few construction plans for Great Lakes schooners built prior to 1880 have survived, making the Nilsson an important a source of archaeological data as well as a tangible icon of nineteenth-century waterborne trade on the Great Lakes.

Title to Wisconsin's historic shipwrecks is held in public trust by the State of Wisconsin for the benefit of all - both divers and non-divers. Consequently, the general public should be able to share equally in the discovery, exploration and appreciation of Wisconsin's historic shipwrecks. Archaeologists from the WHS and the Wisconsin Underwater Archaeology Association (WUAA) have been investigating the Christina Nilsson shipwreck site since its discovery in 1997. Much of the archaeological and historical information generated between 1997 and 2003 is being "repackaged" for outreach and education initiatives. These interpretive materials stress the historic value of the shipwreck and encourage divers to adhere to "zero impact" diving practices.

Please help preserve this invaluable piece of our maritime heritage. If you visit the Christina Nilsson, please take only pictures and leave only bubbles.

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