Brendon Baillod

Great Lakes Maritime Historian

Brendon Baillod is an award-winning Great Lakes maritime historian, antiquarian and diver based in Wisconsin. He has been studying Great Lakes maritime history for nearly forty years and has amassed the largest private collection of antiquarian books, maps, and ephemera on the Lakes with material dating to the 1600s. Brendon is the current president of the Wisconsin Underwater Archeology Association and frequently searches for and surveys new underwater cultural sites, especially shipwrecks. He is the author of Fathoms Deep but not Forgotten: Wisconsin Lost Ships, a compendium of over 200 shipwrecks in Wisconsin waters and is the author of the upcoming book Ghosts of the Oceana Coast, Pentwater, Michigan's Shipwreck Graveyard. Brendon is a frequent consultant on shipwreck preservation and interpretation and has appeared on the National Geographic Channel, the Science Channel and the Travel Channel discussing Great Lakes shipwrecks. He is also the creator and administrator of the Great Lakes Shipwreck Research Group, a Facebook community and YouTube channel with over 5000 members and the host of the podcast Great Lakes Shipwrecks LIVE!

Shipwrecks of the Keweenaw Waterway

Michigan’s Portage Lake Ship Canal was once a major artery for Lake Superior commerce. Begun in 1859, this important waterway saw the delivery of untold tons of iron ore, copper and lumber to the industrial cities of the lower Lakes. A surprising number of vessels have left their bones on the bottom of this protected water body, leaving many in a surprising state of preservation. Join Brendon Baillod as he shares the history and underwater archeology of dozens of little known and in many cases, newly discovered shipwrecks that litter the Keweenaw Waterway.


Luncheon Topic:

Revisiting the Bannockburn: Lake Superior’s Flying Dutchman

Join maritime historian Brendon Baillod as he takes a fresh look at the career, loss and probable location of Lake Superior’s most storied and enigmatic shipwreck, the Bannockburn. Although she disappeared on the Lake in 1902, reported sightings of her continued for years and in 1909 Michigan author James Oliver Curwood dubbed her Lake Superior’s Flying Dutchman. Brendon Baillod reinvestigates the Bannockburn using only original archival sources, including many new records not available to earlier historians prior to the information age. This new information sheds considerable new insight into the Bannockburn’s loss and her final resting place.