D ozens of Great Lakes explorers are setting up shop in Charlevoix, getting ready for the expedition of a lifetime.
I n recent years , the Great Lakes Exploration Group discovered a historic shipwreck in Lake Michigan that they believe is the famous French vessel known as Le Griffon that sunk in 1679.
" The next step is to go down and see what we have in that means getting in their and uncovering it ," Great Lakes Exploration Group President Steve Libert explained.
N ext friday , L ibert and his team will take France's top underwater archaeologists out to the site and will finally get an answer.
" Hopefully the French archaeologist will be able to look at the construction of the deck and say, yes this is French made," Libert said.
I f the ship is identified as the Le Griffon, work stops and preservation begins.
" If it is the Le Griffon, I don't own it, France does," Libert explained. "Hopefully they will give us a 99 year lease and we will be able to go ahead and offer our opinion on what to do with it."
S uch a project takes a lot of work and requires a variety of resources. T he City of Charlevoix is happy to host these explorers and are hopeful for the possibility of a historic discovery.
" We are just happy to be working with Mr. Libert on the ground level of his efforts and are looking forward to hearing exactly the history of the ship and what happens to it In the future," Charlevoix City Manager Rob Straebel said.
And there is always the possibility the wreckage is not the Le Griffon, but no matter what, Libert says the findings will answer some mystery left buried in the Great Lakes.
" If it's not the Le Griffon that is still a very ancient wreck and is definitely one the oldest on the Great Lakes," Libert said.
T his team is full of the nation's leading scientists and underwater archaeologist s, some of which also worked on unraveling the mystery behind the Titanic shipwreck.