The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Atlantic (Steamboat), 30 Jun 1856

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SAFE OF THE ATLANTIC RAISED. - We learn that the raising of the safe of the
ATLANTIC, says the Detroit Free Press, which was sunk with that vessel about four years ago on Lake Erie, and the rescue of which has heretofore defied the efforts of all submarine operators, has at last been accomplished by the company recently employed in that behalf. The safe, it will be recollected, belonged to the American Express, and contained considerable money. The particulars of the raising we have not received.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      June 28, 1856

      . . . . .

      RAISING THE SAFE OF THE ATLANTIC. - A diver from Buffalo, in connection with a company, has at last succeeded in recovering the safe of the American Express Co., which has been lying in the sunken steamer ATLANTIC for the last four or five years. In the office he found the safe, and was enabled to move it with ease, and took it upon deck, where the grappling irons were fastened on, and the prize brought safely to the light. Upon opening the safe, it displayed its contents in a perfect state of preservation. There was in the safe $5,000 in gold, $3,000 in bills of the government Stock Bank, and a large amount of bills on other Banks, amounting in all to about $36,000. The papers were uninjured, except that they smelled very strongly of decayed human bodies, as if it had laid for so many years in a coffin with their owner. Of course, all this money goes to the persons interested in this wonderful adventure.
      The Detroit Advertiser adds the following to the above news, which is a rare piece of information for scientific men and sextors: - "The diver was protected by copper armor, and was under water forty minutes, during which time he had some strange adventures. The upper deck of the steamer lies one hundred and sixty feet under water, and far below where there is any current or motion. Everything is therefore exactly as it first went down. When the diver alighted upon the deck he was saluted by a beautiful lady, whose clothing was well arranged, and her hair elegantly dressed. As he approached her the motion of the water caused an oscillation of her head as if gracefully bowing to him. She was standing erect with one hand grasping the rigging.
Around lay the bodies of several others as if sleeping. Children holding their friends by the hand, and mothers with their babes in their arms, were there. In the cabin the furniture was still untouched by decay, and to all appearance had just been arranged by some careful and tasteful hand."
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      June 30, 1856

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salvage of the safe
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William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Atlantic (Steamboat), 30 Jun 1856