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France Says it Owns Legendary Vessel (Court Case Over 17th Century Ship in Lake Michigan)
The Mining Journal ^ | January 30, 2009 | JOHN FLESHER

Posted on 02/02/2009 10:57:34 AM PST by nickcarraway

TRAVERSE CITY - The French government says it still owns the Griffin, a 17th century ship built by legendary explorer La Salle that may have been discovered in northern Lake Michigan.

France filed a claim to the vessel Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids, escalating a legal battle over who owns and has authority to retrieve artifacts from the long-lost vessel.

Michigan also is seeking title, although state officials have raised doubts about whether the Griffin's gravesite actually has been found. They say federal law gives the state ownership of abandoned vessels embedded in its Great Lakes bottomlands.

A private group, Great Lakes Exploration LLC, located what it contends may be the Griffin's wreckage in 2001. It wants to be appointed custodian until the courts determine ownership and salvage rights.

The precise site has not been publicly revealed, but is believed to be between Escanaba and the St. Martin Islands, near Wisconsin.

The Griffin (also spelled ''Griffon'') disappeared on its maiden voyage in 1679 after embarking from an island near Green Bay, Wis., with a crew of six and a cargo of furs and other goods.

France filed paperwork with the court this week to meet a deadline for avoiding loss of rights to the ship, a spokesman for the French embassy in Washington said Thursday.

The claim is based on documents showing the fatal expedition was undertaken on behalf of the French crown and was not a private venture, the spokesman said.

Steve Libert, spokesman for Great Lakes Exploration, backs the claim.

''Michigan isn't fighting just me any more. They're fighting the country of France,'' he said.

Matt Frendewey, spokesman for the Michigan attorney general's office, said state officials were reviewing the French court filing and would respond later.

In a motion filed last month, Michigan asked federal judge Robert Holmes Bell to declare the wreckage - if it exists - state property. Assistant Attorney General Louis Reinwasser said divers visited the site in October and found only a timber protruding from the lake bottom.

Ken Vrana, director of the Lansing-based Maritime Center, said a sonar examination of the site in 2006 detected numerous artifacts on the bottom and embedded in sediments.

His nonprofit scientific and educational organization is working with Libert on plans for a remote sensing expedition this summer in hopes of identifying the artifacts. France's director of underwater archaeology has endorsed the mission, Vrana said.

''I would still love to do it on a cooperative basis with the state of Michigan and I'm perplexed as to why they are resisting,'' he said.


TOPICS: History; Local News; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: archaeology; canada; france; frederickmonroe; godsgravesglyphs; grandrapids; greenbay; griffon; kevindykstra; lakemichigan; legriffon; michigan; muskegon; niagarafalls; ontario; renerobertcavelier; sieurdelasalle; treasurehunters; wisconsin

1 posted on 02/02/2009 10:57:34 AM PST by nickcarraway
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To: SunkenCiv

Ping


2 posted on 02/02/2009 10:57:58 AM PST by nickcarraway (Are the Good Times Really Over?)
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To: Cincinna

Ping.


3 posted on 02/02/2009 10:58:43 AM PST by Army Air Corps (Four fried chickens and a coke)
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To: nickcarraway

I thought that the French lost in the French and Indian War. Do they still own Lake Michigan? I think it is outrageous when foreign governments claim ownership of vessels long ago sunk in international waters. This case provides a new dimension to the outrageous claims.


4 posted on 02/02/2009 11:04:35 AM PST by businessprofessor
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To: businessprofessor

If its in US water, its ours. The Ed Fitz is in Canadian water. They have domain.


5 posted on 02/02/2009 11:06:15 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: nickcarraway

I say let France have the damn thing. First though, there’s this little matter of rent....


6 posted on 02/02/2009 11:08:19 AM PST by domeika
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To: nickcarraway

OK, I give up. Properly speaking this ought to be turned over to the French King. When he turns up, call me.


7 posted on 02/02/2009 11:09:44 AM PST by Billthedrill
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To: nickcarraway

Isn’t there a statute of limitations on stuff like this?


8 posted on 02/02/2009 11:11:14 AM PST by Larry Lucido
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To: businessprofessor

The reason why the Fwench are interested and in a fighting mood (the irony) is that there is something of value buried WITHIN the ship, hence the argument it’s theirs.


9 posted on 02/02/2009 11:16:57 AM PST by max americana
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To: Billthedrill
OK, I give up. Properly speaking this ought to be turned over to the French King. When he turns up, call me.

He cannot speak to you because his head is missing. Maybe his queen can speak with you. Oops. Her head is also missing.

10 posted on 02/02/2009 11:23:51 AM PST by businessprofessor
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To: nickcarraway

so that’ll be 4 centuries of rent then


11 posted on 02/02/2009 11:24:46 AM PST by chuck_the_tv_out
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To: businessprofessor

Lake Michigan is not “International Waters”. It lies wholly within the United States and borders Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin. None of the Great Lakes are International Waters, they belong either to the US or Canada.


12 posted on 02/02/2009 11:46:24 AM PST by anoldafvet
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To: nickcarraway

It just goes to show.........if you find it, just shut up and dig it up or every greedy governmental body in the world will claim that it belongs to them.


13 posted on 02/02/2009 11:53:55 AM PST by Sarajevo (You're just jealous because the voices only talk to me.)
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To: nickcarraway
This bit about ownership of shipwrecks has gotten really muddled in the past several years. In 1998 the US Courts ruled on 2 Spanish shipwrecks in Virginia waters, Juno (1802) & La Galga (1750), that they remained Spanish ownership because the Spanish Government had never abandoned 'title'. This ruling would be what the French claim rests upon.

The concept behind this was that 'sovereign' wrecks (ie. governmentally owned or chartered) remain owned to protect as graveyards and memorials. If the late Mel Fisher, salvor of the Spanish "Nuestra Señora de Atocha" (1622), were to discover the ship today it is probable he could not have salvaged it without the cooperation of the Spanish Government.

In international waters it becomes more dicey as not every shipwreck is readily identifiable. A US Treasure Hunting company, Odyssey Marine, is in legal battle with Spain over treasure recovered from the international waters in the Atlantic known as the "Black Swan Project". The number of governmental 'toes' being negotiated is enough to make you wonder if anybody other than lawyers will win in the end of this case.

14 posted on 02/02/2009 12:04:05 PM PST by SES1066 (Cycling to conserve, Conservative to save, Saving to Retire, will Retire to Cycle.)
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To: domeika
I say let France have the damn thing. First though, there’s this little matter of rent....

LOL, I was thinking the same thing, storage fees, plus interest and penalties for late payments.

15 posted on 02/02/2009 12:43:33 PM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: SES1066

“In 1998 the US Courts ruled on 2 Spanish shipwrecks in Virginia waters, Juno (1802) & La Galga (1750), that they remained Spanish ownership because the Spanish Government had never abandoned ‘title’.”

What is being said here is that U.S. shot itself in the foot again.


16 posted on 02/02/2009 12:52:58 PM PST by Gatún(CraigIsaMangoTreeLawyer)
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To: nickcarraway; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1ofmanyfree; 21twelve; 24Karet; ...

· join list or digest · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post a topic ·

 
Gods
Graves
Glyphs
Thanks nickcarraway.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach
 

· Google · Archaeologica · ArchaeoBlog · Archaeology · Biblical Archaeology Society ·
· Discover · Nat Geographic · Texas AM Anthro News · Yahoo Anthro & Archaeo ·
· The Archaeology Channel · Excerpt, or Link only? · cgk's list of ping lists ·


17 posted on 02/02/2009 5:52:08 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/____________________ Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: grellis
France claims rights to Lake Michigan shipwreck
by John Flesher
Associated Press
January 30, 2009

18 posted on 02/02/2009 5:54:15 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/____________________ Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: Springman; sergeantdave; cyclotic; netmilsmom; RatsDawg; PGalt; FreedomHammer; queenkathy; ...
If you would like to be added or dropped from the Michigan ping list, please freepmail me.

Damn troublemaking surrender monkeys. Sick a couple of fifth graders on 'em, they'll back down.

19 posted on 02/02/2009 6:03:48 PM PST by grellis (I am Jill's overwhelming sense of disgust.)
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To: nickcarraway

WHICH French “government” (and I use the term loosely) claims it?

Monarchy?

Empire?

Restored Monarachy?

1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th Republic?

Vichy?

Free French?

5th Column-—I mean Republic?

Quebequios?


20 posted on 02/02/2009 6:39:07 PM PST by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: nickcarraway

What say we tell the French to piss off? What are they gonna do, really? Throw a glass of wine at us? Lol. Cheese eating surrender monkeys anyhow.


21 posted on 02/03/2009 3:51:23 AM PST by dware (3 prohibited topics in mixed company: politics, religion and operating systems...)
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To: domeika

not to mention the fines for a couple hundred counts of littering.


22 posted on 02/03/2009 4:08:02 AM PST by absolootezer0 (thank God for Chicago: makes Detroit look wholesome by comparison.)
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To: nickcarraway

Governments are pigs. They want to own everything - you, your family, your money, your property.

If you find something of value, keep it. Or sell it.

I found a couple of valuable artifacts with a metal detector years ago. I notified the state. A few days later a fat slob bureaucrat showed up and said he would take the artifacts for display in a state museum. When I stopped at the museum to look at the artifacts, only one was on display. The other was “missing.” The museum claimed it received only one piece.

At that time I was young and foolish. Never asked for a receipt but trusted governmemt to do the right thing. And so started my journey of never trusting so-called government.

And for that insufferable pig of a state attorney general to make a claim on the treasure is not the least surprising. The RINO SOB refuses to file any charges against the politicians and bureaucrats brazenly robbing communities and individuals.


23 posted on 02/03/2009 4:28:12 AM PST by sergeantdave (nobama is the anti-Lincoln who will re-institute slavery to government)
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To: nickcarraway

I don’t think so... If they think they own it, they can come and get it.


24 posted on 02/03/2009 6:03:23 AM PST by Little Ray (Do we have a Plan B?)
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To: nickcarraway; Army Air Corps; SunkenCiv; nctexan; MassachusettsGOP; paudio; ronnie raygun; ...

Chapeau! to NickCarraway for posting this fascinating story, and to SunkenCiv and ArmyAirCorps for the PING.

FRENCH POILIYICS AND CULTURE PING LIST. FReepMail ME IF YOU WANT TO JOIN!

Any experts in Maritime Law here?


25 posted on 02/04/2009 12:22:39 AM PST by Cincinna (TIME TO REBUILD * JINDAL* PALIN * CANTOR 2012)
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To: nickcarraway; Army Air Corps; SunkenCiv; nctexan; MassachusettsGOP; paudio; ronnie raygun; ...

Chapeau! to NickCarraway for posting this fascinating story, and to SunkenCiv and ArmyAirCorps for the PING.

FRENCH POLITICS AND CULTURE PING LIST. FReepMail ME IF YOU WANT TO JOIN!

Any experts in Maritime Law here?


26 posted on 02/04/2009 12:23:25 AM PST by Cincinna (TIME TO REBUILD * JINDAL* PALIN * CANTOR 2012)
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To: ApplegateRanch

The ship was owned by the French State under the Monarchy of Louis XIV. The State in France is viewed as a continuous entity from Monarchy to Veme Republique.

Would Maritime Law apply to these waters?

I say let whomever will pay to raise it, preserve it, and place a museum around it, claim it.


27 posted on 02/04/2009 12:28:30 AM PST by Cincinna (TIME TO REBUILD * JINDAL* PALIN * CANTOR 2012)
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To: nickcarraway
The claim is based on documents showing the fatal expedition was undertaken on behalf of the French crown...

To echo the sentiment expressed in above posts, the French probably should have thought about this before they cut their heads off...

28 posted on 02/04/2009 1:33:43 AM PST by Caipirabob (Communists... Socialists... Democrats...Traitors... Who can tell the difference?)
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To: Cincinna

Thanks for keeping me on the ping. This is very interesting.


29 posted on 02/04/2009 4:17:00 AM PST by nctexan
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To: SES1066
Very good and concise recapitulation of the legal affairs surrounding the maritime treasure finds.

One may mention (although it is implicit in your post) that this has very much to to do with greed - greed of the various states/governments. For instance Spain which is so keen to protect its national heritage on international waters, "strangely" enough also claims ownership of the British wreck HMS Sussex that lies off Gibraltar in international waters.

30 posted on 02/04/2009 11:12:13 AM PST by ScaniaBoy (Part of the Right Wing Research & Attack Machine)
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To: ScaniaBoy
For instance Spain which is so keen to protect its national heritage on international waters, "strangely" enough also claims ownership of the British wreck HMS Sussex that lies off Gibraltar in international waters.

Anyone who expects consistency from ANY GOVERNMENT in any area OTHER THAN in its own interests is fooling themselves into the mad house! As Machiavelli stated in "The Prince" the Prince / State (The State is I - Sun King Louis of France), the State has only self-interest!

31 posted on 02/04/2009 2:48:27 PM PST by SES1066 (Cycling to conserve, Conservative to save, Saving to Retire, will Retire to Cycle.)
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To: anoldafvet

That was his point.


32 posted on 02/04/2009 3:00:06 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

I can’t believe my first thought was, “I wonder if it’s anywhere near the Ed
Fits?”

LOL


33 posted on 02/04/2009 6:44:26 PM PST by GEC (We're not drilling in ANWR because....)
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To: cripplecreek; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; ...
Note: this topic is from 2009.
Update: Related topic:

34 posted on 02/18/2015 3:20:33 PM PST by SunkenCiv (What do we want? REGIME CHANGE! When do we want it? NOW!)
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To: cripplecreek

MI ping.


35 posted on 02/18/2015 3:21:33 PM PST by Squawk 8888 (Will steal your comments & post them on Twitter)
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To: GreyFriar

Interesting stuff, ping!


36 posted on 02/18/2015 6:04:08 PM PST by NYer (Without justice - what else is the State but a great band of robbers? - St. Augustine)
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