Great Lakes Shipwreck Explorer
David Trotter’s name is synonymous with Shipwreck
Explorer, particularly in the area of the Great Lakes in
the Midwestern United States and Canada. Born in Ottawa,
Iowa on December 17, 1940, David began his love affair
with diving in 1963 at the age of 23. Trotter recalls
with amusement that his YMCA course required no open
water checkouts. In fact, after his
fourth session (of six), the assistant dive instructor
declared that David looked good and would he like to travel
to Morrison Springs for a weekend of diving? Trotter
borrowed some equipment and off they went. He never
completed that course, due to a job change, and it was years
before he actually received an “official C card,” but that
certainly did not curtails his diving activities!
Trotter’s focus has long revolved around his passion for
shipwreck exploration in the Great Lakes. He acknowledges
the early Great Lakes Shipwreck hunters and explorers,
David decompressing after a dive to
video a new shipwreck discovery
such as John Steel, Paul Ehorn, Garry Kosak, as well as Chuck and
Jerri Feltner, as sources of inspiration for his own career.
David’s career spans some four decades and he has made
significant contributions in diving, exploring, and
documenting new discoveries surrounding the Great Lakes
shipwrecks. His work has not only provided invaluable
historical documentation for these wrecks, but has paved
the way for more exploration opportunities for other
sport and technical divers to enjoy.
Some of Trotter’s shipwreck discoveries have been
featured on the Discovery Channel, PBS, NBC, as well as
in journals like the New York Times, Detroit News,
Detroit Free Press, Canadian “Diver” Magazine Lakeland
Boating, “Wreck Diver”, and “Immersed” Dive Magazines.
His articles have been published in various historical
journals, as well as national scuba diving publications.
This intrepid explorer has searched and discovered
shipwrecks in all of the Great Lakes, except for Lake
Ontario. Trotter spent years of dedicated effort to
discover the largest schooner built in Canada, the
250’Minnedosa. As a result of this unique odyssey, over
2,000 square miles of Lake Huron were surveyed, with
80-90 new sites being discovered along the way. Some of
the exciting finds were airplanes, the steamer Daniel J
Morrell, and the steamer Goliath. The Goliath was
designed by John Ericsson in 1846, fifteen years before
he designed the ironclad Monitor of Civil War fame.
David founded his organization, Undersea Research
Associates, to present the Great Lakes community with an
electronically sophisticated means of underwater search
and survey for archeological and commercial purposes.
David & Mickey Trotter celebrating David's
2010 Our World-Underwater award for contributions to diving.
Utilizing state-of-the-art side scan sonar, the
organization offers visual underwater time capsules of
marine history with high resolution bottom profiling at
depths to 1,000 feet, underwater site survey, and
underwater photographic documentation.
Trotter views The Great Lakes as a treasure to be
enjoyed by all who love our “inland seas” and appreciate
our rich maritime history. He feels that a diver
exploring a shipwreck, whether in 20’ or 300’ of
water has that
unique experience of traveling back into time. To honor
David’s extensive contributions to diving and to the
Great Lakes maritime history, Our World-Underwater
(Chicago) presented him with the very special 2010 OW-U
Trotter’s adventures in diving and exploring the
shipwrecks of the Great Lakes has been chronicled
extensively in the book Shipwreck Hunter by Gerry
David has been happily married to his wife, Michele, for
47 years, and has two sons, Jay and Ross, as well as
three grandchildren. He continues to lecture and promote
Great Lakes exploration through his organization
Undersea Research Associates.
Thousands of people have enjoyed David's live
presentations of his colorful tales of discovery and
shipwreck exploration. His programs are designed for
people of all ages and he tailors each program to the
audience....children to grandparents. His programs are
suitable for small as well as large groups and can be
presented in video, DVD, or multimedia format and are
delivered with his charismatic live narration. To
schedule one of David's presentations, you can contact
7805 Royal Court N.
Canton, Mi 48187