Laid down in 1894 as the unprotected cruiser SMS Geier by the Imperial Dockyard, Whilhelmshaven, Germany
Launched 18 October 1894
Acquired by the Navy 6 April 1917; Renamed Schurz 9 June 1917
Commissioned USS Schurz 15 September 1917
Sunk 21 June 1918 after being struck by the SS Florida off Cape Lookout Lightship, 130 miles east of Wilmington, NC
Struck from the Navy list 26 August 1918
Specifications: Displacement 1,630 t.; Length 254’; Beam 32’ 1"; Draft 14’ 2"; Speed 16 kts.
Armament: four 5"
Propulsion: triple expansion steam engine, one shaft.
Date Sunk: 6/21/18
Cause: Collision with SS Florida
Size (ft.): 255 x 32 x 14
Tonnage: 1,603 tons
Propulsion: Coal-fired steam
Location N34° 11.218’/W76° 36.127’
Diving Depths: 95-110 ft.
Visibility: Generally very good; range 50 to 100+ ft. Visibility is often reduced to less than 10 feet because of the schools of baitfish
Current: Slight to moderate
Summer Temperature: high 70s to lo 80s
Points of Interest: Four boilers, engine, port anchor, rudder/steering quadrant, bow and stern deck guns, various sizes of ammunition & bullets;
Fish/Animal Life: Vast schools of baitfish, frequent sandtiger sharks, amberjacks, occasional sea turtles, numerous small tropicals and moray eels;
Also known as the "WWI" or World War One or the Geier , the wreck of the Schurz is contiguous and lies generally on its keel. (It actually lists to its port side This is more noticeable near the stern than anywhere else on the wreck.) The high spots on the wreck are the boilers. From the boilers, forward to the bow, the wreck is quite flat and without much relief. In spite of its small, compact size, there are days where the vast schools of baitfish make it quite easy to get turned around on this wreck. Sometimes you can’t see two feet! This wreck has suffered a lot over the past couple of years from overdiving and overdigging from crewboats and artifact divers. Yet, if you can get on it with out other divers on it, the Schurz, with its abundant fish life and usually clear water, is still a very pretty wreck.