A Civil War-era schooner that sank in a blinding snowstorm in 1862 has been located in the depths of Lake Ontario.

Two shipwreck explorers chanced upon the 36-metre-long C. Reeve while conducting underwater surveys this summer a few kilometres off the lake's southern shore west of Rochester, New York.

The twin-masted ship lies mostly intact, its main mast still erect, at a depth of nearly 122 metres.

Built in Buffalo in 1853, the C. Reeve was carrying 13,500 bushels of corn from Chicago to Oswego on Nov. 22, 1862.

It collided that evening with the Exchange, a Lake Erie-bound schooner loaded with salt, and its small crew was rescued before it quickly went under.