21 March 2012
Rain, Rain and more Rain. Like Fiji
While stuck in the sugar cane fields during the endless rain and wind being produced by a cyclonic low over Cairns, I came across this interesting read.
There is something about a ship lost at sea which sends shivers down our spines and evokes a sense of mystery and chilling fatefulness. Maybe because the sea can become an endless void which is instinctively unnerving. However, even though thousands of ships have gone missing at sea some have become legendary and their tales timeless.
The U.S.S Cyclops was built in 1910 and was used in World War I to transport coal for the Navy. In 1918 on its way to the U.S from Brazil it completely disappeared without a trace not even a single S.O.S call. The shocking thing about this disaster is over 300 men lost their lives and to this day nobody has found any wreck or evidence of the ship. It remains the single largest loss of life experienced by the United States Navy of a vessel not in combat. According to records it was apparently overloaded with manganese ore, which could have contributed to its unfortunate demise.
The Ourang Medan is allegedly a Dutch merchant ship that sank in Indonesian waters in 1947. According to sources two ships answered an S.O.S call. The City of Baltimore and the Silver Star which were both American vessels. The distress messages exclaimed the rest of the crew were apparently dead. When the Silver Star arrived they found the entire crew dead on board with terrified expressions. As the crew of the Silver Star investigated The Ourang Medan allegedly set on fire and sank. To this day nobody knows exactly what happened on board and caused the fire. However, some believe the ship was carrying nitroglycerin and some kind of nerve chemicals which caused the deaths of the crew and eventual fire.
The Baychimo is a story of a ship that just wouldn't sink. It was abandoned near Alaska in 1931 because it was trapped in ice. After some time the ship broke free naturally and was seen adrift. The amazing thing is it remained adrift for almost 40 years without sinking. Various crew throughout the years tried to salvage the ship without success. Over the years sightings were recorded as recently as 1969.
The Mary Celeste is possibly one of the most famous ships in history. The ship was bound for Italy in 1872 with grain alcohol as its cargo. It was found in December 1872 by the crew of a British ship called the Dei Gratia. They allegedly found The Mary Celeste completely abandoned, but the ship was fully supplied, equipped and sea worthy. After investigation it was found that a life raft was missing but the mystery of the lost crew remained. To this day The Mary Celeste remains one of the great legends of the sea. Captain David Williams is cited as having the most practical solution to its mystery. After 30 years of research he basically concluded the ship set on fire in some way, the crew entered a life raft but forgot to tether it to the ship as a result they were left stranded.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6715815