Sunday, December 4, 2011

How About A Sunday Mystery...?

I figured that today would be a good time to share a mystery right out of the history books!

Many of you may have heard of this ship before, but many others may not have had the chance to study it. To this day, the mystery has not been solved and that's what makes it such an enduring maritime tale!

Dec 4, 1872:
The mystery of the Mary Celeste

The Dei Gratia, a small British brig under Captain David Morehouse, spots the Mary Celeste, an American vessel, sailing erratically but at full sail near the Azores Islands in the Atlantic Ocean. The ship was seaworthy, its stores and supplies were untouched, but not a soul was onboard.

On November 7, the brigantine Mary Celeste sailed from New York harbor for Genoa, Italy, carrying Captain Benjamin S. Briggs, his wife and two-year-old daughter, a crew of eight, and a cargo of some 1,700 barrels of crude alcohol. After the Dei Gratia sighted the vessel on December 4, Captain Morehouse and his men boarded the ship to find it abandoned, with its sails slightly damaged, several feet of water in the hold, and the lifeboat and navigational instruments missing. However, the ship was in good order, the cargo intact, and reserves of food and water remained on board.

The last entry in the captain's log shows that the Mary Celeste had been nine days and 500 miles away from where the ship was found by the Dei Gratia. Apparently, the Mary Celeste had been drifting toward Genoa on her intended course for 11 days with no one at the wheel to guide her. Captain Briggs, his family, and the crew of the vessel were never found, and the reason for the abandonment of the Mary Celeste has never been determined.

I always did love a good mystery, but what makes this one even better is the fact that that it is real and not some made up piece of fiction! I, for one, would love to know the whole story, but I suppose we will never find out the true facts.

Like a good mystery book with the last couple of pages torn out, isn't it?

The cold front hasn't come in yet, so let's have our coffee on the patio! OK?


Anonymous said...

That is a good mystery and I've read many different guessesto why they abandoned the ship but none makes much sense.

Have a great day!

HermitJim said...

Hey Christer...
Sure does make me curious!

The history books are really full of mysteries that haven't been solved yet! Makes for some interesting reading, that's for sure!

Thanks, my friend, for coming by today!

Gorges Smythe said...

Did they count the remaining barrels of alcohol?

Ben in Texas said...

Thanks for bringing that back to mind. Read about it first while in HS I guess, then I read about the Sargasso Sea and the ships they found "trapped" there. Guess that was what started my interest in lost/ abandoned ships at sea.
Have flown over the Bermuda Triangle but never been there from sea.

trav4adventures said...

Oh, yes, I remember this story. Glad you brought her back for us to ponder!

JoJo said...

Now you have me interested in this story. I am going to have to look into it further as Christer said he read other guesses about this.

Coffee on your patio sounds good.
You haven't gotten the storm yet because it decided to stay here and freeze us into the house for another day.

HermitJim said...

Hey Gorges...
Now that information I do not have!

Pretty unusual that they never found the life boat or the passengers and crew! Lots of years with no answers!

Thanks, my friend, for coming by today!

Hey Ben...
Like I was saying, the history books are just chock full of this type of story!

The stuff of legends, I reckon!

Glad you enjoyed it,buddy! Thanks for coming over this morning!

Hey Cheryl Ann...
I appreciate you dropping by today! Always nice to have some new visitors!

I really enjoy these old stories that still hold our interest after all these years!

Thanks so much for coming by today!

Hey JoJo...
Probably a lot of stories like this around where you live, but more about mines and such instead of boats or ships!

Thanks, sweetie, for coming by today!

TROUBLEnTX said...

There's a lot of that connected with the Bermuda Triangle. Planes and ships. Read a lot about it way back, glad i never had to travel over it,,,lol.

Dizzy-Dick said...

I bet it something ordinary and simple that made them abandon the ship. Since there was water in the hold, maybe they thought it was going down in a storm and took too fast of an escape action. But, like you said, we will never know.

Sixbears said...

My guess is that they had reason to believe the ship was in worse condition that it really was and made a sudden decision to abandon ship.