Friday, March 16, 2007

The Bermuda Triangle

"The land was first seen by a sailor called Rodrigo de Triana, although the Admiral at ten o'clock that evening standing on the quarter-deck saw a light, but so small a body that he could not affirm it to be land; calling to Pero Gutierrez, groom of the King's wardrobe, he told him he saw a light, and bid him look that way, which he did and saw it; he did the same to Rodrigo Sanchez of Segovia, whom the King and Queen had sent with the squadron as comptroller, but he was unable to see it from his situation. The Admiral again perceived it once or twice, appearing like the light of a wax candle moving up and down, which some thought an indication of land. But the Admiral held it for certain that land was near..."
-
Christopher Columbus, during passage throu
gh the Bermuda Triangle area, October 11, 1492

Everyone and their mother know about the Bermuda Triangle - ships disappear, no one knows why, etc... But do you know the details of the events or just how many there have been? Well you do now...

Flight 19 - A training flight of U.S. Air Force TBM Avenger Bombers, it disappeared over the Atlantic on a clear day in December of 1945. The aircraft's pilot, Charles Carroll Taylor, has become the focal point of this debate, with proponents of the paranormal citing his experience and leadership qualifications and skeptics pointing out that Taylor had a penchant for losing his way and ditching aircrafts, there are three documented cases of this during World War II.

Mary Celeste - An abandoned ghost ship that set sail from Staten Island and was found drifting along the coast of Portugal in September of 1864 with no lifeboats or crew aboard. Many believe the passengers of the Mary Celeste floated into the Bermuda Triangle and disappeared. Of course, no evidence of this exists but not a single passenger from the ship was ever recovered.


Carroll A. Deering
- 50 years later, the Carroll A. Deering was found abandoned off the coast of North Carolina after passing through the Triangle. Many chalk this crew's disappearance up to piracy, citing the prevalence of the rum-running trade that was at its height during Prohibition.


Ellen Austin - While in the Triangle area, the Ellen Austin came across an empty vessel and sent a crew aboard, intending to sail with it to New York. During a squall that came hours later, the ships were separated. When the Ellen Austin again encountered the abandoned derelict, the crew members they had sent aboard were missing. No casualty list for the Ellen Austin exists and scholars seem unsure as to what to make of this story.

U.S.S Cyclops - The coolest one. In March of 1918, this naval ship disappeared without a trace and resulted in the largest, non-combat related loss of life in the history of the U.S. Navy. No distress signal was put out and no trace of the vessel has ever been found. 306 crew member perished. There's no prevalent theory in regards to the fate of the Cyclops.

Joshua Slocum - The first man to sail solo around the world, Joshua Slocum and his fishing boat, the Spray disappeared in the waters of the Bermuda Triangle in November of 1909. No one knows what happened to him but many have posited that he was struck by a steamship or a whale.

Douglas D.C-3
- A flight from Puerto Rico to Miami, Florida, this plane and its 32 passengers vanished into thin air around the Triangle. No factually supported theories as to what happened exist.

Star Tiger & Star Ariel - Two more commuter flights that disappeared inside the Triangle without a distress call or any wreckage recovered.

Teignmouth Electron - This was the name of the boat that was sailed by Donald Crowhurst in the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race, which was a yacht race around the globe. The Teignmouth Electron was found abandoned outside of the Triangle and Crowhurst's body was never recovered. Most serious scholarship on the event holds that Crowhurst was well on his way towards insanity and that the boat race and the pressure of his failing business finally pushed him over the edge, prompting him to take his own life.

SS Marine Sulphur Queen
- Another U.S. Military vessel that "sailed into the unknown" and was never recovered. This one, however, had a history of being "badly-maintained" and was deemed unseaworthy by the Navy before it shipped out of port.

Well, that's the bulk of it.

Most experts hold that we are considering an area that is frequently leveled by tropical storms and that the disappearances in and around the Bermuda Triangle are not particularly notable. The consensus seems to be that the Triangle myth was an old sailor folk legend, stemming from navigation unfamiliarity after the discovery of the New World, which was later embellished by writers to sell books.

Still, where's the U.S.S. Cyclops? Why can't we find a giant Naval collier?

Because aliens took it. That's why.

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