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Ghost Ship Legends - The Lady Lovibond and Queen Mary

By Yona Williams    10/31/09

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The mysterious seas create the perfect setting for plenty of tales centered on ghost ships and regional folklore. For example, the Caleuche was linked to local folklore and Chilota mythology – believed to haunt the waters located around Chiloe Island in Chile during the nighttime. Appearing as a striking sailing ship with sound of partying onboard, it is known to quickly disappear. Two other ghost ship legends are discussed in this article:

The Lady Lovibond

This 1748 ship disaster is thought to have been wrecked in a deliberate move on Goodwin Sands on February 13. Every 50 years, the Lady Lovibond is known to reappear off of the Kent coast. Often referred to as one of the most popular of ghost ships, the tale behind it is quite interesting. The ship set out to sea because the captain, Simon Peel, had just been married and thought it nice to celebrate with a cruise. It was an ongoing superstition of sailors to keep women off of ships, but Peel brought his bride on the ship against tradition.

Legend has it that one of the crew (either the helmsman or the first mate) really took a liking to the captain's new bride. While Peel, his wife, and their guests celebrating their nuptials, the crewman grew increasingly jealous. He actually murdered Peel and steered the ship into Goodwin Sands – situated off the coast of Kent – near the town of Deal – one of the most productive grounds for ghost ships in England. This act of selfishness killed everyone who was onboard.

The first time the phantom Lady Lovibond was sighted, it was 1798. At least two ships saw the vessel with one of the captains exclaiming the sighting was so realistic, he feared a collision. When the ship appeared in 1848, local seaman truly thought they had witnessed a wreck and responded by sending out lifeboats in an attempt to rescue any survivors. In 1948, Captain Bull Prestwick encountered the ship and described the scene as something highly believable except for the fact that it gave off a strange green glow. No sighting was reported in 1998 of the Lady Lovibond.

The Lady Lovibond isn’t the only ship haunting the region – two other phantom vessels call the waters their home as well. They include a liner named the Montrose and the Shrewsbury (a man-of-war).

The Queen Mary

When it comes to infamous cruise ships, the Queen Mary tops the list. Today, the ship serves as a hotel and tourist attraction, but for paranormal enthusiasts – it holds a special place in their hearts because of the ghosts said to haunt the former ocean traveler. One of the resident ghosts is believed to be the spirit of a 17-year old crewman that died when he was crushed by a watertight door in 1966 during a routine drill. The door is the site of unexplainable knocking. There have also been reports of a dark figure leaving the area where the crewman died. Other ghosts associated with the Queen Mary include a strange woman in white and an apparition with a long beard that dresses in blue-gray overalls.

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