Eilean Mor Lighthouse Mystery


Lighthouses have been accompanying seafarers and fishermen since the ancient times. They shine in the dark to help people find a safe way alongside the dangerous coastline. One of them was even so significant, that it became one of the wonders of the world. Exactly, the Lighthouse on Faros built in 285 BC. and destroyed during earthquake in 1375. The light of the lighthouse, which dominated the ancient city, could be seen on 30 miles away, and the legend says that it was as strong as it could burn the  sails of enemy ships. As mentioned John Romer this lighthouse „symbolized and celebrated one of the human experiments, the birth of a modern city founded by Alexander the Great. (...) Alexander thought during the setting up the city for trading, and therefore needed a large square market, that he placed directly on the beach between the Nile and the sea, that ran along the coast. Then, he created different parts of the city, and the city was surrounded by massive walls. 20 years later, when Alexander was dead, the architects changed his plans. They joined the market with a small island along the coast, made a big junction in the city and placed Alexander's tomb in the middle. He died and was buried in his town. The city had two exceptional landmarks, a lighthouse on the island and Alexander's tomb."

Though, this lighthouse can no longer be seen, hundreads of other lighthouses can be found around the world, and some of them are hiding many secrets. One of them is a 22-meter tall lighthouse on a group of islands known as the Flannan Isles, a group of rocky uninhabited islands in Scotland. One of the largest of these islands is known as Eilean Mor. Here was built a lighthouse, which light first lit on December 7, 1899 and could be seen up to 24 nautical miles. Three men were assigned to the lighthouse - Donald MacArthur, Thomas Marshall and James Ducat to run the lighthouse, but they disappeared without a trace.

The last man who saw them, was a lighthouse superintendent, Robert Muirhead, who routinely came up with the men to make sure everything works the way it does. The lighthouse was controlled by binoculars from the mainland, but it was often difficult because of fog.

On December 15, 1900, captain  of SS Archer noted, that the lighthouse did not shine. At the nearest port, he reported this problem, but due to bad weather the SS Hesperus arrived on the island until December 26th. Joseph Moore, who had to change one of the men on the lighthouse, crossed the island with two more sailors. Moore found, that the gate and the door to the men's quarters are closed. According to testimonies, men had to find clean and filled lamps ready for the night. They find overturned chairs and table, a cold fireplace, a half of food on the kitchen table. As if somebody still wanted to return to it later. The cabinets were missing with the Ducat´s and Marshall´s boots, one, McArthur´s, was still there. They also lacked their tools. It seemed as if the men had left the lighthouse in a great hurry.

After exploring the island of Moore, he found more damages caused  by the storm to the peninsula of the island. The harbor was twisted, the iron stairway twisted and disfigured. But there were no traces of men.

What happened to the island? The guideline can be the last records:

December 12 - Whirl from the north to the northeast. Sea whips from fury. I have never seen such a storm. The waves are very high, breaking on the lighthouse. James Ducat is irritated.

12 December (later) - the storm is still raining, the wind is stable. We can not go out. The passing ships use a foggy horn, the Ducat is silent. McArthur's crying.

December 13 - The storm continued overnight. The wind has moved from the west to the north. Ducat is silent. McArthur prays.

13 December (later): gray daylight. I, Ducat and McArthur pray.
December 14 - No entry

December 15: The storm is over, the sea is peaceful. God is above all.

What is interesting is, that this terrible storm did not get to the island of Lewis, less than 30 kilometers away. It is also a mystery of what get men so terribly afraid of praying for God? They were the experienced men, who had met with the storms many times. Ducat had 20 years of experience in working on the lighthouse, McArthur and Marshall were seafarers. It is also interesting that everything indicated, that the men had suddenly left or gone, but still managed to lock the door. The official version, with which superintendent closed the case, is that the men had to go out repair damage on the lighthouse and were drown down by the wave. However, it is problematic to imagine how three experienced experts went repair damages without any security. One of the other theories says that one of the men could eat something contaminated and get crazy. He killed two more and then jumped into the sea.

Another theory, however, is based on the narrative of local residents, who say that the Vikings once lived on the island. Their haunted ship is often seen on the sea. Even the crew of Fairwin in the night when the lights did not light, saw a "scary boat," with a three-man man with bone-colored faces dressed in heavy cloaks. They called on the men, used a foggy horn, but received no answer. Some say, they were the souls of the Vikings, who were blushing around the world with whom the men in the lighthouse came into conflict. Others say that around the island, it is still possible to hear the voices and the cry of long-dead sailors, who have died near the island and are still asking for help and the salvation of their souls. Is it possible that the lighthouse guardians would go to help and died during the trying? The pale faces, which Fairwin´s seafarers could see could belong to the lighthouse men, who had been frightened and tried to get away, but what could have frightened them? And why would not they heard a foggy horn? We will probably never know what exactly happened to these three men. Maybe they tried to send signals for help, but they could not be seen because of the fog ...


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