The Bermuda Triangle, or Devi’s Triangle, covers around 500,000 square miles of the ocean located off the southeastern tip of Florida. One of the earliest suggestions of unusual disappearances taking place in this area appeared on September 17, 1950, in an article published in The Miami Herald by Edward Van Winkle Jones. Its believed that Christopher Columbus sailed through this area on his first voyage to the Americas, and reported that he saw a great flame of fire, likely a meteor, crash into the sea one night and that a strange light appeared in the distance several weeks later. He also said that there were erratic compass readings, and this could have been due to the fact that at that time, a small part of the Bermuda Triangle was one of the few areas on Earth where magnetic north and true north lined up.
It is also believed that Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest” was based on a real-life Bermuda shipwreck, which could have added to the mystery of the area. Most reports concerning unexplained disappearance never really grabbed the attention of the public until the 20th century. One such tragedy occurred in March 1918 when a 542-foot long Navy cargo ship, the USS Cyclops, carrying 300 men and 10,000 tons of manganese ore onboard sank somewhere between Barbados and the Chesapeake Bay. The Cyclops never sent out an SOS despite the fact that they were equipped to do so, and an extensive search never found the ship. Then, in 1941, two of the Cyclops’ sister ships vanished in a similar manner without a trace along the same route.
A pattern seemed to form where vessels traversing the Bermuda Triangle would either disappear or be found abandoned. In December 1945, five Navy bombers carrying 14 men took off from a Fort Lauderdale airfield to conduct practice bombing runs over some nearby shoals. But his compass seemed to malfunction, and Flight 19 got lost. All five planes flew aimlessly until they started to run out of fuel, and the men were forced to ditch them at sea. That same day, the 13-man crew on a rescue plane disappeared. After weeks of searching failed to turn up any evidence, the Navy released the official report, declaring that it was “as if they had flown to Mars.”
Another disappearance on December 28, 1948, involved a Douglas DC-3 aircraft. The flight was going from San Juan to Miami. It disappeared, and no trace of the aircraft…