In a country with hundreds of years of history like the USA, you never know what secrets and mysteries are hiding around each and every corner, just waiting to be uncovered. We could be walking or driving down the street and be only steps away from a mystery waiting to be discovered. We could miss it entirely, or find something amazing that changes our lives.
That is exactly what happened to some kayakers on a routine kayaking ride. They discovered a century-old ghost ship with a haunting history that will send chills down your spine. Continue reading to learn more about the find and the freaky story behind it!
#12 First Glimpse
A few kayakers were taking a little ride through the Ohio River and like anyone on an adventure, they had their eyes open for something cool. As soon as they passed through some trees on the river, it looked as if they had found what they were looking for — a giant abandoned ship.
#11 Getting Closer
A video of the discovery was uploaded to Youtube in July of 2012 by a user named TheGh0st81. The video showed the first sight of the ship, the group’s approach, and everything that followed once they laid eyes this freaky derelict ship just 25 minutes outside of Cincinnati, Ohio.
#10 Quite the Journey
A few of the kayakers had heard of this ship and all the stories behind it. Of course, with their adventurous minds racing, they knew the wanted to get closer. But to do this, they had to take quite the journey that included a hike and a trip further down the river. But they were up for it.
#9 Well Worth The Trip
Despite the long and sometimes tough trek to get to the ship, it was immediately worth it as they began to get closer and closer to this historical wonder. For the group, it was like taking a step into a time machine, back to when this ship would have been active. It was abandoned and quiet, looking like it belonged in a horror film.
#8 The Origins of the Ship
Like we said before, the ship has had quite a storied history, which we’ll get into now. The ship was originally called “Celt” and was built in 1902 by Pusey and Jones in Delaware. It was soon commissioned as a luxury yacht for a rich railroad executive named J. Rogers Maxwell.
#7 Role Change
Not long after, the role of the Celt would change dramatically. When the USA joined World War I in 1917, the boat was optioned to be drafted into the conflict. The navy was looking for boats that could move quicker than the German boats, and the Celt was definitely capable of such speeds.
#6 Famous Passengers
The boat was finally officially secured by the Navy and given the name USS Sachem. After machine guns were added, it would now begin its service as a coastal patrol boat. During this time, the Celt saw some pretty famous individuals on board including Thomas Edison, the creator of the phonograph and the light bulb.
#5 Changing Owners Once Again
After the war, the boat was returned to its original owner once again. It was then sold to a banker in Philadelphia, and then eventually bought by Captain Jacob Martin of Brooklyn. Martin got it for a steal as the roaring 20s were now over and the Great Depression was ravaging the economy.
#4 New Role to Go Along With New Owner
When Martin got the boat, he turned it into a fishing boat in which people could pay to come aboard and fish. While some came on the boat to fish, others came to party and have fun. In fact, this idea by Martin turned him into one of the pioneers of the modern concept of “party-boat fishing.”
#3 Finally Retired
After being a party boat for a while, the Celt was once again called to duty for World War II. After that was over, the boat served another few decades of service as a tour boat. But finally, in the 1980s, the boat was retired. But even still, the long and storied history of the boat was not done yet.
#2 It Was in a Madonna Video
In 1986, the ship was bought for a mere $7500. While the new owner was prepping the boat for a journey, he was approached by one of Madonna’s reps, who said the pop star wanted to use the boat in her music video for the song “Papa Don’t Preach.” A deal was struck, and the boat actually appears in the video!
#1 Final Resting Place
After its brief stint in the celebrity spotlight, the long and storied history of this boat was ready to come to an end. After a final cross-country journey from New York, the boat has been left in the exact same spot it is now, and has been there for 30 years.
There you have it. Imagine the shock in the eyes and hearts of these kayakers when they discovered they had just stumbled upon a ship that was around 100 years old. If that wasn’t enough, this ship also has a history with many twists and turns. It is extremely rare for a boat to have a resume like this one. It served it two wars, was a luxury yacht, was a fishing boat, served as a tourist attraction and then capped off its career in a Madonna video. Truly one of the best stories of a vessel in the history of the world.