By Maryam Sarhan
Just as Bilbo Baggins vanished into thin air in The Lord of the Rings, History is replete with examples of men who disappeared leaving no trace behind. Many of such disappearances remain unsolved while others’ clues were uncovered. Here are some examples of the most mysterious disappearances in all times.
10- Louis Le Prince
Due to his mysterious disappearance on a train bound for Paris in 1890, Louis Le Prince was unable to patent his new single-lens camera that was the first one to shoot the first motion pictures on paper film. Theories explaining his disappearance include assassination, suicide and drowning to death.
9- Ambrose Bierce
“As to me, I leave here tomorrow for an unknown destination,” this was Bitter Bierce’s last communication with the world before he vanished without a trace in 1913. Despite the abundant theories for his unexplained disappearance (including being killed, died by suicide), his disappearance remains shrouded in mystery.
8- The Vanished Battalion
In 1915, 266 British soldiers vanished without a trace. Three members of a New Zealand field company reported seeing a British battalion marching up a Turkish hillside that was shrouded in mist and they were never seen again. In the aftermath of the First World War, Britain demanded that Turkey returned all members of the battalion but Turkey insisted that it had not captured them. Some theories attribute this mysterious disappearance to UFO abduction.
7– Anastasia Romanova
What exactly happened to the Grand Duchess of Russia remains in doubt. After the rumors of a plan to save the Tsar family began to circulate in 1917, the Bolshevik revolutionaries decided to put an end to their lives and not to uncover their burial site. 70 years after this tragic incident, excavations at a suspected burial place started and most of the bodies of the Tsar’s family were identified except for Anastasia.
6– Agatha Christie
It appears that Amy was not the first “Gone Girl” in history. Agatha Christie mysteriously disappeared in 1926 after a fight with her husband Colonel Archie Christie. Her disappearance became an international obsession with hundreds of volunteers helping in the hunt. 11 days after her disappearance, she was found in a hotel room.
5– The Vanished Inuit Village near Lake Angikuni
To his astonishment in 1930, the Canadian fur trapper Joe Labelle found the Inuit village he used to visit empty. Everything needed for life – food, rifles, clothing- was ready but without an Inuit to use them. Being a real disappearance or a narration made up from whole cloth has not been determined.
4– Amelia Earhart
Driven by a desire to fly over the world, the first female aviator Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan flied over the Pacific Ocean in 1937. They vanished into thin air with no radio messages being confirmed as having come from them. Theories explaining their disappearance include crashing at sea or being captured by the Japanese military till they eventually die.
3- The MV Joyita
In 1955, the crew of the merchant vessel MV Joyita – that was heading from Western Samoa to Fakaofo – mysteriously disappeared. When the vessel was found four weeks later, it was missing its crew, total cargo and all of its lifeboats. David Wright claimed that the boat sank due to a corroded pipe; however, this is a mere assumption.
2- The Baffling Disappearance of Hippies at Stonehenge
It was about 2 a.m. in August 1971 when a severe thunder storm brought huge bolts of lightning to a camp by a group of hippies. Witnesses heard the screams of campers. When the lightning was over, they ran to help but found no one, only the campfire and the tent pegs. It was like if the thunder storm absorbed the campers.
1- Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
On its way from Malaysia to Beijing, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 mysteriously disappeared in March 8, 2014. Despite an international thorough search, no trace has been found. The aircraft’s disappearance remains unsolved.