Summer of 1943. In the midst of World War II, an American battleship tested a technology designed by Einstein himself and managed to become invisible and teleport. That is, at least, what some conspiracy theorists say. This is the true story of the USS Elridge, the ship that “traveled in time”.
The legend of the Rainbow Project
What is popularly known as the Philadelphia Experiment, alludes to an alleged dark program of the US Navy called Project Rainbow. Urban legend says the military was testing a generator of electromagnetic fields with which they sought to find practical applications to the unified field theory proposed by Albert Einstein. In one sentence, they tried to achieve invisibility.
Private technicians who did not know what they were installing provided two powerful generators, dozens of meters of electrical cable around the hull and other complex electronic devices to the USS Elridge, a 93-meter-long battleship. On July 22, 1943, the first supposed experiment took place. The generators activated an electromagnetic field that made the battleship disappear from sight for a few minutes surrounded by a greenish fog. Some sailors complained of strong nausea caused by the test.
The equipment was readjusted and the second test took place on October 28. This time, the whole ship completely disappeared and appeared at the navy base in Norfolk, 600 kilometers away and 15 minutes in the past. There he was sighted during that time. After that he disappeared again in the middle of a blue lightning to return to Philadelphia.
Official statements of the navy
According to urban legend, the consequences of this second experiment were so devastating for the crew that the Navy decided to cancel the project. Most of the sailors developed schizophrenia and some completely lost their judgment. Many were seriously injured as they materialized, and others, less fortunate, fused horribly with the ship’s hull. Some vanished days after the experiment and never reappeared.
This is, roughly speaking, the truculent history perpetuated by conspiracy theorists, ufologists, and some science-fiction films. The navy has always denied the existence of the Philadelphia experiment. In a statement released in November 2000, the Navy’s Office of Naval Research (ONR) completely denied the existence of any invisibility or teleportation program, as well as Einstein’s involvement. In a summary of the note published by Naval History & Heritage, it is said:
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has already explained that the use of forcefields to make a ship and its crew invisible does not conform to the known laws of physics. The ONR also asserts that Dr. Albert Einstein’s unified field theory has never been completed.
Between 1943 and 1944, Einstein worked as a part-time consultant for the navy in theoretical investigation of explosives and explosions. There is no evidence that Einstein worked on anything related to invisibility or teleportation.
Indeed, unified field theory was a concept coined by Einstein when he attempted to explain the gravitational field and the electromagnetic field by a single unified theory. He never succeeded, but many do not care that the laws of physics overturn a good story.
The letters of Carlos Allende
How did the Philadelphia Experiment come to light? The answer is through a series of letters sent by Carl Meredith Allen under the pseudonym of Carlos Miguel Allende. Supposedly, Allen was a merchant seaman who saw the USS Elridge disappear from his own ship, SS Andrew Furuseth.
With a somewhat peculiar prose and abundant spelling mistakes, Allen described the supposed experiment of teleportation in a correspondence maintained with the writer and ufologist Morris Jessup. Although the sailor never provided any reliable proof of what he was saying, Jessup was fascinated by the tale and included it in a book titled The Case for the UFO. Jessup failed to repeat the moderate success of this book and committed suicide four years later. The circumstances surrounding his death further fueled the theory that the experiment existed and that the government has since tried to cover it up. The urban legend of the Philadelphia experiment had been officially born.
The Truth About The Philadelphia Experiment
The Philadelphia Experiment is a complicated hodgepodge of Allen’s feverish imagination, Jessup’s credulity, real facts, and gossip about sailors. The first thing that does not agree are the dates. Official records say that the USS Elridge was launched on July 25, 1943, two days after the alleged first experiment. He officially entered service at the Shipyard of New York on August 27, 1943.
What is certain is that, in the 1940s, the US Navy experimented with invisibility. Of course, it was not invisibility to the naked eye. The USS Elridge and its twin, the USS Engstrom were equipped with a new system that surrounded the whole hull with electric cables. The technique was called Degaussing, and its aim was to reduce the magnetic field of the ship to avoid that it was an easy target of the mines and magnetic torpedoes used in the Nazi submarines. The technique became very popular in the 40’s and came to be applied to military and civilian vessels alike.
As Edward Dudgeon, one of the sailors aboard the USS Elridge, explains, the degaussing system was installed by outside contractors. Not knowing exactly what they were installing together with the jokes of sailors who spoke of a system to “make the boat invisible” was enough to trigger the gossip. To this was added the fact that the ship did carry secret experimental equipment. It was, in particular, a new type of sonar and a system to sow loads of depth called Hedgehog.
The “lightning” spoken of in the urban legend about the Philadelphia experiment may be as simple as the discharge of ionized plasma known long ago as San Telmo fire.
As for the mysterious disappearance of the USS Elridge, Dudgeon explains that the origin of that part of the urban legend is due to an incident at the base of Norfolk. The Elridge landed at the base to get supplies, but soon he released moorings and returned to Philadelphia, where he arrived in less than six hours. According to the navigation charts of the area, this crossing was impossible because it was necessary to take a large detour to avoid German submarines and minefields. In fact, the ship used the channel Chesapeake & Delaware, that allows skipping the detour to the peninsula.
Dudgeon explains how until his departure and the one of a companion by the back door during a tavern fight encouraged the rumors of sailors of the USS Elridge that disappeared. Neither Edward Dudgeon nor his companion bar was old enough to drink, and when the fight broke out, the taverna took them out the back door to avoid problems with the authorities. To many, Dudgeon’s entire account is the cover of a mad experiment.
On January 15, 1951, the USS Elridge was transferred to Greece, where he served under the name of Leon. The ship left the service in 1999 and ended its days peacefully in a scrapping. It served to attenuate the legend of the Philadelphia Experiment that a group of veterans of the USS Elridge offered an interview in 1999 in which commented the history fun. The most fanciful prefer to believe that the US navy managed in a delusional pseudo-scientific combo invisibility, teleportation and time travel, but decided not to move forward because some sailors died.
Scientists attempting to open portal to a parallel universe
Does a mysterious mirror world lurk in the shadows of perceived reality? It could explain a lot
Could 2019 be the year humans open the first portal to a shadowy dimension which mirrors our own world?
Scientists in Oak Ridge National Laboratory in eastern Tennessee hope so, and have completed building equipment they are to test this summer which may allow us the first glimpse of a parallel universe which could be identical in many ways to our own, with mirror particles, mirror planets and possibly even mirror life.
That is according to Leah Broussard, the physicist behind the project, who described the attempt to reveal a hidden shadow world as “pretty wacky” in an interview with NBC last week.
The discovery of a concealed mirror world may sound like science fiction from the Stranger Things series, but it has been repeatedly suggested by physicists as a tempting means of explaining anomalous results. However, as yet, hard evidence such a realm exists has refused to manifest itself.
One set of anomalous results, and the ones which inspired the research, date back to the 1990s, when particle physicists were measuring the time it took for neutron particles to break down into protons once they were removed from an atom’s nucleus.
Two separate experiments saw the neutrons broke down at differing rates, instead of decaying and becoming protons at exactly the same rate, as was expected.
In one, the free neutrons were captured by magnetic fields and herded into laboratory bottle traps, and in the other they were detected by the subsequent appearance of proton particles from a nuclear reactor stream.
Those particles fired out in the stream from the nuclear reactor lived on average for 14 minutes and 48 seconds – nine seconds longer than those from the bottle traps.
It may sound like a small difference, but it has troubled scientists.
But the existence of a mirror world offers a credible explanation: That there are two separate neutron lifetimes, and it could be that around 1 per cent of neutrons could be crossing the divide between our reality and the mirror world before crossing back and then emitting a detectable proton.
The new experiment will fire a beam of neutrons at an impenetrable wall. On the other side of the wall, a neutron detector will be set up, which normally would expect to detect nothing.
But if the detector does register the presence of neutrons, the theory is that they may have gone through the wall by “oscillating” into the mirror world – becoming mirror neutrons – and reappearing in this universe, and more specifically the lab in Tennessee.
Haunted Eddy Brothers House: Séances and Bizarre Phenomena
In 1874, uncanny events were happening in the home of William and Horatio Eddy, two middle-aged illiterate brothers, and their sister, Mary.
According to newspaper and Spiritualist accounts in 1874, mysterious incidents were happening in a small Vermont farmhouse near Chittenden where the Eddy’s lived. They resided in a two-story building that was reported to be infested with supernatural entities.
People came from all over the world to experience them in the house that Spiritualists dubbed the “Spirit Capital of the Universe.” Prominent attorney Henry Steel Olcott was a skeptic until he experienced the paranormal incidents.
The Eddy Brothers’ Early Years
William and Horatio were descended from a long line of psychics. Mary Bradbury, a distant relative, was convicted of witchcraft in Salem in 1692. Their grandmother had second sight and often went into trances and spoke to entities that no one else saw.
Their mother, Julia, was known for scaring neighbors with predictions and visions although her husband, Zepaniah, condemned her powers as the work of the Devil. She learned to hide her gifts from the cruel and abusive man.
When the couple had children, strange poundings began shaking the house, disembodied voices were heard in empty rooms, and, allegedly, babies vanished from their cribs. They were discovered in the house and outside.
As William and Horatio grew older, their paranormal powers strengthened. Zepaniah beat them with a rawhide whip. He tried everything he could to stop the paranormal incidents by abusing them. The events continued. He doused the boys with boiling water, on the advice of a “Christian” friend.
When this didn’t work, he allowed this friend to drop a hot coal into William’s hand to exorcize the devils. When he realized that he couldn’t stop them, he was furious.
The boys couldn’t attend school. The strange events, including invisible hands throwing books, levitating desks and objects flying about the room, kept happening.
Zepaniah realized they had money-making potential, so he sold them to a traveling showman, who, for the next fourteen years, took them all over America, Canada and Europe. He challenged audience members to try to awaken the boys from their trances, as part of their performance.
The Eddy’s were locked into small wooden boxes to see if they could escape. Hot wax was poured into their mouths to see if they could produce spirit voices when they were unable to talk. Skeptics poked, prodded and punched the entranced brothers. On several occasions, they were stoned and shot at by angry crowds.
The brothers moved home after their father died. They and Mary opened the farmhouse as an inn, the Green Tavern.
Eddy Brothers’ Validity Challenged
Were they genuine or a hoax? Henry Steel Olcott challenged the authenticity of the events at Eddy House. He had no interest in the paranormal before he read about the brothers in the Spiritualist newspaper, the Banner of Light. Although skeptical, he knew that if the stories were true, they were important in physical science.
Olcott traveled to Vermont, accompanied by newspaper artist Alfred Kappes. They planned to investigate the weird events in the Eddy farmhouse. If the stories were a hoax, they would expose the Eddy’s in the Daily Graphic newspaper as charlatans. If they were genuine, Olcott would confirm the validity of Spiritualism. He was determined to be fair and unbiased.
Olcott’s first impression was that the brothers were belligerent and unfriendly. They weren’t the scamsters he expected. He attended an outdoor séance. A group of ten participants gathered in front of Honto’s Cave, named in honor of the Native American spirit who often appeared there. Olcott investigated the cave and found no other egress. Horatio was the medium for the séance.
He sat on a stool in the cave’s opening and was draped in a makeshift spirit cabinet formed by shawls and branches. As Horatio sat there, a gigantic man, in AmerIndian clothing emerged from the cave. While Horatio spoke to the spirit, someone cried and pointed toward the top of the cave.
There was another enormous AmerIndian. A spectral female materialized on a ledge. Ten specters appeared during the séance. After the séance ended, Olcott and Kappes carefully searched the cave and the surrounding area for footprints. They found none. Olcott found the séance convincing but wanted to try to detect fraud in the farmhouse.
Kappes and he carefully examined the large séance room. Olcott drew maps, charts and diagrams and took numerous measurements because he was sure he would find false panels, secret doors and/or hidden passages. He found nothing. He convinced the newspaper to hire experts to examine the house. Carpenters and engineers were the consultants. They found nothing unusual.
Eddy Brothers’ Validity Established
Each séance was basically the same. Guests sat on wooden benches in the room. A platform was lit by a kerosene lamp, in a barrel. William, the primary medium, got on the platform and entered a small cabinet. Soft voices whispered in the distance.
Often, it was singing, accompanied by phantom music. Musical instruments soared over the heads of the audience, disembodied hands appeared, waving and touching spectators, odd lights and unexplained noises appeared. The first spirit emerged from the cabinet. They materialized, alone or in groups. Some seemed solid; others, transparent and otherworldly.
Olcott examined the spirit cabinet and platform and found no trap doors or hidden passages. There was no room in the cabinet for anyone other than the medium. Olcott was familiar with the work of stage magicians and fake mediums, but couldn’t find any of their trickery in the Eddy house.
The apparitions sang and chatted with the sitters. Phenomena included rappings, moving physical items, spirit paintings, automatic writing, prophecies and levitations.
Olcott concluded that such a show would have required actors, costumes and would have cost a fortune. The brothers were nearly penniless. Olcott believed that fraud would have been physically and financially impossible.
Olcott documented the paranormal events in the newspaper and wrote a book, People from Other Worlds. The book contains meticulous drawings of the apparitions, the grounds, the house and blueprints of its construction that proved there were no hidden passages.
He collected hundreds of affidavits and testimonies to the events and reproduced dozens of statements from respected tradesmen and carpenters who examined the house for trickery.
The Eddy Brothers: Post Script
The Eddy brothers and Mary went their separate ways. Horatio died on September 8, 1922; William on October 25, 1932. Some people are inclined to dismiss the events as fiction; however Olcott’s extensive documentation and investigations imply the events weren’t a hoax.
He was skeptical and analytical during his ten-week stay at the farmhouse and he became a believer.
Sources: Dennis William Hauck, Haunted Places, Penguin Books, 2002., Rosemary Ellen Guiley, The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits, FactsOnFile, 1992., Troy Taylor, “The Strange Mystery of the Eddy Brothers,” www.prairieghosts.com/eddy.html Accessed on October 20, 2011. By Jill Stefko
This story is from a few years ago but I have only just heard about it recently.
A video shared on Facebook from the Philippines shows a mother crying inconsolably at her sons funeral when all of a sudden a white balloon floats from his coffin and towards the mother.
The video was shared by grieving mother Joy Ganda Viber-Alambers.
Witnesses at the funeral believe that the balloon was moved by the spirit of the seven year old boy Trebby who died.
Joy commented next to the video on Facebook “I would like to believe that this was his last mission”
In the video you can see the balloon floating from the coffin and towards the mother. When she looks at the balloon it changes course and moves towards her and around her. She talks to the balloon and hugs it. It hangs around her for a few seconds before floating away.
What do you think of it? Was it the spirit of the child saying goodbye to his mother?