On May 27, 1936, the RMS Queen Mary set sail from Southampton, England, completing her maiden voyage in New York just a few days later. For the next three years, the ship was the height of luxury, transporting such notable passengers as Clark Cable, Bob Hope, Elizabeth Taylor, and Winston Churchill. Its elaborate facilities included two indoor swimming pools, beauty salons, libraries, tennis courts, and more. However, the luxurious amenities didn’t last.
In 1939, the Queen Mary was stripped down and began service as a World War II troop transport ship. For the next eight years, the ship hauled tens of thousands of servicemen across the sea, earning the nickname the Grey Ghost due to its color and speed. After the war ended, the Queen Mary was refitted for passenger travel and again served as a luxury liner until retiring from service in 1967.
Now permanently moored in Long Beach, California, the Queen Mary serves as a popular tourist attraction, complete with restaurants, a museum, and a hotel. Legend has it the historic ship is also haunted by the men, women, and children who died aboard.
Little Ghost Girl
A little girl named Jackie reportedly haunts the second-class swimming pool. Legend has it she drowned there, though there are no historical records of such an event. Nevertheless, staff and visitors report seeing a child’s ghostly figure near the pool. An elderly woman in black and white also haunts the area. Is that Jackie in the photo below?
The Curacoa Disaster
On October 2, 1942, the Queen Mary accidentally rammed and sank her escort ship, the HMS Curacoa, as she carried over 10,000 troops to Europe. More than 200 men died in the collision, and now Queen Mary staff and visitors reportedly hear strange sounds coming from the ship’s bow.
In 1988, a former marine engineer told Unsolved Mysteries he once heard the sound of water pouring into the Queen Mary. Thinking there had been a rupture of some kind, the man rushed to investigate but found nothing unusual. The engineer later learned he’d been in the part of the ship that had collided with the Curacoa. Unsolved Mysteries also left a voice-activated recorder in the same area and reportedly captured the sounds of rushing water, tearing metal, and crying men.
The Crushed Man
A man named John Peddler reportedly haunts the lower area of the ship. It seems John was crushed by Door 13 during a routine drill and now lingers near the site of his death. The legend got its start after witnesses claimed to see a bearded man in blue overalls disappear in front of the ill-fated door.
A Ship of Spirits
According to a plaque on the ship, at least 16 crew members died on the Queen Mary, succumbing to everything from tetrachloride poisoning to a fall from the gangway. Some reports place the total number of deaths, including passengers and servicemen, at 49. Is it possible the men, women, and children who died aboard still roam the ship today? Or are the stories nothing more than fanciful legends?