S.S. Jesmond was the name of the British ship that allegedly discovered and landed on an uncharted island in the Atlantic in March 1882. Captain David Robson went ashore with a landing party who claimed to have found a variety of artefacts, including “bronze swords, rings, and mallets, together with carvings of birds and animals…..and what appeared to be a mummy enclosed in a stone case.” Many of the finds including the sarcophagus were brought back to the ship.
The Times Picayune of New Orleans printed a report that it got from one of the sailors. The newspaper claimed that Captain Robson intended to present the objects brought on board to the British Museum on his return home.>The British Museum found no record of the Robson collection.(b)<
This whole story raises many questions:
(i) The island has not been seen since
(ii) In the competitive merchant-shipping world of the 1880’s no captain would waste two days exploring any island.
(iii) The British Museum has no record of receiving any such collection
(iv) The log of the S.S. Jesmond was ‘destroyed’ during the London Blitz in 1940.
(v) The New Orleans newspaper retracted their story afterwards.
(vi) The S.S. Jesmond arrived in New Orleans on April 1st!
(vii) Ignatius Donnelly’s book Atlantis was published in February 1882!!
>As late as 1955, the story was still being recycled as probably true(a), but was finally debunked a year later, thanks to research by Lawrence Hills in the US(c).
(a) Atlantis, Volume 9, No.1, November 1955
(b) Atlantis, Volume 9, No.4, May 1956
(c) Atlantis, Volume 10, No.1, November 1965<