I do love conspiracy theories and here is one of the best. On this date, October 28 in 1943, at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard in Philadelphia, a naval military experiment often called the Philadelphia Experiment took place … allegedly. According to published reports the USS Eldridge turned invisible to eye witnesses for a brief moment, dematerialized, teleported to Norfolk, Virginia, and then reappeared in Philadelphia. The experiment supposedly had some horrific side effects on the sailors who either became extremely sick, insane or among other things, became engulfed in flames; many of the crew never led normal lives again. Since this had a few negative consequences on overall morale, the Navy halted the experiment and silenced the whole affair … allegedly.
The U.S. Navy of course has always stated that the experiment never occurred and many refer to the entire narrative as a misguided and absurd hoax. It doesn’t matter that many details of the Philadelphia Experiment contradict some of the facts about the Eldridge. (The USS Eldridge was not commissioned until late August 1943 and remained in port in New York City until September, 1943. During the month of October the ship was undergoing training exercises in the Bahamas -or was it the Bermuda triangle! - and never made it to Philadelphia that year. But who cares!) Conspiracy theories don’t get much more fun than this. Take this gem and sprint with it baby, because this where it all starts, this is the granddaddy of them all, from here countless Conspiracies can be traced, directly tripping into other conspiratorial ideologues of covert governments, secret organizations, murder corporations and agendas for world domination.
According to carefully scrutinize accounts, the experiment was conducted by a Dr. Franklin Reno, (or was it a German/Austrian scientist named Rinehart?), as a military application of Einstein's unified field theory. The experiment would attempt a successful connection between gravity and electromagnetism: electromagnetic space-time warping.
The theory hypothesis: there is an interconnected element to electromagnetic radiation and gravity, and when a special application of that theory is pursued, with the right equipment and with a sufficient amount of energy, light can bend around an object in such a way as to render it basically invisible to the human eye. With the Navy in the midst of World War Two and major naval battles across the South Pacific, such an application would have priceless military worth. The USS Eldridge was fitted with the required paraphernalia at the naval yards in Philadelphia during the early summer of 1943.
One test took place on July 22nd, the result had the Eldridge being rendered almost completely invisible, with some eye witnesses reporting a “greenish fog” in its place. However, crew members complained of severe nausea afterwards. At that point, the experiment was altered at the request of the Navy, with a slightly different objective of achieving invisibility only from enemy radar.
After several more months of considerable re-calculations and innumerable equipment changes and immeasurable manpower, the experiment was attempted again on October 28. This time, the Eldridge not only became invisible but actually vanished from the area in a flash of blue light. Moments later in Norfolk, Virginia - 375 miles away - the Eldridge was reported offshore, at which point the Eldridge vanished from Norfolk reappearing in Philadelphia, at the same dock it had originally occupied, apparently and accidentally teleporting to and from the Virginia naval station.
The psychological effects on the Eldridge crew were said to be significant. Almost all of the crew became violently ill. Some experienced seizures and seem to be suffering from immediate, severe insanity, their behavior consistent with extremely paranoid schizophrenia. Other sailors literally vanished, five crew members purportedly were fused to the metal bulkhead of the ship, and still others seem to fade in and out of sight. All of the surviving crew involved were honorably discharged, though some had to first undergo brainwashing techniques in an effort to scramble their memories of the Philadelphia Experiment.
Fact or fiction, madness or message, this is the stuff that conspiracy theorists eat up, it’s a five star, seven course meal of the weirdly wild and the wildly weird world out there; just wait, sit back, relax, have a bite, there's more to come ...