9 August 2010, JellyBean @ 7:23 pm

THE mystery of three lighthouse keepers who vanished from a bleak Scottish island has been solved – nearly a century later.

A descendant of one of the men has pieced together a jigsaw of clues to crack the puzzle of Flannan Isle.

And it is now accepted that the trio at the centre of one of the greatest sea riddles were washed to their deaths by a monster wave that could have towered more than 100ft high.

Retired Lewis lobster fisherman Donald Macaulay, 74, delved into the history of the lighthouse built in 1899 and situated 20 miles west of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides.

On December 15, 1900 a passing ship reported the light was not lit and the Northern Lighthouse Board sent a boat to investigate.

Because of severe storms the boat was unable to reach Flannan until Boxing Day.

When relief keeper Joseph Moore and crew members landed they could find no sign of keepers James Ducat, Thomas Marshall and Donald McArthur.

When they climbed to the top of the 75ft lighthouse the lamp was full of fuel, trimmed and ready to be lit. In the men’s living quarters everything was in place, tidy and shipshape, but the last entry in the log was for the morning of Saturday, December 15.

For three days the men searched every nook and cranny on the tiny 40-acre island for the missing men.

Over the years bizarre theories sprang up to explain the mystery.

After the discovery of strange seaweed on the island some said they had been taken by a sea monster, others said they must have been murdered by pirates.

In their official report into the disappearance the Lighthouse Board “failed to come to a conclusive decision”.

Read more here: BNet News

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