• Gaby Triana

Haunt Files #3 - THE QUEEN MARY by Murphy G. Nuñez

The Haunt Files Presents… THE RMS QUEEN MARY

Where in the World?

1126 Queens Highway

Long Beach, CA 90802


When people think about haunted locations, they think about old buildings, hotels, and hospitals. However, in this case, it is an 85-year-old ship that was sailing the seas for more than three decades. The Queen Mary is currently located at Long Beach in California. She has been docked there permanently since October of 1967.

History of Haunted Location:

In 1936, the Queen Mary was the first trigger of a new era of civilized and elegant ocean travel. The rich refused any other method of transportation and marveled at the idea of sailing the seas on a beautiful and grand vessel. The company that built the Queen Mary, Cunard-White Star Line, took advantage of this idea and started their own passenger express modeled after the great Italian and French cruise liners of the 1920s.

The grand ship was built by John Brown & Company in Scotland (Clydebank). The Queen Mary was part of a two-ship weekly express service, along with the RMS Queen Elizabeth, around the early 1930s. On May 27, 1936, she won the Blue Riband, losing the title to the SS Normandie until she won it back in 1938. During the outbreak of WWII, she was temporarily remodeled and converted into a troopship, carrying allied soldiers during the conflict. In October of 1942, she accidentally sank one of the escort ships, splitting it in two, and killing 239 people.

Shortly after the war, she was refitted back into a passenger ship. She continued her voyages until the mid 1960s, when she started to grow more and more unseaworthy. After a lengthy period of decreased profits from Cunard-White Star Line passenger express, the Queen Mary was announced retired, sailing for the last time in 1967. The company’s profits had grown very slim, and they decided to retire the Queen Mary, docking it permanently. It now serves as a great tourist attraction and hotel in Long Beach, California.

After the conversion of the Queen Mary into a hotel, it became known as one of America’s most haunted locations, mostly due to its extremely old age. Its hallways still retain most of the historic interior styles that were used in the 1930s. These styles included very expensive materials in the higher class cabins used to elevate the representation of elegance and modernity, and strong curves and circular windows, to express forms of glamour in the ships interior design. The ocean liner also includes a wide variety of art found throughout the ship, the art includes elaborate murals, paintings, sculptures, and wood carvings (done by Doris Zinkeisen, a Scottish stage theatrical designer). The Queen Mary is widely considered to set one of the best examples in art decoration in America.

Famous Ghosts:

During its 3 decade time of service, 49 people met their end aboard the Queen Mary. There are a few famous ghosts residing in the famous ship, some of which are deceased war victims from WWII, or past passengers that didn’t quite finish their voyage. Famous ghosts include Little Jackie, Grumpy, John Pedder, the woman in the bathing suit, and Dana, all seen by passengers and crew at some point on the ocean liner.

John Pedder: An 18-year-old crew member who was crushed to death at the shaft alley, now know as door #13 (in 1967). No one knows exactly how he met his end. Some say he was too late getting to the other side of the door as it was closing, and some say he was playing a game of chicken and failed. Tour guides coming out of the engine room have seen a darkly clad male figure as they are leaving the escalator area. Guests have identified his face from photographs. The figure always disappears whenever anyone faces it directly.

Dana: The ghost with the saddest backstory of them all, Dana, a young girl who was murdered along with her entire family (apparently in room B-474). She is sometimes heard calling for her mother, usually in the boiler room and occasionally in the second class pool.

The woman in the bathing suit: The spirit of a drowning victim whose name is not known by anyone, but there have been plenty of sightings. Her presence is acknowledged via wet footsteps seen near the pool at night, the footsteps keep going for several meters, but suddenly end near the entrance to the pool.

The Queen Mary, with its long history of transportation and business, not many would assume that there would be so many spirits haunting the ship. All of these entities can be sighted at various locations. There are many more people who have died during their voyage, and many more ghosts roaming the hallways and hotel rooms.

Why visit the Queen Mary?

Along with a stay at the Queen Mary, there are various restaurants to enjoy and many ghost tours and audio tours available, as well as dolphin watching, a helicopter ride, sailing lessons, and the their annual haunted attraction, Dark Harbor. The ghost tours cover almost all of the history and ghosts of the ship.

Dark Harbor

Dark Harbor is a special annual event that occurs every Halloween. General admission allows entry into six different haunted mazes, a 4D theater movie, live entertainment, creepy cabanas, and hundreds of monsters! This is a very extraordinary experience as it is the only big event that occurs on the ship year round, making October the absolute best time to visit the Queen Mary. With all of its deep history and scary activities, visiting the Queen Mary is definitely worth the trip!

For More Information:





Murphy Nuñez is a 9th grader who lives in Miami, is bored out of his mind during the pandemic, and did this to help his mom.

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