Has the HMS Terror Shipwreck Been Found in Arctic Canada?

The long-sought shipwreck of the HMS Terror has reportedly been located, more than 160 years after it disappeared in the Canadian Arctic.

The discovery comes two years after the identification of Terror’s sister ship, the HMS Erebus. It’s hoped that the wrecks could illuminate the desperate end of Sir John Franklin’s mission to find the Northwest Passage in the 1840s. All 129 crew members from the polar expedition for British Royal Navy died after the ships became stranded in ice.

A team from the Arctic Research Foundation aboard the research vessel Martin Bergmann said they located the sunken ship last week in King William Island’s uncharted Terror Bay, according to The Guardian, which first reported the discovery. Over the weekend, the researchers sent a robotic vehicle underwater to explore the ship.

Video footage shows that the ship has been quite well preserved in frigid waters 80 feet below the surface—rope, an exhaust pipe, a mess-hall table, glass panes, wine bottles, the bell, and even the helm are intact.

Adrian Schimnowski, the foundation’s operations director, claimed there were still plates on the shelves in the food storage room. The research team believes the ship sank gently to the seafloor.

Parks Canada, the government agency that has been leading efforts to search for and explore Terror and Erebus, said that it is working with its partners to validate the details of the discovery. But the news was already being cheered by the community of shipwreck hunters and historians.

“Seeing the images of HMS Terror—her bowsprit still set, her bell, her railings, all in pristine order—feels as profound a moment as when a camera first passed over the bow of the Titanic,” Russell Potter, author of Finding Franklin: The Untold Story of a 165-Year Search, said in a statement given to mental_floss by the Royal Canadian Geographical Society.

“We’re witnesses to a discovery, the end result of a century and a half of searches, that will profoundly alter, augment—and doubtless complicate—our understanding of the final fate of the Franklin expedition,” Potter said.

The murky fate of the Franklin expedition has long captured the imagination of historians, amateur sleuths, and authors from Mark Twain to Margaret Atwood.

In May 1845, the crew left England aboard two ships, Erebus and Terror, in search of the Northwest Passage—a sea route that would connect the Atlantic and Pacific. The expedition then disappeared in the eastern Arctic Archipelago, touching off an exhaustive search.

In 1859, one of the several search parties funded by Franklin’s wife, Lady Jane Franklin, found a message left in a cairn on Victory Point that hinted at what happened: Both ships had become trapped in ice in late 1846. Franklin died on June 11, 1847. The 105 remaining surviving crew members finally left their ice-choked ships on April 22, 1848, to try to reach a faraway trading post on foot. None of them were ever found alive.

Personal items and other relics abandoned the Franklin expedition were picked up by Inuit people and search parties over the next several decades. The dozens of artifacts include wooden toggles, teacups, spectacle lenses, and telescope lenses, many of which are now housed in the UK’s National Maritime Museum.

Inuit people who saw or came into contact with Franklin’s team also gave testimonies to the search parties. One account suggested Franklin’s men had resorted to cannibalism to survive, which fueled sensational headlines in England but was met with skepticism. In a study published in the International Journal of Osteoarcheology last year, scientists reexamined human remains from the Franklin expedition and found that the bones indeed had the signatures of late-stage cannibalism; they were cracked open and had “pot polishing,” an effect that occurs when bones are boiled to extract the marrow fat. 

The final resting place of the ships had also been a mystery until recently. Two years ago, the Erebus was located using sonar, and divers have since pulled up artifacts from the sunken ship such as a ceramic ointment pot, belt buckles, glass window fragments, and a portion of the ship’s wheel.

“The fate of Franklin represents the greatest of all polar exploration mysteries,” said John Geiger, CEO of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. “We all excitedly await the work of Parks Canada’s underwater archaeologists as they now investigate the wreck of the Terror, together with Erebus.”

Primary and banner image: screenshot of helm from Arctic Research Foundation video

Afternoon Map
The Most Searched Shows on Netflix in 2017, By State

Orange is the New Black is the new black, at least as far as Netflix viewers are concerned. The women-in-prison dramedy may have premiered in 2013, but it’s still got viewers hooked. Just as they did in 2017, took a deep dive into Netflix analytics using Google Trends to find out which shows people in each state were searching Netflix for throughout the year. While there was a little bit of crossover between 2016 and 2017, new series like American Vandal and Mindhunter gave viewers a host of new content. But that didn’t stop Orange is the New Black from dominating the map; it was the most searched show in 15 states.

Coming in at a faraway second place was American Vandal, a new true crime satire that captured the attention of five states (Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin). Even more impressive is the fact that the series premiered in mid-September, meaning that it found a large and rabid audience in a very short amount of time.

Folks in Alaska, Colorado, and Oregon were all destined to be disappointed; Star Trek: Discovery was the most searched-for series in each of these states, but it’s not yet available on Netflix in America (you’ve got to get CBS All Access for that, folks). Fourteen states broke the mold a bit with shows that were unique to their state only; this included Big Mouth in Delaware, The Keepers in Maryland, The OA in Pennsylvania, GLOW in Rhode Island, and Black Mirror in Hawaii.

Check out the map above to see if your favorite Netflix binge-watch matches up with your neighbors'. For more detailed findings, visit

Afternoon Map
Monthly Internet Costs in Every Country

Thanks to the internet, people around the world can conduct global research, trade tips, and find faraway friends without ever leaving their couch. Not everyone pays the same price for these digital privileges, though, according to new data visualizations spotted by Thrillist.

To compare internet user prices in each country, cost information site created a series of maps. The data comes courtesy of English market research consultancy BDRC and, which teamed up to analyze 3351 broadband packages in 196 nations between August 18, 2017 and October 12, 2017.

In the U.S., for example, the average cost for internet service is $66 per month. That’s substantially more than what browsers pay in neighboring Mexico ($27) and Canada ($55). Still, we don’t have it bad compared to either Namibia or Burkina Faso, where users shell out a staggering $464 and $924, respectively, for monthly broadband access. In fact, internet in the U.S. is far cheaper than what residents in 113 countries pay, including those in Saudi Arabia ($84), Indonesia ($72), and Greenland ($84).

On average, internet costs in Asia and Russia tend to be among the lowest, while access is prohibitively expensive in sub-Saharan Africa and in certain parts of Oceania. As for the world’s cheapest internet, you’ll find it in Ukraine and Iran.

Check out the maps below for more broadband insights, or view’s full findings here.

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site

[h/t Thrillist]


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