Expedition Team: Dave Miller

Expedition Date: June 2017 & June 2018

The William S. Mitchell, also known as the USS Nightmare or the Death Dredge, is anchored on the Ohio River on the Kentucky side in Bellevue.  It is a haunted attraction every October.  This steam powered, side-wheeled dredge boat was built in 1934.  Three men were killed during its construction along with another death and dozens of injuries during its inaugural launching ceremony.  This dredge ship’s job was to remove sentiment from the bottom of the Missouri River clearing the way for commercial travel. Crewmembers worked dangerous, long, hard hours. The real life tragedy of the boat is that a total of 112 crewmember deaths took place on this boat throughout its 45 years of service history. Due to all of the crew deaths the ship was nicknamed the Death Dredge. The William S. Mitchell was retired in the mid 1980’s. One day the ship broke loose of its moorings and smashed into several bridges along the Missouri River River in Kansas City. Damage was severe and the boat was bought and brought to Cincinnati.

Participating in the Ohio Paddlefest two consecutive years, I have kayaked up to and taken photos of the Death Dredge. Once the pandemic is over and I have recovered from cancer I plan to see the ship up close at its dock and inquire if they allow paranormal investigations to take place.

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