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Lost Ship of the Desert (DVJ Radio Program)


Awhile back, I had the pleasure of being the co-host of the Death Valley Jim Radio Program which aired on KPTR 1450 in Palm Springs. During this time, Jim and I had a show on the Lost Ship and here it is, in it’s entirety for your listening pleasure…

Myths and folklore make up a large part of the mystery that surround the desert southwest. One of the most controversial and followed stories, is that of a lost ship that once sailed up the Sea of Cortez – only to get stuck and abandoned by its crew, due to the lowering of the water levels.  Over the years, a handful of people have claimed to have seen a lost ship in the California Desert, but nobody has ever been able to provide solid proof of its existence.

On this week’s program, we explore the stories that surround, “The Lost Ship of the Desert”.



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Comments (2)

  1. admin says:

    Hi Steve,
    First of all, thank you for posting your comments! I have been to Imperial and the government offices in El Centro looking at Jacobsen records many times. Currently, his former property is split between several different companies and private owners, none of which are eager to let anyone look around.. But since you live in the area and if you are willing, see if you can locate some of the old timers that were there in the early 30’s and ask them if they might remember where the house was.. The best place to start would be at a retirement or convalescent home… Also, if you dom’t mind me asking, does it say how much Jacobsen received from the sale of his property?? On either or both of the occasions? I remember reading a report in the local newspaper that he left with roughly $150K, which seems very high for a hog rancher who was in town for less than 15 years… Please let me know if you find anything out and maybe the two of us can actually find where the house was… I might be able to convince them to let us look around….

    John Grasson

  2. Steve Ricks says:

    This is Steve Ricks and I live in Imperial, Calif. I just did some research on the Nels Jacobson story on Nov 29, 2017 and can confirm he had 768 acres of land east of Imperial. Early records of land purchases from the Imperial Valley Land Company are not complete prior to 1906. The document I reviewed started in 1907 with some documented land purchases on earlier years. Good news though, I found the record of Jacobson selling his properties on Feb 15, 1912 and Nov 1, 1914. I now know where his ranch was but not his house. The bad news is all the property is under cultivation with no visual signs of its historic past. Maybe, just maybe some of the ship survived. All of the evidence never really disappears completely. Someone here may have a piece of the ship (Viking or Spanish) and not realize it. Wood and metals back then were reused to serve another purpose. Proving the existence of the ancient ship maybe sitting right under our noses.

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