10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True
10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True

10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True

Patrick Lynch - March 16, 2018

10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True
Edgar Allan Poe – Famous Biographies

8 – Did Edgar Allan Poe Predict a Gruesome Murder 45 Years in Advance?

Poe is one of the greatest creators of unusual and macabre tales in American literary history but even he would have been shocked by his apparent fortune-telling skills. In 1838, his only finished novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, was published. In the book, the four-man crew of the ship Grampus found themselves shipwrecked with no food or water. While they found a tortoise to eat, it didn’t provide enough sustenance. Eventually, the crew decides to draw straws to determine which crew member is to be eaten by the others.

Richard Parker, a former mutineer, draws the short straw and is brutally murdered. His feet, hands, and head are tossed into the sea. Two of the remaining members of the crew manage to survive after their act of cannibalism and are eventually rescued. Poe referred to the story as ‘very silly’ but it did serve as a source of inspiration for Jules Verne when he wrote 20,000 Leagues under the Sea and Herman Melville when he wrote Moby Dick. However, the real ‘magic’ of the story took place some 45 years after it was written.

In 1884, a yacht called Mignonette sailed out of England destined for Sydney, Australia. In hindsight, it was a foolish endeavor by the four crew members because their vessel simply wasn’t suitable for such a lengthy journey. It sank en-route and the four men had to escape via a lifeboat. It soon became clear that they lacked the provisions for survival and things were getting desperate. They found a tortoise and ate it but the paltry servings each man received wasn’t enough. One of the crew members fell overboard and tried to drink seawater to satiate his thirst.

This is where the tale gets downright spooky. The man’s name was Richard Parker and his seawater mistake led to his demise. The crew had considered drawing straws but decided that the weakening Parker was the best choice. Had they waited for him to die from his illness, there’s a chance his blood could become contaminated so they stabbed him in the throat. They feasted upon his carcass and it sustained them for long enough to be recused, just like in Poe’s book. Their relief didn’t last long as they were sentenced to death for their crime. However, their sentences were commuted to just six months in prison.

10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True
Abraham Lincoln – Pacific Standard

9 – Abraham Lincoln Dreamed About His Assassination

On April 14, 1865, Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the U.S., was murdered by John Wilkes Booth. The assassination was purportedly part of Booth’s plan to revive the Confederacy and he planned to kill three of the nation’s most important officials. Booth did not act alone, however; he has at least three conspirators and they planned to turn the night into a bloodbath. While Booth was successful, his co-conspirators were not. David Herold and Lewis Powell did not kill William H. Seward, the Secretary of State, and George Atzerodt did not kill Andrew Johnson, the Vice President.

According to Lincoln’s friend, and occasional bodyguard, Ward Hill Lamon, Lincoln predicted his assassination. Lamon claimed that Lincoln shared details of a dream he had just a few days before his death. In it, the president walked into the White House’s East Room where he found a body protected by soldiers and surrounded by a mourning crowd. Lincoln asked one of the soldiers who had died. “The president” was the reply. “He was killed by an assassin.” There are doubts over the veracity of Lamon’s tale and also a suggestion that Lincoln said the corpse wasn’t him.

It seems increasingly likely that Lamon made the entire thing up. He didn’t publish his account for 20 years and it was a reconstruction based on notes he had made at the time. It is also odd that neither he nor Lincoln’s widow, mentioned the dream after the president’s death. However, there is evidence to suggest that the former president was extremely interested in deciphering the meanings of dreams and what they said about the future. In 1863, Lincoln wrote to his wife and said that she should put their son’s pistol away because he “had an ugly dream about him.”

According to members of his cabinet, Lincoln spoke about a dream he had the night before the assassination. In it, he dreamed about sailing rapidly over a body of water but he didn’t know where it was. Lincoln revealed that he had the same dream multiple times before; always before important events during the Civil War. In the end, he was unable to harness the predictive power of dreams and was slain on the night of April 14. Booth became the most wanted man in America and was killed 12 days later.

10 Premonitions of Doom from History That Actually Came True
Carl Jung – Vision.org

10 – Carl Jung Predicted World War I

Carl Gustav Jung is one of the most famous psychoanalysts and psychiatrists of all time and was also an expert in dream analysis. However, he was unprepared for the dreams he began to have in 1913 which suggested that something apocalyptic was about to happen in the world. It was an especially traumatic time for Jung because he had recently broken away from his mentor, Sigmund Freud. Soon after disconnecting himself from Freud’s work, Jung began to have extraordinary visions.

In October 1913, he dreamed about “a monstrous flood covering all the northern and low-lying lands between the North Sea and the Alps […] I realized that a frightful catastrophe was in progress. I saw mighty yellow waves, the floating rubble of civilization, and the drowned bodies of uncounted thousands. Then the whole sea turned to blood.” If this was frightening enough in isolation, Jung had the same vision two weeks later. It was even more vivid and featured a greater emphasis on bloodshed.

At the time, Jung was concerned that these visions were the beginning of psychosis. During 1914, he began to dream of a barren wasteland that surrounded him. In his vision, an Arctic cold froze the land to ice in the middle of the summer. Jung saw the entire Lorraine region as frozen and deserted. Every living thing died because of frost and the dreams occurred just a few months before the outbreak of World War I. Jung said that his last dream of this nature occurred in June 1914 and war broke out on 28 July.

Although it is tempting to believe Jung (on reflection he believed he was dreaming about World War I), it is important to remember that he was in the middle of the most turbulent time of his life. It is possible that the flood represented Jung’s creative life breaking free from the constraints of Freud’s psychology. The ‘drowned bodies’ could have referred to the death of old ideas that don’t fit into Jung’s new way of seeing things. Perhaps Jung did see the destruction of the war in his visions or maybe it was nothing more than series of dreams that focused on Jung’s new path.


Where Did We Get This Stuff? Here Are Our Sources

“Aberfan: The mistake that cost a village its children.” Ceri Jackson, BBC News. October 2016.

Smithsonian Magazine – The True Story Of The Aberfan Disaster

Daily Mail – Yes, We Do Have A Sixth Sense: The In-Depth Study Of Our Intriguing Dreams That Convinced One Doctor

The Independent – Aberfan Disaster: What Happened During The 1966 Tragedy

“The strange mystery of flight 191, and the 5 times it crashed. – Strange Unexplained Mysteries. December 2020.

“Oscar Pistorius trial: Reeva Steenkamp had ‘chilling premonition of her death” Andy Rudd in The Mirror. June 2013.

Chicago Tribune – The Legacy Of Flight 191

Biography – Oscar Pistorius: The Rise and Fall of the Olympian Turned Killer

BBC News – Oscar Pistorius Trial: Why Culpable Homicide, Not Murder

The Guardian – Oscar Pistorius Trial: The Full Story, Day By Day

“Author ‘Predicts’ Titanic Sinking, 14 Years Earlier.” Heba Hasan in Time Magazine. April 2012.

History Channel – 7 Facts About the 1993 World Trade Center Bombing

“Disaster Predictions: People Claim Premonitions of September 11 Attacks, Japanese Tsunami.” Eamon McNiff and Harry Phillips in ABC News. October, 2012.

“Did Sharon Tate Dream of her Murder by the Manson Family Two Years Before It Happened?” Jason Schafer in Dangerous Minds. February 2015.

The Sun – Who Was Sharon Tate And When Was She Murdered By The Manson Family?

“A New Twist Emerges in Princess Diana’s Death.” Nico Hines in The Daily Beast. August, 2013.

The Independent – At Last, The Brutal Truth About The Crash That Killed Dodi And Diana

The Independent – Princess Diana Letter Claims Prince Charles Was ‘Planning An Accident’ In Her Car Just 10 Months Before Fatal Crash

CBS – Lincoln Assassination: The Other Murder Attempt

“Edgar Allan Poe’s Eerie Richard Parker Coincidence.” Stacy Conradt in Mental Floss. February, 2012.

“The End of Civilization: Did Jung Underestimate the Significance of His Own Dreams?” John Goldhammer in The Jung Page. October 2013.