Benjamin Bathurst Disappearance


Benjamin Bathurst Disappearance

In the early 1800’s a minor British diplomat and his attendant were making their way across a broken Europe under false names when he disappeared without a trace.

This article covers the mystery of the Benjamin Bathurst disappearance…

Troubled Times

In 1809 the majority of Europe was in a bit of a mess – neighbor was fighting neighbor causing simple journeys to become quite an adventure.

On November the 25th Benjamin Bathurst and his attendant were making one of these dangerous journeys across Europe. They were worried about standing out as British so they both took on false names in a bid to stay ‘under the radar’.

On this day in November they arrived at Perleberg, near Berlin where Bathurst requested new horses for the remainder of the journey. They left their chaise to be set up and retired to a local inn.

After eating a hearty meal, Bathurst found a quiet lounge to the side of the inn and started to work on correspondence. A few locals witnessed him sitting by the fireplace writing and then hastily burning portions of writing.

The Benjamin Bathurst Disappearance

At about nine in the evening Bathurst and his attendant were informed that the chaise was now set up with fresh horses. They decided that it made sense to travel under the cover of darkness when most people would have retired to bed.

Bathurst left the inn first with his attendant less than five meters behind him. He then took the long way around the chaise examining the horses before getting to his side of the carriage.

Bathurst’s attendant decided to follow the diplomat to make sure he was comfortable getting into the carriage. When he got to the door of the vehicle there was no sign of Bathhurst.

The attendant quickly rounded the chaise but could not find his master anywhere. He went back inside the inn and gathered a large group of locals to help him search for the missing diplomat.

The group helped him search the local area for over an hour but there was no sign of the British diplomat anywhere.

The Aftermath

Communication was not exactly effective in the early 1800’s so it took several weeks for the news of the missing diplomat to reach Britain.

On November 26th the local Perleberg authorities were informed about the disappearance and they immediately searched the local river bed. They found no sign of Bathurst.

The next day the authorities decided to carry out a house-to-house search to see if they could find an answer to the mystery. During these house raids they came across Bathurst’s heavy coat in a outhouse.

The family that owned this particular outhouse was named Schmidt and they were well known in the area. The respectable family denied any knowledge of how the coat had ended up there.

On December 16th a report came in from two local women who had been taking a walk through the nearby woods. They had come across a pair of pants which were later proven to belong to Bathurst.

The pants had two bullet holes shot through them but there was a lack of any blood evidence. This indicated to authorities that the clothing had been shot after it was taken off the diplomat.

Bathurt’s wife eventually got wind of his disappearance and traveled to Perleberg herself to find out what had happened to her husband. Once she arrived she immediately put up a high reward offer for anyone who had information on her husband’s whereabouts.

The reward was cancelled after several days due to the amount of hoax responses from local opportunists.

There are several theories on what happened to Benjamin Bathurst but none of them manage to explain how he disappeared within a blink of an eye. If you have any thoughts or opinions on the Benjamin Bathurst disappearance please leave them in the comment section below.

27 comments on “Benjamin Bathurst Disappearance

  1. Interesting topic to blog about Chris. Everyone likes to talk about and argue what they do not know about. haha. Espcially trying to understand what history has told us otherwise. Do you have anything on the city of atlantis? I am fascinated with the lost city and want to know your thoughts on it?

    1. I think there is a post here somewhere on Atlantis Eric – I seem to remember publishing one within the first month of our launch ( when we started this site off! ). Glad you enjoyed the article mate 🙂
      Call back again anytime!

  2. Strange indeed, I love a good mystery (ie. sherlock Holmes”. The Benjamin Bathurst disappearance sounds just as good as some of the missing person scenerios that go on nowadays. My husband is intrigued by ttrue stories like this, and may verywell have heard about the case. I’ll bring it up to him tonight at dinner.

  3. Wow, it sounds like he may have wanted to take a powder from the whole situation and just made himself disappear.
    Interesting story.
    I wonder if he just simply planned on splitting.
    I love your website and I bookmarked it as I want to read more of your stories.
    What do you think happened to him?


    1. Hi Shaun,
      I really don’t know what happened to him but it could be down to the locals that saw him in the inn. Maybe they ‘clocked’ that he was a wealthy-type man and snatched him quickly outside? Then again – how did they manage to kidnap him so quickly ( within a matter of seconds? ). It’s a real mystery 🙂

  4. Mysteries story and interesting topic Chris.
    Who knows what happened to that man. If no one could find out after these years then, it may always stay an unsolved puzzle.
    Thank you for the entertaining article.
    By the way, I like the theme of your site. You’ve done a good job 🙂

    1. Hi there Ashkan,
      Glad you enjoyed the mystery of Benjamin Bathurst so much! The theme of the site is a dynamic WordPress option – I’ve used it since the first article I published here and I’ve never felt the need to change it ( it seems a good fit! ).
      Great to see you here – stop by again anytime 🙂

  5. Mysteries are fun and interesting!
    The name Benjamin Bathurst is a pretty catchy name too. Strange how he could disappear/taken so quickly though.

    Hahaha – too bad this case is so old, it would make a great “Unsolved Mysteries” story on TV.

    I enjoy your site and have bookmarked!

    1. Hi Joanne,
      Yeah I’m afraid it’s probably a little too old to fit into Unsolved Mysteries ( a program I LOVE! ).

  6. I’ve always been interested in this story. There are so many different theories about what really happened, ranging from murder to the supernatural!
    From what I understand it is widely believed he was murdered by Auguste Schmidt? Definitely an interesting mystery that we might never know the truth about.
    Great writing, well done.

    1. Hi there Lynne,
      Yeah there are many theories out there that link his disappearance to the Schmidt family – I guess we’ll never really know the truth of the matter 🙂

  7. Oh, I love a good mystery!! I think I agree with what Shawn has said – it could be that he was wanting to escape and simply did a runner. The writings he was burning could have been ‘Dear John’ letters to his wife which he couldn’t get just right. He was five metres ahead of his assistant leaving the inn, which is quite a bit for someone concerned for their own safety… and I’m sure he could have asked his attendant to check on the horses while he got himself safely into the carriage. Also, who’s idea was it to leave at night….? Perfect for making off unseen. And why would a criminal waste 2 good bullets on someone’s empty clothing?
    Incidentally, do we know what the purpose of his travels were, given that it was so dangerous to do so…..?
    Gripping story that I’ve never heard before – thank you 🙂

    1. Hi Jyl,
      All good points you brought up there! I agree with you – the choice to travel at night does seem a bit of a weird one overall. I’m unsure on the reasons behind his journey – one would expect something to do with his position/job.

  8. Hi Chris,
    Interesting story about Benjamin Bathurst. This article reminds of the “Unexplained Mysteries” show on TV. It’s sad that people continue to go missing even today and there are probably more unsolved than solved disappearances. Thank goodness forensic science has come so far and can be of help today but poor Benjamin may never be found!

  9. There are so many strange stories out there to investigate and relate to the willing public. I am sure that many of your readers will share some of their own for you to investigate and retell.
    These events are not really my cup of tea but good on you for following a subject that interests you.
    How long have you followed these unexplained mysteries?

    1. Hi Duncan,
      I followed all things unexplained ever since I was a young child – my parents were quite happy I was reading so much so they used to buy me numerous books on the subject. I loved it 🙂

  10. Such a creepy story. I was just influenced by my boyfriend these kinfd of stories. Have you heard about the Taured man? That’s wonderful!!

    1. Hi Nikki,
      I actually wrote an article on the Man From Taured for another website – I should really think about writing one for this site now you’ve brought it up…

  11. Love these kinds of stories, but it’s the first time I’ve read about this one. 🙂 I’m actually thinking that somehow someway, there’s truth in these stories that we are not discovering or we cannot comprehend yet, but definitely there’s an explanation why these things happen. I’ve read stories like this, and such explanations or theories could be spontaneous time or interdimensional travel, just like the story of Rudolph Fentz… Or could be aliens, I dunno XD

    Anyway Chris, have you heard about a man named Håkan Nordkvist? Already read his story but I have limited sources about him. Would love to check it out if you would post it here to see if you can gather additional info. More power! 🙂

    1. Hi Caleb,
      We did a post on Håkan Nordkvist a while back but unfortunately the information out there is limited ( it was posted to another website I own! ). Will have to look into gathering more info and covering his story once again for this site 🙂

  12. I love these pages, they give informative information regarding things of the unexplained. I always seem to look when its getting a bit late on, for some reason. No wonder my dreams are so vivid .
    As I was reading all about Benjamin Bathhurst, I started thinking about aliens, yes I am clearly mad, so I clicked on the link to Route 66, thinking it was going to be that, I had my wires crossed.
    Do you know if Aliens built the Pyramids?

    1. Hi LJ,

      There are many reports out there linking alien life forms to the pyramids – we’ve covered a few of them here! ( try using the search bar on the top right of the site! ).

  13. Nice, I am always interested in mysterious disappearances and other mysteries.

    This story about Bathurst is especially intriguing because of how quick he vanished. I think to be able to disappear like that without a trace, Bathurst may have himself planned to run away from something. Please do tell us if you found more information .

    One of the best disappearances to me was one that happened to Lars Mittank, a german man who ran off without his luggages from the Bulgaria airport and never returned. Have you heard of him?

  14. If he vanished on his own…could he have planted his coat and his pants to get people off his trail? Even if it meant framing someone innocent? You really never know about people on the inside.

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