The mystery of how an island that doesn't exist yet appeared on maps for more than a century has been unraveled.
The researchers steamed ahead for the isle's coordinates after noticing that it appears on some, but not all navigational charts.
At the time, they were unsure of the first recorded mention of Sandy Island -- or Sable Island as it's also called. Either way, when they arrived, there was nothing to be found.
Now, a librarian has apparently unraveled the mystery, the Sydney Morning-Herald reported.
The mistake is attributed to a possible misunderstanding of records from an 1876 whaling expedition, according to the Auckland Museum's Shaun Higgins. The crew on the Velocity spotted a potential hazard to other ships, made a note of its location, and over time, mapmakers turned the treacherous zone into a physical island.
A 1908 chart shows Sandy Island with a note saying it was discovered by the Veloicty, a whaling vessel that traveled the region in 1876, the Telegraph reported.
On the 1908 chart, Sandy Island is outlined with dots and contained an illuminating warning.
"The general details have been collated from the voyages of various navigators extending over a long series of years. The relative position of many dangers may therefore not be exactly given," according to the Auckland Museum's blog, which announced Higgins' finding.
The Velocity's master recorded "heavy breakers" and "sandy islets" in the area and Higgins believes that over time mapmakers came to regard them as an actual landmass.
BEFORE YOU GO
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more informationTrack ballot status
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place