I'll send an SOS to the world

I'll send an SOS to the world

I hope that someone gets my

Message in a bottle

---The Police "Message in a Bottle"

An Australian couple discovered the world's oldest message in a bottle during a stroll on the beach at Wedge Island, nearly 132 years after it was thrown into the sea.

According to the BBC, the note in the bottle, which was dated June 12, 1886, was tossed off of the German ship Paula, as part of an experiment into ocean and shipping routes by the German Naval Observatory.

Thousands of bottles were thrown overboard during the 69-year German experiment but to date only 662 messages - and no bottles - had been returned. The last bottle with a note to be found was in Denmark in 1934.

Tonya Illman, who found the bottle while walking the beach and helping to pick up rubbish, thought it might look nice on her mantle. She passed the bottle "to my son's girlfriend, who saw what she thought was a rolled-up cigarette, and tipped it out with the sand".

Tonya tried to untie the string around the paper, but it was rather fragile, so they took it home and put it in the oven for five minutes to dry up the moisture.

Once untied, they took the message to the experts at the Western Australian Museum, who consulted with members of museums in Germany and the Netherlands, and found the ship's original journal and an entry for the day which corresponded EXACTLY to the note in the bottle --and the handwriting matched as well.

The previous record was 108 years between the message being sent and found.


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