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PopWrapped | Current Events

The World's Most Resilient Bottle Delivers Awesome Postcard 100 Years Later

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PopWrapped

Updated 04/9/2014 10:06pm
The World's Most Resilient Bottle Delivers Awesome Postcard 100 Years Later
Media Courtesy of The Local

Petya Jordanoff

Staff Writer

@PetyaJordanoff

On May 17th, 1913 a young Richard Platz decided to scribble down a note on a modest Danish postcard, shove it into a brown beer bottle and toss it into the Baltic Sea while out hiking. It wasn't seen again for almost 100 years. The card never arrived where he intended it to, instead it landed in the hands of fishermen over 100 years later. When the fishermen opened it, they found a postcard with two German stamps on it and a kind message asking the finder to send it on to Platz's address in Berlin. For a while it was a mystery who the message belonged to but it was the address which helped to determine that it was 20-year-old baker's son Richard Platz who threw the bottle in the Baltic Sea. A Berlin-based genealogical researcher then located his 62-year-old granddaughter Angela Erdmann so that they could return the now precious family heirloom. Handwriting comparison with letters penned by Platz later in life confirmed that he was "without a doubt" the author. Angela Erdmann was first able to hold the aged brown bottle at the Maritime museum in Hamburg. "That was a pretty moving moment," Erdmann shared, "Tears rolled down my cheeks." It appears to be the oldest message in a bottle in the world and will be on display at the museum until May 1, after which experts will get to work trying to decipher the rest of the message. The Guinness World Records had previously identified the oldest message in a bottle as dating from 1914. It spent almost 98 years at sea before being fished out of the water. This bottle beat that bottle out by one year; what a difference 365 days and a lot of seawater can make.Courtesy of The Local

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