Man with metal detector turns up rare 2,000-year-old Roman artifact

My dad used to enjoy combing the beach (and his backyard) with a metal detector, but unfortunately he never dug up anything like this 2,000-year-old Roman ingot that metal detector hobbyist (metal detective? metal detectorist!) Rob Jones found in a field in Rossett, Wales, UK. The lead object is approximately one-half meter long and weighs 63 kilograms. The Wrexham County Borough Museum & Archives purchased the artifact for an undisclosed price and will put it on display. Once COVID-19 mandates permit, the museum and the University of Chester plan to conduct archaeological research in the area. From the Shropshire Star:

The rare find is particularly significant for archaeologists and historians because of its potentially early date, the location of the find spot, and because of its unique inscription.

"We don’t yet know where this ingot has come from and we will probably never know where it was going to," [said local Finds Officer Susie White.] "However given the find spots of other ingots from Britain of similar date, it may have been destined for continental Europe, perhaps even Rome itself. The object could tell us a great deal about this important period of our past, a period which is still poorly understood in this area of the country.”

Read the rest

Lost and found: $200,000 in gold bars

Someone left a package of gold bars worth $190,000 on a Swiss Federal Railways train on its from St Gallen to Lucerne. Authorities have spent nine months trying to find the rightful owner to no avail. Now, the public prosecutors office is seeking the public's help in finding the absent-minded individual who left them behind. From CNN:

In a bulletin dated June 2, officials said the owner has five years to make a claim for the treasure.

A spokesperson for the prosecutor's office told CNN that several inquiries had been made about the gold and were being checked. Not details about the nature of the checks were given.

image: Agnico-Eagle Mines Limited (CC0) Read the rest

Someone found the $1 million treasure chest in the Rocky Mountains

A decade ago, Santa Fe author and antiques dealer Forrest Fenn, 89, hid a treasure chest containing $1 million in gold, diamonds, rubies, and emeralds somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. A poem in Fenn's memoir, titled "The Thrill of the Chase," contained clues to the treasure's location and he hoped hunting for it would inspire families to enjoy nature and the adventure. (For more, watch the 2016 video above.) Now, Fenn reports that someone from "back East" found the treasure but does not want to be named. It's a wonderful tale except for the deaths, lawsuits, and arrests. From the Santa Fe New Mexican:

An estimated 350,000 people have hunted for Fenn’s treasure. Some quit their jobs to do so. But it’s had deadly consequences. At least five people have died while searching for the chest.

Barbara Andersen, a Chicago real estate attorney, said she is filing an injunction in federal District Court alleging she solved the puzzle but was hacked by someone she doesn’t know.

“He stole my solve,” she said in an interview. “He followed and cheated me to get the chest."[...]

And still others believe the treasure never existed — or had already been given away.

“I think his announcement is at least a few years, and a few lives, too late. But he has to live with that. I believe this was over much earlier than today,” said treasure hunter Seth Wallack.

"Forrest Fenn confirms his treasure has been found" (Santa Fe New Mexican) Read the rest

Florida man stored jars of preserved human tongues in his crawlspace

In Gainseville, Florida, a routine crawlspace inspection turned up jars of preserved human tongues that date back to the 1960s. Police are currently investigating whether the tongues were related to research conducted by the home's previous owner, Ronald A. Baughman, a University of Florida professor emeritus whose work focused on oral medicine and surgery. (WCJB)

More in this Reddit post by RandoSurfer77: "I found human remains today in a crawlspace under a home."

(image: imgur) Read the rest

Florida fisherman catches parachutes and capsule door from SpaceX crew capsule

Last week, charter fishing boat captain David Stokes was fishing off the Daytona Beach coast when he reeled in a capsule door and two parachutes that were part of a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft. On January 19, SpaceX conducted a successful in-flight abort test of their Crew Dragon that involved exploding the Falcon 9 rocket and releasing the capsule to carry the crew to safety. From UPI:

Stokes said he has attempted to contact SpaceX and tagged Elon Musk in a tweet about the discovery in the hopes of bringing it to their attention.

"I'd like for SpaceX to come check it out to see what they think about it ... any damage to it," Stokes told WKMG-TV. "It would also be awesome to have Elon Musk autograph it."

Read the rest

Solved: mystery of random cash rolls appearing on sidewalks in UK village

In November, we posted that mysterious rolls of cash were showing up on sidewalks in the small English village of Blackhall Colliery, on the North Sea coast of County Durham. In the last 5 years, around US$30,000 had been found in twelve rolls. Now, the mystery has been solved. Two anonymous individuals have been placing the bundles on the sidewalk as random acts of kindness. From CNN:

The generous pair voluntarily came forward to the police after residents were left puzzled by the regular appearance of cash bundles, which have been found 12 times in Blackhall Colliery since 2014.

The couple, who have asked to remain anonymous, received unexpected windfalls and wanted to leave the money to help people, Durham Constabulary said in a statement.

They chose Blackhall Colliery as they had an "emotional connection" to the village after being helped by a resident, police added.

The pair would often stay to make sure the cash had been picked up, police said.

It is not clear whether the pair will continue to leave cash, but police said that any money handed in will be returned to the finder.

Read the rest

Boy finds massive woolly mammoth tooth outside Ohio inn

A 12-year-old boy found this woolly mammoth molar outside his family's inn near Ohio's Honey Run Creek. From a post on the Inn at Honey Run's site:

Jackson writes in an account of the discovery, “I found the mammoth tooth about ten yards upstream from the bridge we had our family pictures on. It was partially buried on the left side of the creek. It was completely out of the water on the creek bed.”

Within a few days, the item was indeed identified by numerous scholars and professors including Dale Gnidovec of The Ohio State University’s Orton Geological Museum, Nigel Brush of Ashland University’s Geology Department, and P. Nick Kardulias College of Wooster’ Program of Archeology.

Now, Jackson awaits the safe return of his tooth, also writing, “I would like to have my tooth back in my hands as soon as possible. I want to show my friends.”

Read the rest

Are you the owner of this jetliner? If so, please move it immediately.

There is an abandoned McDonnell Douglas MD87 jetliner parked on the tarmac of Adolfo Suárez-Madrid Barajas airport in Spain. If this is your jetliner, the airport asks that you please move it immediately. Apparently, the plane has been illegally parked for some years. From CNN:

Airport director Elena Mayoral submitted an official notice to the Boletín Oficial del Estado, the official gazette of the Kingdom of Spain, informing the nation of a plane in an "obvious state of abandonment" at the airport...

Under Spanish law, authorities must publish official notices about the plane for three consecutive months and then wait a year to see if the owner comes forward to claim it.

If they do not, the plane will be considered legally abandoned and will be sold off by the state at a public auction.

From El País:

In 1990, the airplane flew for the first time for Iberia, according to online magazine Preferente.com. Eighteen years later it was acquired by Pronair, a charter airline headquartered in Albacete in Castilla-La Mancha. But the airline, which at one point was flying regularly to China, closed down in just a year due to the increase in fuel prices and the 2008 financial crisis.

Two years later, the plane was acquired by Saicus Air, a Spanish airline based in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands. The airline operated two airplanes from Madrid and up until that point, had been dedicated to transporting cargo. The plane was meant to fly passengers between Spain and the Republic of Guinea Bissau in west Africa.

Read the rest