Message in a Bottle Found: Seeking Ray from Philadelphia!



Howdy folks! Today’s post is a plea for your help: I found a message in a bottle from someone named Ray who lives in Philadelphia, but I need help finding Ray!

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WWI Messages in Bottles from Australian Soldiers, Sent on Christmas 1915, Told of Female Stowaway


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New Year’s Day, 1916, three messages in bottles washed ashore right beside each other near Portland Bay, Victoria, Australia. Three!

All three bottled notes were written by Australian soldiers from New South Wales, sailing on their way to WWI. The incident, including the story of how one bottle was forwarded to the mother of the writer, was shared by the Koroit Sentinel and Tower Hill Advocate on January 22nd, 1916.

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The whole thing is crazy! Can you imagine finding three messages in bottles washed Continue reading


Mystery Message in a Bottle: Ray from Philly has been found!!!


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Can you tell I’m excited?

RAY FROM PHILLY HAS BEEN FOUND! And guess what? He’s awesome.

Y’all, when I found this message in a bottle, I confess, I thought it was a hopeless case. The bottle was falling apart, and the writing was so faded I couldn’t see anything. I was bummed.

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The Coastal Postal Service of Scotland’s St. Kilda


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What if I told you that an entire community once used messages in bottles as their actual postal system?

Meet the Islands of St. Kilda.

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Message in a Bottle Reunited Woman With Father 85 Years After His Death


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Imagine you lost your parents years ago. Imagine that today–decades after they passed–a stranger delivers to you a final letter from them. You thought you would never hear from them again. But here they are, one last time.

Emily Crowhurst never imagined she would receive such a letter. Through love, war, loss, and a dash of genealogical good fortune, that all changed one day in 1999.


Private Thomas Hughes, a soldier since 1905, was a member of the Durham Light Infantry in England. He was among the first soldiers called to the war in 1914. states that Private Hughes and his brothers-in-arms “landed at St Nazaire and made their way to the River Aisne, north of Rheims, where Germans were dug in. [Hughes] and 40 comrades died on September 21 [1914]. His body was never recovered and he is commemorated with 4,000 British ‘unknown soldiers’ at the La Ferte-Sous-Jouarre memorial.”

Colour Party of the 9th Battalion Durham Light Infantry, June 19th, 1909 (Wikipedia)

Colour Party of the 9th Battalion Durham Light Infantry, 1909. Photo from Wikipedia. Unknown source.

In other words, when Hughes died, Continue reading

Message in a Bottle Archives: British War Ships to Hunt Castaways Down Under?


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In its early days, Australia had two main newspapers. One was The Argus.

On Friday, July 9th, 1909, The Argus told of a message in a bottle found in Singapore. It was signed by two men, Palmerston and Flenn, who asked the finder to send help, as they were “lost in one of the New Guinea islands”.


The brief message simply read: Continue reading

Fearless Explorers: Cremated Sailors of the Seven Seas


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Life is such an amazing adventure that most folks don’t want it to end. And when it inevitably does, some send their loved ones on a final journey. In recent years, a number of beachcombers have stumbled upon human ashes in bottles. In every case, the person whose ashes are in the bottle was deeply loved by their family, and the family chose this gesture as a way of honoring the person’s love of travel or desire to see the world.

Personally, my favorite version of this memorial is the kind that implores the finder to share a drink with the “person” whose ashes are in the bottle.

If you find human remains in a bottle tomorrow, I guarantee a stiff drink is going to make you feel less nervous. Continue reading

Message in a Bottle / Flaschenpost Found! Seeking Jens & Silke, Jirko, Ines & Rudiger, and R. & Lo. Lenz


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Y’all have helped me solve some incredible mysteries. Like the 46 year old note from “Donkeyman” Jimmy Robertson, and the 7 year old message in a bottle from Sabine of Dusseldorf, Germany. Couldn’t have solved those without your help!

I need your help again! We’re gonna solve a “cold case” this time–a message in a bottle found by Stefanie Padilla on Hermosa Beach, CA,  in 2013. In fact, she found EIGHT messages inside one bottle, all from German-speaking folks.

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In fact, Stefanie discovered the bottled notes as they floated to shore! Can you believe it? Here’s the bottle, on it’s way in: Continue reading

What a Message in a Bottle Taught Me About Women’s Fight for the Right to Fight


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One of the most remarkable messages in a bottle I’ve ever heard of comes from the archives of the The Warnambool Standard in March 1916.

It was written by Private R. Lock of the Australian military, who wrote in the message of a “girl” who had recently been discovered aboard his ship. She had been “masquerading” as a man in order to fight for her country.

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Her reward? She was Continue reading

Message in a Bottle Found: Wedding Vows to Danielle Wash Ashore in Cancun


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A while back, a reader wrote to me of a lovely message in a bottle he and his wife had found while they were on vacation at Excellence Riviera Cancun north of Puerto Morelos, Mexico, in November of 2014. And now, finally, we are trying to find the person who sent that message in a bottle–but we need your help!

Here’s where the bottle was found:


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Message in a Bottle Found: “Bless Lisa / You Are My Hero” Help find the Sender!


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On the morning of July 26th, 2016, Kristin Morin was out for a walk on Cape Neddick beach in York, Maine, with two of her four children. The out-of-the-way beach was quiet, and the tide was low. Perfect beachcombing conditions.

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“There’s an exposed sand bar,” Kristin wrote in her message to Continue reading