The Bell-Shaped Vessel of Dorchester
During blasting work at Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1851, the broken halves of a bell-shaped vessel were thrown by the force of an explosion from the vessel's resting place in solid rock. The vase, about 4 1/2" high, is made of an unknown metal and embellished with floral inlays of silver - the "art of some cunning workman," according to the local newspaper report.
The editor of Scientific American gave as his opinion that the vase had been made by none other than Tubal-cain, the biblical father of metallurgy. In response, Charles Fort - a lifelong connoisseur of anomalies and a dedicated opponent of scientific dogma - said "Though I fear that this is a little arbitrary, I am not disposed to fly rabidly at every scientific opinion."
(Scientific American, 7:298, June 5, 1852)
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