Saturday, 20 January 2018

Random Fortean Stuff

I laboured long and hard over this introduction. But I have flu and I’m eager to get back to feeling sorry for myself. So, here’s some random Fortean stuff:


On 1 September 1854, Hugh McCartney was working in a field near the townland of Duntybrian, in County Derry, when he saw an object fluttering out of the sky. He thought it was a white butterfly and watched its progress until it landed. “To his astonishment it proved to be a white stone, one ounce in weight, and the exact shape of a boy’s kite.”
According to the report in the Limerick and Clare Examiner, the stone looked like flint but may have been calcined gypsum, and the markings on the “kite” were “like what might be done with a chisel, or by the long continuous action of water.”
Limerick and Clare Examiner, 6 September 1854


In August 1883, while demolishing a house on Bishop Street in Derry, workers found a hand hidden between the ceiling and the roof. Though the hand had been “torn from the wrist,” it  “was in an excellent state of preservation” and was “evidently that of a female of good position.” According to The Belfast Weekly News, the nails on the hand were “three-eighths of an inch longer than an ordinary finger nail.”
And on Tuesday, 8 May 1906, a policeman found a woman’s hand in Belfast’s Ormeau Park. According to The Dublin Daily Express, “Enquiries are proceeding into the matter, but there is no explanation forthcoming as yet.”
The Belfast Weekly News, 18 August 1883
The Dublin Daily Express, 9 May 1906


On the evening of Wednesday, 31 October 1906, Eliza Gillespie (12) and Willie Thompson (10) claim that, while playing “in the vicinity of East Twin Island,” they saw a policeman kill himself. They said he took of his tunic and wrapped it around a large stone, hung it from his neck with a piece of cord and walked into the water, where he disappeared. 
The area was searched immediately but no body was found; and enquiries at police stations failed to find anyone unaccounted for. 
The Irish Independent, 3 November 1906


In the current issue of Phenomena Magazine (available free at, Cormac Strain reports on the Legend Seekers' investigation of an alleged UFO crash in the Curlew Mountains, near the County Roscommon village of Boyle, in May 1996. 

The article, The Star That Fell, is well worth a look. And if you’re interested in reading more, try Conspiracy of Silence: UFOs in Ireland, by Dermot Butler and Carl Nally, or Paranormal Ireland by Dara de Faoite. Both books have chapters on the Boyle incident.
Phenomena Magazine, December 2017 (Issue 104)

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