135-Year-Old Message in a Bottle Found in Scotland Could be Oldest Ever
by Ashley Dreiling
The owner of a plumbing company found a 135-year-old message in a bottle under the floorboards in a house in the Morningside area of Edinburgh, Scotland while on the job. The whiskey bottle could be the oldest ever discovered, and perhaps the funniest.
According to BBC Scotland, the plumber, Peter Allan, rushed to tell the homeowner, Eilidh Stimpson about his find. Stimpson decided to wait until her two kids returned home from school before investigating the mystery further.
“We were desperately trying to get the note out with tweezers and pliers, but it started to rip a little bit. We didn’t want to damage it further, so regrettably had to smash the bottle,” Stimpson told Edinburgh Live.
After unraveling the delicate sheet of paper, they were able to make out scrawled handwriting which read: “James Ritchie and John Grieve laid this floor, but they did not drink the whisky. October 6th 1887. Whoever finds this bottle may think our dust is blowing along the road.”
Allan believes the bottle was hidden under the floor of what would have been a maid’s room given the date of the note. Nothing else is known about the note’s authors.
Once this finding in Scotland is authenticated and dated correctly, it may be the oldest of its kind ever found. Its only competitor is a 132-year-old German message in a genuine 19th-century Dutch gin bottle found along the beach in West Australia in 2018. If the Scotland find isn’t the oldest, it’s certainly one of the silliest messages in a bottle ever found.