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Observations placeholder

Fort, Charles - The Book of the Damned - Falls of 'Fabric'



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

The Book of the Damned - Charles Fort

Annual Register, 1821-681:
That, according to a report by M. Lainé, French Consul at Pernambuco, early in October, 1821, there was a shower of a substance resembling silk. The quantity was … tremendous.

In the Annals of Philosophy, n.s., 12-93
there is mention of a fibrous substance like blue silk that fell near Naumberg, March 23,  1665. According to Chladni (Annales de Chimie, 2-31-264), the quantity was great. He places a question mark before the date.

The Scientific American, 1859-178.
….a correspondent saw a silky substance fall from the sky--there was an aurora borealis at the time--he attributes the substance to the aurora.

In All the Year Round, 8-254
is described a fall that took place in England, Sept. 21, 1741, in the towns of Bradly, Selborne, and Alresford, and in a triangular space included by these three towns. The substance is described as "cobwebs"--but it fell in flake-formation, or in "flakes or rags about one inch broad and five or six inches long."  Also these flakes were of a relatively heavy substance--"they fell with some velocity." The quantity was great--the shortest side of the triangular space is eight miles long.

In the Wernerian Nat. Hist. Soc. Trans., 5-386,
…. it is said that there were two falls--that they were some hours apart--….. It is said that the second fall lasted from nine o'clock in the morning until night.  Then it's that other familiar matter of incredible "marksmanship" again--hitting a small, triangular space for hours--interval of hours--then from nine in the morning until night: same small triangular space.

Scientific American, 45-337:
Fall of a substance described as "cobwebs," latter part of October, 1881, in Milwaukee, Wis., and other towns: other towns mentioned are Green Bay, Vesburge, Fort Howard, Sheboygan, and Ozaukee. The aeronautic spiders are known as "gossamer" spiders, because of the extreme lightness of the filaments that they cast out to the wind. Of the substance that fell in Wisconsin, it is said:
"In all instances the webs were strong in texture and very white."
The Editor says:
"Curiously enough, there is no mention in any of the reports that we have seen, of the presence of spiders."

The Monthly Weather Review, 26-566, quotes the Montgomery (Ala.) Advertiser:
That, upon Nov. 21, 1898, numerous batches of spider-web-like substance fell in Montgomery, in strands and in occasional masses several inches long and several inches broad. According to the writer, it was not spiders' web, but something like asbestos; also that it was phosphorescent.

La Nature, 1883-342:
A correspondent writes that he sends a sample of a substance said to have fallen at Montussan (Gironde), Oct. 16, 1883. According to a witness, quoted by the correspondent, a thick cloud, accompanied by rain and a violent wind, had appeared. This cloud was composed of a woolly substance in lumps the size of a fist, which fell to the ground. The Editor (Tissandier) says of this substance that it was white, but was something that had been burned. It was fibrous. M. Tissandier astonishes us by saying that he cannot identify this substance. We thought that anything could be "identified" as anything. He can say only that the cloud in question must have been an extraordinary conglomeration.

Annual Register, 1832-447:
That, March, 1832, there fell, in the fields of Kourianof, Russia, a combustible yellowish substance, covering, at least two inches thick, an area of 600 or 700 square feet. It was resinous and yellowish: …--but, when torn, it had the tenacity of cotton. When placed in water, it had the consistency of resin. "This resin had the color of amber, was elastic, like India rubber, and smelled like prepared oil mixed with wax."

The source of the experience

Fort, Charles

Concepts, symbols and science items


Activities and commonsteps