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Observations placeholder

Fort, Charles - New Lands - Falls of Black powder [accompanies by noises and earthquakes]



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

New Lands

The falls themselves

1788 - In his report to the British Association, 1840, David Milne , reviewing the phenomena from the year 1788, says: "Occasionally there was a fall of fine, black powder."

1837 - Upon Feb. 15, 1837, a black powder fell upon the Comrie region (Edin. New Phil. Jour., 31-293).

1839 - Upon Oct. 23, 1839, something had occurred in the sky, because sounds seemed to come from the sky. Milne says that clothes, bleaching on the grass, were entirely covered with black particles………….. In November, according to Milne, a powder like soot fell from the sky, upon Comrie and surrounding regions.

1841 - Feb. 18, 1841 a shock and a fall of discolored rain at Comrie (Edin. New Phil. Jour., 35-148).

1855 - Amer. Jour. Sci., 2-28-275, Prof. Shepard tells a circumstantial story of an object that looked like a lump of slag, or cinders, reported to have fallen at Crieff. ….. Prof. Shepard went to Crieff and investigated. He gives his opinion that possibly the object did fall from the sky. The story that he tells is that, upon the night of April 23, 1855, a young woman, in the home of Sir William Murray, Achterlyre House, Crieff, saw, or thought she saw, a luminous object falling, and picked it up, dropping it, because it was hot.  For a description, in a letter, presumably from Sir William Murray, or some member of his family, see Year Book of Facts, 1856-273.   It is said that about 12 fragments of scorious matter, hot and emitting a sulphurous odor, had fallen.

Accompanying events at Comrie

1839 October - Oct. 12, 1839—a quake at Comrie. According to the Rev. M. Walker, of Comrie, the sky, at the time, was "peculiarly strange and alarming, and appeared as if hung with sackcloth."

In Mallet's Catalogue (Rept. B. A., 1854-290) it is said that, throughout the month of October, shocks were felt at Comrie, sometimes slight and sometimes severe—"like distant thunder or reports of artillery"—"the noise sometimes seemed to be high in the air, and was often heard without any sensible shock."

Upon the 23rd of October, occurred the most violent quake in the whole series of phenomena at Comrie. See the Edin. New Phil. Jour., vol. 32. All data in this publication were collected by David Milne. According to the Rev. M. Maxton, of Foulis Manse, ten miles from Comrie, rattling sounds were heard in the sky, preceding the shock that was felt. In vol. 33, p. 373, of the Journal, someone who lived seven miles from Comrie is quoted: "In every case, I am inclined to say that the sound proceeded not from underground. The sound seemed high in the air."

Someone who lived at Gowrie, forty miles from Comrie, is quoted: "The most general opinion seems to be that the noise accompanying the concussion proceeded from above." See vol. 34, p. 87: another impression of explosion overhead and concussion underneath: "The noises heard first seemed to be in the air, and the rumbling sound in the earth." Milne's own conclusion—"It is plain that there are, connected with the earthquake shocks, sounds both in the earth and in the air, which are distinct and separate."

1840  - Jan. 8, 1840—sounds like cannonading, at Comrie, and a crackling sound in the air, according to some of the residents. Whether they were sounds of quakes or concussions that followed explosions, 247 occurrences, between Oct. 3, 1839, and Feb. 14, 1841, are listed in the Edin. New Phil. Jour., 32-107.

See Roper's List of Earthquakes—year after year, and the continuance of this seeming bombardment in one small part of the sky of this earth, though I can find records only of dates and no details.

1886 – 1894 - The latest date in Roper's List of Earthquakes is April 8, 1886, but this list goes on only a few years later. See Knowledge, n. s., 6-145—shock and a rumbling sound at Comrie, July 12, 1894—a repetition upon the corresponding date, the next year.

1901 - In the English Mechanic, 74-155, David Packer says that, upon Sept. 17, 1901, ribbon-like flashes of lightning, which were not ordinary lightning, were seen in the sky (I think of Birmingham) one hour before a shock in Scotland. According to other accounts, this shock was in Comrie and surrounding regions (London Times, Sept. 19, 1901).


The source of the experience

Fort, Charles

Concepts, symbols and science items




Science Items

Activities and commonsteps