Perth resident Tonya Illman and the group found the bottle half buried in the sand while collecting rubbish. When they shook the bottle a rolled-up paper that looked like a cigarette fell out. On returning to their from the beach, they opened the note after warming it for a short time in an oven.
The note written in German asked the finder to send details of where and when the bottle was found. It was written on June 12, 1886, nearly 132 years ago.
Oldest message in a bottle found on Australian beach: An Australian woman has found the world's oldest known message in a bottle nearly 132 years after it was thrown into the sea. https://t.co/fFugHWy1Wh pic.twitter.com/LOU15ZQYY7
— Matt White (@matt_white79) March 7, 2018
Further research revealed that it was a Dutch gin bottle thrown from the German sailing barque Paula nearly 950km from the West Australian coast.
Germany's Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency and National Meteorological Service have now verified the piece as an authentic. The unique bottle will now be put on a display t the WA Maritime Museum in Fremantle.
Oldest message in a bottle has been found in Perth Australia 132 years after it was thrown into the ocean by German research vessel beating previous guineas world record of 108 years. https://t.co/hjsHjfNuFp pic.twitter.com/e7sM50TugB
— NewForestArchaeology (@NewForestArch) March 6, 2018
— Karina Hyett (@KarinaHyett) March 6, 2018