According to this post by Laura Geggel, Senior Writer for LIVESCIENCE “the oldest message in a bottle on record wasn’t discovered by a historian, but by a woman picking up trash strewn across the coastal dunes of Western Australia.”

Thinking that it would look great on her bookshelf at home “Perth resident Tonya Illman scooped up the brownish bottle just north of Wedge Island on Jan. 21. At that point, the bottle had been out of human hands for 131 years and 223 days: According to Illman’s husband’s website, which describes the finding, it was thrown overboard from a German vessel on June 12, 1886…”

(Thanks, as always, to John Riley of Gabriel Books for providing ATG Quirkies)