Message in a Bottle

This is really not a suitable topic for a post, but I enjoyed reading this story and thought others might, too.

A gentleman named Darin Winkler was out on a walk with his two sons a few days ago when he found a very unusual object.

Spring and high water brings up various kinds of things on shore,” said Winkler. . “We saw an old flattened basketball and a bunch of bottles. Mostly they were whiskey bottles. But this one stood out.”

It was a bottle, with an old-fashioned cork-stopper. Darin Winkler went to have a closer look. And that’s when they saw there was a message in the bottle.

Taking it out, they saw that it was a letter. Some parts of the paper had deteriorated but most of it could be read.

March 30, 1913

Dear friend,

Who ever finds this bottle, please write in … at Rockford, within the next two years … and let me know it… Will put it in …Spokane … North East … state of Wa …

Yours truly,

Emmett Presnell

Darin later found out that Emmett Presnell died at age 85, on May 13, 1978, in a local nursing home. Emmet Presnell would have been around twenty years old when he put the letter in the bottle.

Had he thought that someone would find it and answer it?

Perhaps he had thought the bottle he had sent out into the river would come ashore in some far-off land and he would receive an answer from there.

Those were the days when people wrote letters, not e-mails, and it would take some days for a letter to be delivered.

Had he wondered why he never received an answer, perhaps waiting for the postman every day, only to be disappointed?

In the movie, The Lake House, the main characters, Kate and Alex, communicate with each other by putting letters in the mailbox, though they are separated by two years in time.

If such an option were possible, Darin Winkler could put an answering letter into the same bottle and send it off in the water, hoping that it would reach Emmett Presnell in the past!



  1. Theres no apt or prefect topic for a blog as such, just share what you like coz I liked this one a lot:)I have imagined this scenario so many times…and one major reason why I loved that movie’s storyline:)))I am a letter maniac :Dso can write tomes 🙂


  2. Bones- Yes, letters were much more appealing than e-mails are. Indyeah- I can well believe that you write very long letters! :)The picture is an island at Nagarjun Sagar Dam in Andhra Pradesh.


  3. I miss those long letter days too…the pace was languid and time gap between sending and receiving letters had its own charm. These days, messages arrive almost before you hit “enter” and you are pressured to reply instantly… that magic is not there any longer. It is now almost as good as talking together.


  4. I actually grieve for the lost art of letter writing. Phones and e mails cannot replace the joy of receiving letters. Electronic rakhis et al….:( 😦


  5. Manju, This was a very sweet post.. Here we are , all of us feeling sad about the bygone days when we used to wait for the postman 🙂 And my daughter’s generation probably will grow up thinking that the postman brings only official stuff – all the personal mails come by ‘e-mail’ 😦 Yes, the magic is certainly lost..


  6. Manju, I alway mean to tell you – but forget – that I love the ‘discovering India’ pics that you put up! I always check that out first on your blog – before even reading your post – to see if you’ve changed it:)


  7. I’m inspired by the sense of hope and adventure the 20 year old man had, sending his message down the Spokane River. I’m curious how long he held out hope that someone would find his message. The author in the article doubts that Emmet Presnell recalls ever releasing that bottle. I like to imagine that he did occasionally wonder, for the rest of his life, if his bottle would be found.


  8. Vinodji- A family friend of ours makes a point of sending friends and relatives, letters on birthdays and special occasions. These are much appreciated by everyone!Chrysalis- Definitely, receiving letters brought a different kind of joy. And they could be read and reread at leisure!


  9. Smitha- Yes, the postman used to be an important person! My husband tells me that in the school he attended, even the exam results were sent home by post.Weeble- My thoughts exactly! I am sure he must have wondered why no one had answered his message.


  10. yes manju — all my school results came by post ! the letters which i have written are kept by my mother — so she says — now i write letters and keep them with me — — one writes a lot more in letters – encouragement – appreciation — i feel safe in writing emails — to the point and short – will get deleted one day and not put you to task of what one was written – because a letter can be kept — legally emails are not documented evidences — that’s my story…I am glad you bought the discovery series back to your blog — most of your viewers seem to be enjoying it. in fact i have decided to leisurely visit konkan ( if possible ) whenever i come for a visit –only because of your pictures.


  11. Messaages in bottles are so romantic arent they ? and in the modern day world, straight messages, delivered face to face…are missed ! 🙂


  12. Nice Post !I like the habit of leaving some memories to destiny. Writing names on stones, and kinda preserving them or hiding them at unusual places with the hope that i could see if i ever visited this place again. It is a type of connection, gives a very good feeling.


  13. Anrosh- Yes, some letters are filled with encouragement and appreciation. And memories come alive again when we read them!You should definitely visit the Konkan area. Many beaches are still clean and unspoiled.Kavi- They certainly are romantic! That’s why this story is appealing.:)R.K.- Yes, it feels good to do such things, as if- as you say- we have a connection with that particular place!


  14. Letter in a bottle – perhaps an age old practice now forgotten. As many have talked about the letter writing experience, I will not repeat it – but like to add another experience that has now disappeared – penfriends!


  15. I miss letters too. I had a post on it. I also don’t support today’s generation typing in MS word because that way they don’t learn their spelling well. I still wish if teachers let students write assignments on paper instead of MS word like in US. Well! mine is just 5 but I will keep in mind to get her good writing skills which is almost extinct.BTW I had once send a message in a bottle with my address. I don’t know if it reached anyone. Even the address is of a place where we don’t belong any more.


  16. Gopinathji- Yes, writing to penfriends was an enjoyable experience for many people.Sahaja- You are right, blogger friends may be considered pen friends, we use the internet instead of pen and paper.Solilo- Maybe someone will will find your message in a bottle, search out your new address, and send you an answer!:)


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