A boat captain in Michigan discovered a message in a bottle from 1926 at the bottom of a river and later was able to speak with the daughter of its creator.
Jennifer Dowker, owner of glass-bottom boat tour company Nautical North Family Adventures, said she was scuba diving on the Cheboygan River on June 18 to clean the windows on the bottom of her boat.
Dowker said she often looks at the floor of the river while diving to see if there are any items that might be of interest to her customers.
“I just collect little bottles that I find on the ground of the river when I am diving pretty often, actually,” Dowker told USA Today.
Dowker spotted a tiny green bottle June 18 dive and soon realized there was a piece of paper inside.
The note was dated November 1926 and read: “Will the person who finds this bottle return this paper to George Morrow Cheboygan, Michigan and tell where it was found?”
Dowker posted photos of her discovery to her company’s Facebook page and the post quickly went viral.
“I woke up the next morning and I had a lot of messages from tons of different people saying ‘Oh, this could be you know so or so,” Dowker said. “Honestly, my first thought was how I was going to find the time to do this, because I am a single mom, with three boys, running a business.”
Dowker said she didn’t have to conduct much of a search, as she received a phone call on Father’s Day from Michele Primeau, 74, who said she had been contacted by someone who saw the Facebook post and did research at ancestry.com.
“She emailed me pictures of the letter and as soon as I saw it, I knew it was my father’s handwriting, and it was found in Cheboygan. He was born in Cheboygan and lived there until his 20s,” Primeau said.
“It was also interesting because he threw the letter in the river in November, and his birthday is in November.”
Premeau said her father, who died in 1995, was known for leaving written messages in unexpected places.
“I remember when we were changing the medicine cabinet in our bathroom and we found a message that my dad had written on the wall,” she said.