Pat Shingleton: "12-9 and Strange Occurances"
On this date in 1847, residents of Forest Hill, Arkansas, recovered from an explosion that rocked the community. The episode was described as "a solid black fleece...above a red glare as of many torches." As noted in a previous column, houses rattled, and the local church bell rang as a fiery barrel-sized object caused a two-by-eight foot crater. It was also reported that it smelled of sulfur and once doused with water, it boiled. Similar events include a thunderstorm in Westmoreland, England in 1885 when a 12 pound, spinning rock bombarded and killed a herd of sheep. In 1867,on the Isle of Sark, following a lightning strike,.residents described a "green-hued mineral axe" laying beneath a dead cow.