Odd Rocks

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#1
[edit: Changed over to make it a general thread about unusual rocks, etc.]

Strange 'Polo' rock from Texas

Mystery Rock

Local man's odd find has experts perplexed

By Brye Butler / Reporter-News Staff Writer
June 19, 2004

Kevin Oliver said he's sure he doesn't have rocks in his head.

He does, however, have a big one in his living room. It's brown, weighs some 40 pounds and is hollow in a few places. Oliver said he thinks it's worth big bucks.

''This is no ordinary rock,'' he said.

At a glance, local geology buffs haven't been able to identify the rock Oliver came across while clearing underbrush on property in north Abilene.

''It's about to drive me crazy,'' Oliver said. ''I want to find out what it is.''

Months ago, ''I picked this thing on up and I thought, 'What the ... ''' Oliver said.

Because the rock looked so odd, Oliver said, he took it home and hosed it off. It's smooth but not perfectly round and about a foot and a half in diameter.

Oliver said he took it to the geology departments at Hardin-Simmons University and McMurry University.

Professor Richard Schofield said that in his 22 years with McMurry's geology department, he's never seen anything like it.

In looking at the rock, he couldn't determine its composition, age or origin. Its partial hollowness could be from weathering, Schofield said.

As for its value, Schofield said, ''It could be nothing, but I can't say with any certainty.''

He suggested Oliver send the rock to Texas A&M University, where staff could cut a sample to study.

Charles Lightfoot, a longtime member of the Central Texas Gem and Mineral Society, said the most common rocks in the Abilene area are fossils and agate, a striped gemstone.

''It's hard to say what he found,'' Lightfoot said without having seen Oliver's rock.

A diamond in the rough, Oliver likes to think.
http://www.reporter-news.com/abil/nw_local/article/0,1874,ABIL_7959_2975458,00.html

I do doubt the most common rocks are fossils and agate or I'm visiting ;)

Emps
 

James_H

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#2
It could be like a megalith - carved that way by people
 
A

Anonymous

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#3
What sort of geologists do they have out there: "can't identify it": is it a limestone, sandstone, metamorphic, volcanic? Come on guys!

And as for "commonest rocks are fossils and agates......." :rofl:

Does look like it may have been delibrately carved. Beyond that, impossible to say with a closer examination.
 

PeniG

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#4
Okay, what we have here is a case of really bad reportage. This is in my old neck of the woods, and it's confusing me.

First of all, Abilene is in oil country, so you may be sure that the geology is well-understood - at least insofar as understanding geology is necessary to finding and exploiting oil. Somebody in Abilene is capable of looking at this rock and saying: "Well, it's metamorphic" or whatever. I can't tell whether no one has bothered, or whether the reporter hasn't asked the right questions, or whether, having been informed, the reporter didn't absorb the information. The Universities in question are glorified colleges, heavy on imparting practical information and light on research and curiousity, so it's possible that no one truly knowledgeable could be bothered with looking at the thing; especially if the guy comes off as a nut job or approaches the geology department saying "Hey, how much is my cool rock worth?"

Possibly what is meant by "most common rocks in the Abilene area are fossils and agate" is "Most common rocks that attract attention." Fossils are indeed plentiful - the Edwards Plateau is an old sea bed, primarily limestone - and West Texas has some famous outcrops of agate, notably the Alibates "flint," which originates in the Texas Panhandle and has been found, in worked form, as far away as the Rocky Mountains. No one in West Texas would pay any attention to limestone, sandstone, or granite, at least not in their normal forms, so I think we can wash those out.

Without a picture, I would not venture a guess as to whether the odd shape of the rock is natural or human-mediated; however, rocks with smooth holes in them are common. It's a combination of chemical and physical processes. The mineral content of water on the Plateau is very high, and normal weathering includes combining of chemicals - as well as extreme weather such as flash floods in the middle of seven-year droughts.

I'm afraid great journalists don't wind up on staff at the Abilene Reporter-News.
 
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#5
I'm a trained geologist and when people find out they are always pushing rocks at you for a diagnosis and I'm always wary of saying anything definitive as it is usually a crappy, undiagnostic lump and I've often been proved wrong. If it was the press asking then I would keep schtum until more extensive tests had been performed (too many people have been fooled by some lump of weathered concrete).

I think my favourite "whats my rock?" was from a friend who does aromtherapy and massge who uses various crystals and stuff and she had a rock she used and I had to tell her it was just a lump of bright orange 'paste' with gold glitter in it but that was quite an easy one ;)

Emps
 
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#6
Another very unusual stone:

Enigma of rock puzzles woman

By D. PAUL HARRIS
Of the Post-Dispatch
06/21/2004


Enigma of rock has woman puzzled


She says stone she found in her yard grows, but scientists are skeptical.


Mildred Price of Jennings loves to collect art and odd or unusual items. She also loves flowers and the look of a well-manicured lawn. She spends a lot of time keeping her yard in great shape.

So on a warm day in July 1982, Price was working in the yard of her boarding house in midtown St. Louis and happened to rake over an unusual rock. She said it was brownish-black, semi-oblong and smooth. It fit in the palm of her hand. She picked it up. It was solid and weighty.

As she stood admiring the rock, a man who worked for her noticed her looking at the rock and walked over to take a look. He told her that she needed to keep it because it was a special rock: a rock that grows.

Price, 74, now retired after working as a private-duty nurse, thought that sounded strange. Nevertheless, being a collector of unusual items, she put the rock in her yard and close to the fence. And that's where it stayed for about five years.

She says that in those years, she would check on the rock from time to time, and to her amazement, it would appear to be getting bigger.

Price, a mother of four and grandmother, shared with her family and close friends the tale of the growing rock. She was reluctant to talk about it to anyone else.

"I didn't want to tell anyone else, because I didn't want people to think I was going insane," she said. "If I told someone, they would have thought something was wrong with me."

Audrey Farrar, Price's older daughter, says her mother didn't talk to anybody about the rock because her mother probably was skeptical.

"We have all watched it grow over the years," says Farrar. "It wasn't like it was growing while you looked at it. It was like, from time to time you would see it and say, 'Well, yeah, OK.' I just wish that we had taken measurements of it before now, because everybody just thinks we are crazy."

Bill Brooks, a longtime family friend, says he has witnessed the rock's growth.

"When I first saw it, it was sitting in the corner of the yard," said Brooks. "It was a little rock, and over the years it's gotten bigger and bigger. I'm scared of that rock."

Price said fear often was the reaction when she showed the rock and then told the story behind it.

"When people see it, they are afraid of it, because I tell them it's my growing rock," she said. "They said they wouldn't even keep it in the house. They think it would do some harm to me. But I'm not afraid of it."

When she shows the rock now, it weighs about 32 pounds and has to be held with two hands. It's brownish-red on the top and dark brown on the bottom and is shaped like an extra-thick loaf of pumpernickel bread. It also resembles the shape of a human brain.

Price said she had made several attempts to find out more about the rock. One time she tried to call a television program asking viewers to call in about unusual items. But she couldn't get through. It made her decide to keep the rock inside.

About 11 years ago, she asked her grandson to find out whether one of his instructors at Meramec Community College could tell her anything about the rock.

She talked to an instructor, but only briefly because he was leaving town.

"He told me that there is such a thing as a growing rock, but it's very, very rare," said Price. "But when he told me he was about to leave, I just said all right. I thanked him for talking to me and hung up the phone. I didn't even think to ask his name or phone number or give him my phone number or tell him to call me when he returned or anything."

Price said she felt better after talking to the instructor because no one, except her yard man, had ever verified knowing anything about a growing rock.

Price remembers the instructor distinctly because, she says, he had an Asian accent. Her grandson told her he was Vietnamese. Attempts to find the instructor were unsuccessful. No one at the college had heard of him.

About nine years ago, Price and a friend took the rock to the St. Louis Science Center. She said the president of the center had taken her to his office and called in a staff geologist to examine the rock.

"He told him to test the rock to see if there was any radiation or a heartbeat," she said. "He did and found out that there was no radiation or heartbeat. I told him what size it was when I found it. And he said that somebody was probably changing the rocks on me or either it floated down the river and got that large. It hurt me so bad inside, I just started losing interest."

No one at the Science Center could recall the incident.

Her sister in-law encouraged her to take the rock to Washington University. A professor examined it and told Price that it was very unusual, probably 20,000 years old, and that there probably wasn't another rock like it in Missouri.

"I told him that it had grown that size; it wasn't that size when I found it. But he didn't pay me no mind. So I didn't say anything more," she said.

Recently, the rock was examined by Robert F. Dymek, a professor of geology in the Washington University Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.

"I don't believe that this rock could ever have grown," he concluded. "Perhaps somebody may have made a switch. This is a nice example of a boulder with a very smooth surface that could have been polished by the action of streams, water flowing over it, which would smooth it out.

"Or it could have been polished by having been transported in a glacier during the Ice Age. I think that's probably the most reasonable interpretation. The reason I say that is because of the material that it's made of. It looks to be like granite, very hard.

"A rock is, by definition, inorganic substance, so it doesn't grow. There are certain minerals - clay minerals, in particular - which if you make them wet will swell as the clays will absorb water."

He said most such rocks found in the St. Louis area would be derived from the bedrock, which is mainly limestone. He said Price's rock had traveled far.

"This particular boulder has been in the ground for many, many years," he added. "I wouldn't be surprised if we could say hundreds of thousands of years. I think if you gave it a billion years, it would not grow. I think a switch was pulled. This is granite, and granite doesn't grow. Rocks don't grow."

Dymek said the only way to find out more about the rock would be to saw it open. But Price doesn't want it destroyed.

Price maintains that the rock is the same one she picked up with one hand 22 years ago. Now in failing health, one of her greatest desires is to know the mystery of how the rock seems to grow.

"I know it's strange, but it's very special to me," she said. "It's just my pet rock. I rub it and say 'I don't know what you are, but God gave you to me for a reason.' I believe one day I will find out."
link

Great story but the earlier visits to various experts sound slike BS - why would they test a rock for a heartbeat?? And oddly the most clued up experts on the growing business all disappeared and wre untraceable!! Fantastictic tale though :)

Emps
 
A

Anonymous

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#7
Friends of mine in Forest Hill south london claimed to have a meteorite.

One night at a bbq at their place they dug it out, it has been sitting in the garden since they moved there many years before.

I was very impressed, it was about the size of a football, very heavy, blackened with obvious signs of melting on the surface, I pulled a small piece off which they said I could keep.

My lil bro was going to the natural history museum and he took the piece with him and submitted it to them for examination.

They mailed us the results, it was a piece of slag :(

Still strange how it ended up in their garden and very very cool that the museum actually will test samples for you.
 

rjmrjmrjm

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#8
Slag, I imagine is quite common to find generally. If the house is fairly modern its likely that the land its on has been landscaped and dips filled in with anything, even non-hazardous industrial waste (slag).

Just one idea...
 

Kondoru

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#9
Yes, as an amateur geologist I am quite familiar with rocks that grow.....

And unidentified rocks......

And experts who wouldnt know a rock if it fell on their head....

In both cases I fear it is a matter of `small rag with a space to fill`
 

TulipTree

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#10
Homo Aves said:
Yes, as an amateur geologist I am quite familiar with rocks that grow.....
Are you kidding about the "rocks that grow" part? When I read that article, I thought for sure it was a practical joke.
 
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#12
No rodinary rock?

Emperor said:
Mystery Rock

Local man's odd find has experts perplexed

By Brye Butler / Reporter-News Staff Writer
June 19, 2004

Kevin Oliver said he's sure he doesn't have rocks in his head.

He does, however, have a big one in his living room. It's brown, weighs some 40 pounds and is hollow in a few places. Oliver said he thinks it's worth big bucks.

''This is no ordinary rock,'' he said.

........


http://www.reporter-news.com/abil/nw_local/article/0,1874,ABIL_7959_2975458,00.html
Or is it:

Local mystery rock is sandstone, professor says

By Brye Butler / Reporter-News Staff Writer
June 25, 2004


The mystery may be solved.

The odd rock Kevin Oliver found a few months ago while clearing property in north Abilene is probably a piece of oddly weathered sandstone. Oliver and others have been baffled by the 42-pound, 11/2 -foot-across rock that is rounded but full of holes, including one that goes all the way through.

The rock probably has little monetary value, said Mark Ouimette, a Hardin-Simmons University professor of 10 years and head of the geology department.

After a few tests Thursday that included scratching it on glass, dripping acid to make it bubble and scraping it with a small pick, Ouimette said, ''I'm confident it's sandstone.''

The rock has been tough to classify because extensive and unusual weathering has somewhat masked its properties, he said.

The strange holes and the hollow tunnel of sorts were probably caused by tree roots, which contain acid and can burrow through over many years, Ouimette said.

Oliver is skeptical.

''This is just strange, man,'' Oliver said. ''...This root theory is kind of hard'' to believe.

He further questioned some of the rock's characteristics.

''Why is it so heavy?'' Oliver asked.

Ouimette said, ''Because it's a rock.''


''... It's mind-boggling,'' Oliver said of Ouimette's explanation identifying it as sandstone. ''I'm not convinced.''

Oliver doubts it's sandstone, but isn't sure what else it might be. He said one possibility is a meteorite, but Ouimette said no way.

Oliver said he'll keep asking around and will probably send it off to Texas A&M, where a sample can be cut for further study. He likes to think it's worth something.

Ouimette, however, is pretty sure of the rock's worth.

''It's in the eye of the beholder,'' the professor said. ''It's worth millions to Mr. Oliver.''

----------------------
What is this rock?

Here's a selection of readers' guesses:

Old Chinese boat anchor

Native American artifact used for grinding food

Giant petrified Cheerio

Very hard bagel with no cream cheese
http://www.reporter-news.com/abil/nw_local/article/0,1874,ABIL_7959_2989481,00.html

Emps
 
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#14
Ringing Rocks of Pennsylvania

July 27, 2004

In Upper Black Eddy, Pennsylvania lies a field of boulders that just won't keep quiet. Known as Ringing Rocks Park, this jumble of enigmatic stones has perplexed researches for decades because of the melodious tones the rocks produce when struck with a hammer or any solid instrument.

Rocks that ring while fun and intriguing are not by themselves that anomalous. The musical qualities of certain types of stone have been recognized for thousands of years. For instance, the Egyptians used large slabs of basalt to produce a sort of giant xylophone.1 However, this particular field exhibits a number of unusual qualities that when taken together add up to a first class mystery.

.........
Rest of the long report here:

http://www.unexplainedearth.com/ringing.php
 
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#17
Rocks do grow on trees

Article Published: Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 10:24:34 AM EST


Vines grow rocks?

By Susan Bush
North Adams Transcript

NORTH ADAMS -- An actual garden of rocks discovered by a Beaver Street man will find a place in a Contemporary Artists Center art exhibit slated to open on Aug. 7.

Mass MoCA Assistant Curator Nato Thompson said he was taken by surprise on Tuesday when 54-year-old Donald Maynard of 309 Beaver St. showed up at the museum and told Thompson that vines creeping along Maynard's yard were "growing rocks."

Thompson said he was even more stunned when Maynard pulled two foliage-bearing vine strands from a plastic bag and Thompson saw that chunks of rock were indeed dangling from slender, fragile-looking vine sprouts.

"I loved it, I just loved it," Thompson said during a telephone interview on Tuesday. "It looks like a necklace and reminded me of something from 'Ripley's Believe it or Not.'"

Thompson has been working with friends on a "Detourism" art exhibit at the arts center that focuses on local discoveries. Maynard's rock-and-vine find seemed a perfect fit for the exhibit, Thompson said. The arts center is located on Beaver Street just a short distance from Maynard's home.

"I was grasping for ideas," Thompson said. "I thought that maybe Donnie could bring some of his vines [to the exhibit]. I just think it's great."

Maynard said that he was outside clearing thick foliage growth from the yard on Monday evening when he noticed the unusual greenery.

"I picked up a couple of vines and broke them off, and I was going to toss them when I felt something hard hit my leg," Maynard said. "I thought 'that felt awful hard for a vine,' and when I looked, there were all these little tendrils with rocks actually attached."

Maynard said he grew up in Clarksburg and is familiar with green and growing plants, but has never encountered this particular phenomenon.

"I didn't know what to think," he said. "I told my mother about it, and she didn't believe me, until I showed her. And seeing is believing."

Maynard visited the Transcript offices on Tuesday as well, and displayed two lengths of vine which had six to seven rocks hanging from each stem. The rocks appeared to be fastened securely to short sprigs growing from the thicker main stems; Maynard was able to handle the rocks and allowed them to hang unsupported without even one rock falling away.

There are about three longer vines still in his yard, Maynard said, and noted that there are about 30 to 40 rocks attached to those vines.

Maynard said that the vines are growing over a tree trunk that rests on a graveled area. The tree was cut last year and was left on the ground for use as a bench, he said. Maynard and Thompson speculated that the vines may be "climbing" vines, and are attaching themselves to the rocky chunks in an effort to travel upward.

"The vines only grab onto the rocks, not the tree bark," Maynard said. "I've never seen anything like this in my life. But it is pretty cool."
http://www.thetranscript.com/Stories/0,1413,103~9054~2299692,00.html
 

gyrtrash

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#18
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#19
Very nice pictures and an odd rock indeed ;)

It reminds me of Thor's Stone (Mjollnir) over the water (in Thurstaston naturally):

http://www.themodernantiquarian.com/post/16195

See also:

http://www.geocities.com/hammarens/Gallery.html

It is said there were human sacrifices on the rock 900 years ago and it is interesting from a number of geological points of view - most famously because Nye channels (created by pressurised water trapped under a glacier) run up over it and down the other side.
 
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#20
Mysterious Strange Rock Leads to Interesting Conversation

By: Sheila Holden, Staff Writer November 26, 2004


Just exactly what is the story behind the rock that Bill Young found? He would appreciate some answers to his questions.

There are tons of rocks on Young's farm in the Beech Hill community, and he was gathering a few thousand pounds of them to "tap in" fence posts. He'd park his front-end loader in an area, dig up some rocks and throw them in. If there was a difficult one to dig up, he'd used a crowbar. If the rock still didn't want to budge from its nesting place in the ground, then Young left it alone.

He was in the field about 100 feet from his home when he found a rock buried halfway in the ground. He had to use the crowbar.

On one side it looked like an ordinary gray rock made of its own combination of the eight elements that make each rock unique. He flipped the rock over and bent down and picked it up, but before he threw it into the front-end loader, Young made an unusual discovery.

"I noticed it had this cross shape on it," Young said. "Obviously I kept it out and didn't use it to build my fence."

Instead, Young took it home where it has remained a conversation piece when company visits.

"They 'ooh and ahh' over it, and we talk about how it could have happened," Young said, referring to the cross-shaped form.

Young brought the unusual find by the CITIZEN/FREE PRESS office recently.

"It looks like it was a wooden cross that has petrified or fossilized," Young said. "It doesn't look like it was carved out of the rock; it looks like it's a piece of wood that has become stone."

Young also noted on the rock what looked like a piece of string or possibly rope that had tied the cross to the rock.

Young said his father had told him that Native Americans were buried on his land, but Young said he had never seen any indication of graves such as bones, etc.

Information taken from the Internet states that rocks are continually changing. Wind and water wear them down and carry bits of rock away. The tiny particles accumulate in a lake or ocean and harden into rock again. The oldest rock that has ever been found is more than 3.9 billion years old. The Earth itself is at least 4.5 billion years old, but rocks from the beginning of Earth's history have changed so much from their original form that they have become new kinds of rock.

Young's rock measures between 6 and 8 inches long, 4 to 5 inches wide and 3 inches thick. The cross rises approximately three-quarters of an inch off the rock.

What caused the familiar yet strange formation on the rock Young found? How old is the rock? What was it used for? Young would like to know. Call him at 363-1040 with any information you may have about the rock.

---------------------
©Citizen Press 2004
Source
 
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#21
Sunday, January 30, 2005

El Pasoan still searching for mystery rocks' origin

Erica Molina
El Paso Times

Wrapped in plastic bubble sheets and kept out of harm's way, plain-looking gray rocks continue to perplex Stanton James, a Northeast man who came across them more than three years ago.

"You could see these and just walk right past them," James said.

But once the lights are out, the muffin-shaped rocks can show what makes them special. A flashlight held up to one end will make the rocks light up like small lamps. A black light reveals spots on them that glow green and then fade slowly after the light is turned off.

Although James has turned to experts for help in figuring out whether the rocks are some kind of fossilized organism, he has only been able to find out that they are are made of silica -- a commonly found mineral. He thinks that silica could have replaced the organism.

After James asked for help from the public in October 2003 in figuring out what the rocks could be, several people contacted him who were concerned for his safety.

"They thought they might be radioactive," James said.

A test with a Geiger counter showed they were safe.

He approached professors at the University of Texas at El Paso last spring to get their opinions on his specimens. They ran a test that determined the rocks were made of silica.

But James wants to know more. He suspects the rocks might have once been living, judging by their similarities in appearance. He has not yet found a scientist who agrees with that theory.

He even wrote to the Smithsonian Institution, asking for any help they could give. The response he got was an idea of what they could be made of -- silica -- but he was told experts there needed details about where the rocks came from to answer with more certainty what the specimens could be.

"Part of our problem is Mr. James doesn't know where these came from. If we knew where they came from, we could look at the area and figure things out," said William Cornell, a geology professor at UTEP. "Since we have no idea, we're kind of stuck. There's not much we can do to identify them."

James bought the rocks for $5 about about three years ago from a man in Chaparral, N.M., but James doesn't know where the man got them, nor does he know where the man lives. He said that at this point he is fairly sure the rocks are not organic in origin.

James hopes someone might recognize his rocks as similar to rocks that other people might have in their private collections.

"If they're out there hiking in the mountains and think they see a rock with this profile shape, please don't disturb it," he said. "Note it's location and notify a member of the scientific community."

He said that determining the origin of the rocks could mean great things for El Paso.

"After three years of asking and three years of looking, I'm convinced" this is something new, James said.

More details


# The rocks have a dome-shaped top.

# They have a rimmed edge.

# Each has a concave bottom.

# Each has slight fluting from the bottom to the rimmed edge.

# A thumbprint-size depression is on the rock's bottom.

# If you have a similar rock or would like more information, call Stanton James at 755-0763.
Source
 
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#22
Mystery rock fascinates farmer


Roland Ritter, of Rudyard, has a complicated relationship with rocks.

"Years and years ago when I was young — I'm ancient now — I took a course in stone masonry," said Ritter, 88.

Over the years, he has left his mark on the world with a number of stone projects, from fireplaces to the stone fence outside the Rudyard Depot Museum.

But as a farmer, Ritter despised the stones scattered across his fields, dropped there by glaciers that vanished long ago.

Every fall, he walked his land, hauling off the most offensive chunks.

"I've picked a million of 'em in my long and exciting life," he said.

Like weeds, more of them sprang out of the earth every year.

"I don't think there's anything farmers hate worse than picking rocks," said Ritter, whose son now farms the place.

"Some of 'em have to be chiseled out of the ground and some of 'em are so large you have to use a front-end loader," he said.

But it was a small rock that caught Ritter's eye one day as he combed the crop rows.

Roughly the size of two fists, it was pierced by a perfect hole.

"I've never seen another one like it," said Ritter, who has been trying for more than a year to find someone who can tell him who put it there: man or Mother Nature?

He's been told that it's not igneous, meaning that it's not the volcanic variety.

He's taken the stone to Montana State University-Northern in Havre and consulted rock hounds, friends and strangers in search of answers.

But so far, no one has offered a definitive theory.

"I think it was done by human beings," said Ritter, who believes that small rings inside the hole look like borings.

"I could be wrong," he said. "But that's just my imagination working."

If he's right, Ritter wants to know who drilled the rock — a homesteader or a Indian hundreds or thousands of years ago? How did they do it and why?

"I'm still looking for the answers to those questions," he said.

Do you have a theory?
Source
 
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#24
Pete Younger said:
Don't suppose there was a pic Emps.
Indeed there is - click "Source" in my post for the original article with slighty unhelpful picture ;)

There are of course plenty of good explanations:

1. There was some kind of cyclindrical fossil in there that weather out.

2. There was some kind of weaker material was weathered out.

3. It was drilled by a human - there is nothing to suggest it is ancient.
 

elffriend

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#25
I have often found rocks like this and thought nothing of them (although usually the rocks are slate and alot softer). I have always thought that the holes were fossilised worm burrows, but then again I am not an expert in rocks or fossils :D

Although I agree with Emps that the hole probably contained something cylindrical like a belamnite that has fallen out.
 
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#27
Last updated Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Boulder in farm field creates big mystery

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- A big rock has spouted in a farm field in Cedar Rapids, creating a big mystery. It wasn't there last year. "We picked the corn last fall and the field was fine. We came back this spring to do some field work, and this big rock was here," said Bob Taylor, 51, a hired man for Balderston Farms of Central City.

That was four weeks ago.

Taylor, who guesstimated the boulder at 15,000 pounds, said maybe it was a meteorite.

But the rock is clean, not burned. It's sitting on the field, not in a crater.

Taylor said the rock didn't rise out of the ground as stones tend to do when a field is plowed because it's too big for that.

Taylor wondered if the boulder rolled off a truck that was hauling it to a housing development across the street.

One fence post leans a little toward the rock, as if it might have been grazed by the boulder as it rolled off a truck, down the embankment and into the field.

Still, the clues for that scenario don't seem real evident, either.

"Why didn't it make some kind of indentation from the road to here?" Taylor asked. "That's the mystery."

There are scratch marks on the boulder, as if it was lifted by a machine. But it's unlikely someone plopped the rock in the field with a crane in preparation for another housing development.

Randy Balderston has been renting the ground to farm for 15 years, and nobody told him or Taylor about it.

"Nobody's said anything about it," Taylor said. "Nobody's claimed it. Nobody's moved it."

For now, Taylor said, they'll farm around it.

"I can't lift it," he said. "We figure, whoever owns it, a contractor or whatever, will come back for it."

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Information from: The Gazette, http://www.gazetteonline.com/

Copyright 2005 Associated Press.
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Sharon Hill

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