Technological achievements of the past that cannot be properly explained

1874: USS Alarm - what was it?

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A spar torpedo consists of a bomb on a long pole or spar, carried by a small, fast, low-lying boat. Under the cover of night or fog the torpedo boat stealthily approaches an enemy ship and detonates the bomb close to the vulnerable underwater hull. This may sound simple enough in theory, but...

1893: 100 MPH High Speed Electric Train

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This is definitely not something I have ever heard about before. How about a 100 MPH electric train in 1893. And what's interesting, it sounds like they actually started implementing this project by grading 24 miles of the proposed real estate. Logically, this fact is supposed to mean that they...

Electric Machine Guns, Coilguns and Death Ray Guns of Yesteryear

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The first successful machine-gun designs were developed in the mid-19th century. The key characteristic of modern machine guns, their relatively high rate of fire and more importantly mechanical loading, first appeared in the Model 1862 Gatling gun, which was adopted by the United States Navy...

World’s Fair 1939-40 Female Sex Robots

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I cannot find any evidence of who designed and built these robots. It is as if they have just sprung in to our timeline. And searching around the web, the syndicated news articles are all written as if the writer is 'shocked' by their revelation... The article also mentions this guy, who we have...

18th & 19th centuries: artificial Earthquakes, Volcanoes and Tsunamis

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Isn't it interesting that back in 1750 (probably way earlier than that) people knew what needed to be done to cause an artificial earthquake. It definitely appears that they also knew how to cause a tsunami. Google Ngram did not disappoint. I picked a few book excerpts to demonstrate the content...

19th Century Noah's Arks: Whaleback Steamer Ships

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A whaleback was a type of cargo steamship of unusual design, with a hull that continuously curved above the waterline from vertical to horizontal. When fully loaded, only the rounded portion of the hull (the "whaleback" proper) could be seen above the waterline. With sides curved in towards the...

Artificial Ancient Granite and Marble

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And having now fully described my said invention and the manner in which the same is to be performed, I declare that what I claim as new and of my invention is the mode or modes hereinbefore described of making an artificial granite-stone, marble, or concrete. And I declare that I do not confine...

Robocops, Automatons, and Mechanized War Chariots of the Ancient World

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They are immune to heat and cold, untouched by the elements, and can fly, mounting upward with a fluttering motion. They dwell apart from the chaotic world of man, subsist on air and dew, are not anxious like ordinary people, and have the smooth skin and innocent faces of children. The...

The Wrath of the Gods: GeoWeapons vs Mud Flood

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It's been mentioned in various posts here and there, but I do not think we have a dedicated thread for this "liquefied dirt" phenomena yet. We are yet to approach any sort of understanding of our Mud Flood related issues where buildings ended up buried in the dirt. What if some advanced weapon...

Early 19th Century: Highway Steam Locomotives, Related Laws and Roads

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In 1829 Hancock built a small ten-seater bus called the Infant, with which in 1831 he began a regular service between Stratford and London. It was powered by an oscillating engine carried on an outrigger behind the back axle. The boiler was vertical and made up of a series of narrow parallel...

Ancient and early 20th century Robots

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A while back I ran into this 1900 Automatic Man. As far as I can remember, the robotic qualities were dismissed by a semi-elaborate hoax, where an electric carriage was used to propel the contraption forward. A walking automaton has been invented by Louis Philip Perew of Tonawanda, which...

1649 Vehicle a.k.a. Nuremberg Carriage By Johann Hautsch?

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A celebrated mechanician called Johan Hautsch of Nuremburg in Germany built an ornate carriage in 1649. It is thought to have been worked by two men concealed inside, who turned the rear axle by means of handles. It is reported to have gone up and down hills, and steered around corners, and...

1886 Meigs Elevated Railway: 227 feet of BS

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The Meigs Elevated Railway was an experimental steam-powered monorail invented by Josiah V. Meigs of Lowell, Massachusetts. He wrote an extensive explanation of how the railway worked, complete with diagrams and statistics, which was published in 1887. The weight of the train was carried on a 22...

Prague astronomical clock: Orloj

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You would think a device of such magnificence and importance would have been heavily depicted by painters, artists and photographers over the millennia, but it appears not at least form a quick internet search, perhaps it is depicted in books, etc not online. The clock was first installed in...

Weather Vanes vs. Air Travel, and may be Flags

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In my opinion the Weather Vanes mounted on top of the older, or "ancient" buildings had practical, rather than decorative purposes. To be exact, it was to show the direction of the wind to the pilots of the ancient airships. I understand that it probably sounds way too bananas crazy for some...

Pre-1872 Cerbere and Belier: what are these ships?

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I meant to start this thread as soon as I had a chance to observe these two ironclads docked in Cherbourg, France. This photo was allegedly taken in 1882, if we were to believe the backside of the photograph, which could actually be a postcard. It's hard to say if any rivets were used...

1873: Russian Round Armored Ships of Admiral Popov

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The existence of these two round Russian armored ships in 1873 does not appear to be a widely known fact. As we came to find out, information is not really hidden, for it is publicly available for research. Yet, certain things are simply not being disseminated. Personally, I found these round...

150 Foot tall "streetlights" Los Angeles 1800s

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I am new to SH and have not posted yet. I have enjoyed this forum and have been reading everything. My first post maybe should be in the introduction area but I ran across this streetlight dilemma and needed to share it. I will do my best at posting photos, descriptions and links. Most posts on...

What are minarets really for?

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Minarets are called manāra in Arabic, which comes from a word meaning fire, beacon, or light. This already gives us a clue to the purpose these towers once served: to collect and produce energy, perhaps emitting light from the top, or powering houses and buildings in the town around it. Minarets...

Flight - A Revised History

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Something is clearly up with the history of aeronautics we've been sold. At present, the current narrative suggests that the Montgolfier brothers balloon was the first craft to successfully take to the air. The first free (non tethered) human flight took place on November 21, 1783, by science...

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