Dry As Dust

A Fortean in the Archives


Adventures in time #2: Three 1950s youths in a medieval plague village

    Kersey in 1957. Although Jack Merriott's watercolor presents an idealized image of the village – it was commissioned for use in a railway advertising campaign – it does give an idea of just how 'old' Kersey must have looked to strangers in the year it became central to a 'timeslip' case.

"Looking back, the really strange
thing was the silence. The way the church bells stopped ringing as the
little group of naval cadets neared the village. The way even the ducks
stood quiet and motionless by the shallow stream that ran across the
road where the main street began."

When Bill Laing and
two other new recruits to the Royal Navy were ordered to take part in a
routine map-reading exercise one October day in 1957, the aim was to
find their way a few miles cross country to the Suffolk village of
Kersey - not back in time to the village as it had been sometime between
1349 and 1420. But the strange, frightening and deserted place that the
three boys encountered looked nothing like any 20th century hamlet. So
where - and when - were they?

A reinvestigation of a little-known ´´timeslip´´ case kicks off the new Smithsonian blog Past Imperfect - and you can read the full article here.

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