THE curious case of Tarcutta's haunted milking machine has been immortalised in print by writers Paul Cropper and Tony Healy.
It all started on January 10, 1949 when a report in The Daily Advertiser related a yarn of how a milking machine owned by farmer Laurence Wilkinson malfunctioned.
When the milking machine was used, metal plates in the machine were thrown 230 metres away with no obvious cause, it continued for almost a year.
The milking machine was used by Mr Wilkinson as he had a crippled hand milking 100 cows manually was extremely difficult.
Dubbed a 'haunted' farm in newspaper reports, the phenomenon was witnessed by engineer Alexander Portors and several other people but the cause was never established.
"There was a lot of evidence and eye witness testimony that something strange was going on there for a year," Mr Cropper said.
The haunting of the milking machine garnered national attention and the then Prime Minister Ben Chiefly was asked to intervene.
While CSIRO and other investigators of the time believe it was a simple hoax, both Mr Cropper and Mr Healy believe it was the work of a poltergeist or "noisy ghost".
A report written by two CSIRO scientists was later revisited by one of the them and Mr Cropper said they believed they may have been wrong.
"One of them was so perplexed, 25 years later he returned to re-investigate it," Mr Cropper said.
He said it two a number of years to collate the material for the book, Australian Poltergeist.
Australian Poltergeist can be ordered online through www.australianpoltergeist.com or in bookstores in late March.
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