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No. 115: Jan-Feb 1998

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Frog Fall

June 16, 1937. Frackville, Pennsylvania.

"Astonished householders of this little mining town, ten miles north of Pottsville, went out with brooms and swept bullfrogs off their open porches after a thunderstorm today.
"The tiny frogs sounded like the thudding of hailstones as they dropped by hundreds on tin roofs.
"Miniature "twisters" accompanying the rain had lifted the frogs several yards into the air, it was suggested, and dropped them over Frackville."

(Anonymous; "Bullfrogs by the Hundred Fall in Pennsylvania Rain," New York Times, June 17, 1937. Cr. M. Piechota.

Comment. The "whirlwind theory" is always trotted out to account for fish, frog, and toad falls. It is not easy to find hundreds of tiny frogs in a marsh and then vacuum them up without also levitating considerable plant debris and other marsh dwellers.

From Science Frontiers #115, JAN-FEB 1998. 1998-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987