In 1961, Wally Lane, Mike Mikesell and Virginia Maxey, co-owners of the LM&V Rockhounds Gem and Gift Shop in Olancha, California, went into the Coso Mountains to look for unusual rocks.
They found a fossil-encrusted geode on February 13, 1961, on a mountain peak 4,300 feet high, about 340 feet above the dry Owens Lake, six miles northeast of Olancha. Geologists estimate that about 10,000 years ago, Owens Lake was as high as the top of the peak.
After Mike Mikesell had ruined a diamond saw blade in cutting it open, the geode proved to contain something strange. In the middle of the geode was a metal core, about .08 inch (2 millimeters) in diameter.
Enclosing the core was what appeared to be a ceramic collar that was itself encased in a hexagonal sleeve carved out of wood that had, presumably at a later date, become petrified. Around the petrified wooden enclosure was the outer layer of the geode, consisting of hardened clay, pebbles, bits of fossil shell, and two nonmagnetic metallic objects resembling a nail and a washer?
A fragment of copper still remaining between the ceramic and the petrified wood suggests that the two may once have been separated by a now decomposed copper sleeve. Later, the x-ray of the object would reveal a shape resembling a spark plug, according to the editor of INFO Journal (International Fortean Organization), Paul Willis.
Based on an approximate stratification and the composition of the outer crust, the object has been dated from 250,000 to 500,000 BCE, but the name of the geologist who provided the dating is not mentioned in any source material.
A member of INFO visited Maxey and Lane. Maxey stated that the object isn’t magnetic now (article printed in 1969), but she apparently said it was magnetic in a February, 1961 article in Desert Magazine. An INFO article concluded with the statement that no professional scientist has ever investigated the artifact, and that the owners are asking an exorbitant payment before they’ll let anyone examine it.
If we assume that it is an alien artifact, or something left over from an advanced ancient culture and not just a fossil encrusted spark plug, what might it be?
The construction is reminiscent of modern attempts at superconductors. If anyone would try to replicating the object using ceramic superconductors and then cooling it off with liquid nitrogen, it might be interesting to see what happens…