Sunday, April 6, 2014

In Search of Mokele-Mbembe

For centuries natives have told stories of Mokele-Mbembe, a massive river creature that dwelled deep in the jungles of Africa.  Many thought it was just a fairy tale, an old superstition that kept children away from the dangerous creatures to be found in the great waters.  A few believed the stories had a basis in fact and were evidence of a surviving colony of sauropods.

Now we know the truth.

Camille Renversade brings us the fruits of the forgotten 1938 expedition to Cameroon. Given the clear photographic and physical evidence is it any wonder that the expedition's very existence has been suppressed all these years?

An English translation of the original French page is available here. Browse around and you'll find some equally interesting examples of cryptozoological discovery.


Barry John said...

Nice original idea, always good to see. Anyone got any tips on making stamps? I can't find a cutter to make the tearing edges anywhere.

CoastConFan said...

I learned something today. I had not previously heard of the Mokele-Mbembe and the Wikipedia article was quite enlightening. Camille Renversade’s Mon Cabinet De Curiosities website is outstanding. I like how he has layered the story of Dodo expedition by wrapping supporting facts around the prop to give it a patina of believability. The well-executed photos and supporting props help the feeling of authenticity.

The shipping case is a good piece of reengineering. It is a crate typically used to transport vegetables, often seen outside the back door of restaurants. All you have to do is score one to make a convincing crate. Additionally the very thin wood can be cut for a variety of projects. A good resource for high quality images of 1920s & 30s period stamps is the internet.

Propnomicon has some good posts and discussion about period boxes and packing material here:

Propnomicon said...

@ Barry John

There are decorative edge scissors and rotary cutters that create a good approximation of a postal-style perforated edge.

@ CoastConFan

The dodo is pretty sweet. There's a lot to like about the whole site.

Sweet Jebus, man, you remember my postings better than I do. Heh.

Anonymous said...

Those decorative edge scissors suck compared to actual perforations. Send a prepared sheet of stamps to The Olathe Poste and they'll perforate them for a fee.

CoastConFan said...

@ Prop yeah, I got the memory of an elephant when it comes to esoteria, but just let me get to the grocery store without my list … Perforations can be made with a perforation line cutter, available at some craft stores for about $10. Of course you have no ability to get the exact space gauge you want, but I don’t expect an advanced stamp collector to show up with a perforation gauge and out you. A pastry cutter might do also

Propnomicon stamp post: Vintage Egyptian Postage

Lynn Christopher said...

@ Barry John

A lot of craft die-cutting machines have dies with the classic stamp shape. Or one like the Silhouette will let you make your own custom pattern - I have that one, it does a really nice clean job on perforations.