Weird History


Uh, yep, I’m up at 4 a.m.  Took some meds at 1 a.m., but rolled over onto that side of my face and woke up, despite the pain killers.  So, I’m going to share a weird history fact.

Mercury is used in all sorts of things.  We primarily know it as the stuff inside thermometers and barometers, but it’s used in manufacturing of an array of items.  None of which instantly come to mind.

In it’s purest form, as a liquid, it is relatively harmless.  Emphasis on the “relatively” part, since it is toxic.  In vapor form, it’s a highly deadly gas and listed as a carcinogenic (if you live that long after exposure).

That’s not the weird part.

In recent years, we’ve (the world) began exploring sunken ships from WWII.  There have been a couple of U-Boats (German Submarines) found.  The entire cargo has been mercury.

Mercury is not a precious metal.  It has uses, but unless a person is in want of mercury vapor, it isn’t all that useful during war times.  You can’t make bombs or bullets out of it.  It isn’t great for reinforcing buildings that have been bombed.  It just isn’t a huge war time commodity.

So, while most countries were stock piling hard metals to make bombs and bullets, the Germans were stockpiling mercury.  The Germans were very smart.  They invented a lot of things and if you ask an engineer, they’ll tell you that the Nazi War Machine was running about 20 years ahead of everyone else in the technology department.

Which makes you wonder: Why the hell were they stockpiling mercury?

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1 Comment

  1. T.Vogt

     /  February 2, 2015

    I have several Nazi Germany coins they are zinc/mercury mix, you also didn’t mention fillings you know those mercury almagam that they want to redo these days.. It retarded fungal growth and was used in paints until they decided silly kids of my generation used to like the taste of it in paint chips.. I’d have to look up any more factoids… those are just what I can remember.

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