Report on Witching for Water

Issue 12 and Volume 61.

Report on Witching for Water The idea that a forked twig, or so-called divining rod, is useful in locating minerals, etc., is one that has been a subject of discussion since the middle of the sixteenth century and still has a strong hold on the popular mind, even in this country. This is evident from the large number of inquiries received each year by the United States Geological Survey, Department of the Interior, as to the efficacy of such a twig, especially for locating underground water. To furnish a reply to these inquiries the Geological Survey has published a brief paper, by Arthur J. Ellis, on the history of water witching, with a bibliography that includes an astonishing number of books and pamphlets on this subject. In summary the paper states: It is doubtful whether so much investigation and discussion have been bestowed on any other subject with such absolute…

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