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 Carthage-Knightstown ‘Time Warp’ Claims Another Victim

Occasionally, if you look in the right direction, there are answers to questions that, for centuries, have gone unexplained.

Stay with me on this one.

Pretend you aren’t reading my column, and instead, William Shatner is speaking directly to you at this very moment. Shatner is sitting in his captain’s chair in the Starship Enterprise:

“It was August, star date 2008, when scientists first confirmed the existence of the Knightstown-Carthage Time Warp, or black hole, if you will.”

All right, maybe Shatner is a little too much, even for this column.

Hey, I know there are skeptics out there, but everyone who has lived in the Knightstown and Carthage areas for any extended period of time will admit that occasionally, the unexplained occurs.

I first became suspicious when I was in second grade at Carthage Elementary School. My teacher, Mrs. Skillman, had given an assignment that was due Monday and would be a time-consuming project. Of course, I remembered that assignment when I was getting on the school bus on Monday morning.

I don’t remember a lot about second grade … I don’t remember a lot about last week … but I do remember the feeling of sheer panic and the sweat rolling down my back. I remember thinking “I really wish I could turn back the clock and give myself a little more time.”

The assignment was, and I believe I was the only one in the class to have it, to look up in the dictionary the definition of the word “procrastination.”

Anyway, moments later I got my wish. It was suddenly Friday, and my assignment wasn’t due until Monday. The clock had been turned back, and I was grateful for that because I had missed the last two days of school due to a severe cold.

The Knightstown-Carthage Time Warp had intervened and given me a break.

My next experience with the phenomenon occurred on January 28, 1978, when me and two childhood buddies, David Steinwachs and Eric Schmidt, were busting snow drifts during the wee hours of the morning in northern Rush County following the infamous “Blizzard of ‘78'.

We hit a massive snow drift, the front tires left the ground and the engine compartment was filled with packed snow. The wind chill was well below zero and there wasn’t a house in sight.

I got back into Steinwachs’ El Camino while they were digging through the snow, and I remember wishing I was somewhere else. I might have fallen asleep, or possibly been time-warped to another place, but a little while later I came to and we were driving back toward Knightstown.

Saved again by some strange, unexplained phenomenon.

I’m sure there are literally millions of you who have experienced similar, eerie happenings while traveling between Knightstown and Carthage. Those, and more personal experiences, have convinced me that there really is a time warp that is somehow connected to northern Rush County.

With that in mind, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Carthage Town Marshal Dan Murphy would inexplicably issue not one, but two tow stickers, both on the same day but dated exactly 24 hours apart, to the window of a local resident’s truck.

I’m sure you read about this last week.

Scott McFerran, who lives between Knightstown and Carthage, had been canoeing in Big Blue River for roughly four hours and had parked his truck near the Carthage Pike. When he returned to his vehicle, it had mysteriously disappeared.

While McFerran had only been fishing a few hours, apparently his truck had been parked by the Carthage Pike for nearly two days.

Stay with me again, because this gets really weird. McFerran went fishing on Monday, Aug. 4, the day his truck disappeared. Upon locating the truck in Rushville, McFerran observed two tow stickers affixed to the window. One sticker was dated Aug. 3, and the other sticker was dated Aug. 2, meaning his vehicle had actually been parked for two full days, not just four hours.

This is interesting information, because it may very well reveal the eastern border of the time warp. McFerran might have been in the eye of the black hole, and if so, his truck couldn’t have been. Or vice-versa, I’m not sure how the black holes actually work.

Murphy said he had just made a mistake and misdated both tow tags, and then had the truck towed on day three, which was actually the same day. But that makes no sense whatsoever, so maybe, just maybe, it wasn’t a mistake.

Could Murphy have been another victim of the Knightstown-Carthage Time Warp? Or perhaps, the victim was McFerran, who got stuck with the $80 towing bill?

I’ve never met the marshal, so all I can do is guess that a sworn-to-serve-and-protect law enforcement officer would know if he issued two tow stickers within minutes of each other and what day he took a pen and filled out those stickers.

I don’t think I’ve met McFerran, but I know a lot of guys who have wives or girlfriends. I don’t know any men, including me, who are given permission to fish for a few hours and can stretch that out for two days without getting in serious trouble.

That being said, the only explanation is, we now have proof of the existence of the Knightstown-Carthage Time Warp, because that theory actually makes more sense.

To Murphy, exactly 24 hours, to the minute, had passed in between filling out the two stickers, and another 24 hours went by before the truck was towed. But to McFerran, at the most, just a few hours went by.

Enter once again, Shatner:

“The truck’s owner, parked for hours, but actually days, unaware of the black hole, fell victim to the laws of the …”

It truly is a mystery, but a time warp is the only explanation that can make sense. After all of these years, there is finally justice for those who have always believed in this phenomenon.

And in case you’re curious, despite given the reprieve, I never did look up that word, and was given an incomplete on that second grade assignment.


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