Almost no one recognizes this antique tool – are you one of the few who do?

As time goes on, things change quickly. Trends come and go, and when we get old, the world can seem very different from what we remember.

I’m not just talking about big changes, but also the little ones that happen over many years. My grandmother used to talk about things she did when she was young. She’d show us strange objects that nobody else knew about.

I think it’ll be the same for me if I live as long as she did.

I guess it’s this feeling of remembering the past that makes “what’s this?” articles so popular online. These are pictures that people upload because they want to know what an old object is and what it was used for.

Right now, there’s a new one of these articles going around, and it’s really hard to figure out what the object is and what it does.

I have to admit, I had no idea what the tool in the picture was when I first saw it online. But luckily, there were people who did know…

Credit / USGS (US Geological Survey)

When you first see it, it looks like an ordinary tree branch. It’s V-shaped and doesn’t seem special.

But it’s been a helpful tool for people since the 1500s. It’s used in something called “Water Dowsing.”

This tool has many names, like “diviner,” “doodlebug,” “well witch,” or “water-finder.”

And what does it do? Exactly what you think: it finds water!

Credit / Shutterstock – Grandpa

To use the stick, a person holds one branch in each hand with their palms up. They tilt the bottom of the V-shaped part toward the ground at a 45-degree angle.

Then, they walk around, hoping to feel vibrations at the bottom of the V. These vibrations are supposed to indicate where there might be water underground.

This method, called dowsing, was first used in the 1500s to find metals in the ground. But later on, people started using it to find water, especially for folks living in rural areas who needed it for their homes.

Did you know what this instrument was for? Let us know in the comments box.