Marine biologists believe they are now in possession of the oldest message in a bottle ever discovered. 

A retired postal worker, Marianne Winkler, came forward with the 108-year-old bottle after picking it up in April on a beach in the German island of Amrum in the North Sea.

The woman and her husband followed the directions on the note inside the bottle and sent it back to the UK Marine Biological Association. 

It turns out a researcher named George Parker Bidder had tossed 1,020 of the bottles into the sea between 1904 and 1906 in an effort to study ocean currents.

The note promised a one-shilling reward for the person who found the bottle and returned it.

The Winklers ended up collecting...

Jenna Lee discussed the amazing find with Marine Biological Association spokesman Guy Baker. 

Baker said this is an example of the early days of "citizen science," which has now been replaced by much more sophisticated ways of studying the oceans.

He said scientists now use electronic sensors to measure currents, ocean depth, salinity and other things, while attaching tracking tags to fish, making them the "modern-day messages in a bottle."

Baker said 599 of the bottles have been returned, so more than 400 could still be floating around. 

Watch the full "Happening Now" segment above.