The Field of Cauls is an institution unique to Melbourne. It was a broad, flat region, stretching roughly from the Rosstown railroad north to Dandenong Road, and between Hotham/Williams Roads and Grange Road west to east. And of course, its function was twofold. To the south and west, it was an infant cemetary. To the north and east, there was a sacred glade – local histories state that it was never used as a corroboree site by the Kulin peoples (which, let’s face it, pretty much means for sure that it does) – which was regarded as a particularly lucky place to give birth. It was believed to guarantee good luck, good health and so on, to the child thus born.

The name of the place came from the large number of babies born with cauls there. While the general frequency of caul births is around 1 in 10,000, for births at the Field of Cauls, it was more like 1 in 5. The reasons for this statistical anomaly are still unknown – although it is notable that if births at that site are excluded from the list, the global frequency since the start of records drops to about 1 in 80,000. Given that all these births took place in the years between 1847 and 1883, the mystery only grows greater. We can say with some authority what is was not.

It was not the result of alien intervention. It was not the result of any residual Kulin magics. It was not the result of the scientific experiments of Viktor von Frankenstien (although he was active near the region, it was not until a later date). It was not due to the effects of time travel from the past (although it may have been caused by time travelers from the future).

That doesn’t leave much. The most likely theory is that it is the result of an unknown – and now utterly depleted – mutagen, most likely emanating from the springs feeding the pond now in the middle of Caulfield Racecourse.

Suburbs near Caulfield:

Prahran Armadale Malvern Malvern Malvern Glen Iris
St Kilda East Caulfield North Caulfield North Caulfield North Malvern Malvern East
St Kilda East Caulfield North Caulfield North Caulfield North Caulfield East Malvern East
St Kilda East Caulfield North Caulfield North Caulfield North Caulfield East Carnegie
Elsternwick Elsternwick Caulfield Caulfield Glen Huntly Carnegie
Elsternwick Elsternwick Caulfield South Caulfield South Glen Huntly Carnegie
Brighton Gardenvale Caulfield South Caulfield South Ormond Ormond
Brighton Brighton East Brighton East Ormond Ormond Ormond
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