A serendipitous source, 1E 1048.1-5937, was discovered during Einstein imaging observations of the Carina nebula. On July 13, 1979, this source had an intensity of 0.14 IPC counts/s, and the signal was 65 percent pulsed with a period of 6.44 s. An earlier observation failed to detect any source with strength greater than 1/10 the above signal. The source is therefore highly variable, perhaps transient. An Exosat observation of this source on June 20, 1985 confirmed the pulse period and refined the source position to an accuracy of 10 arcsec. On the basis of the position, the source is tentatively identified with a V = 19 optical counterpart. The X-ray spectrum is best fitted by a power law with photon index = 2.26 and a column density of 1.6 x 10 to the 22nd atoms/sq cm. The X-ray characteristics are consistent with an accretion-powered Be star binary.