September 04, 2008

Viking ship buried with Indians?

Native burial grounds near Tisch Mills may include Viking shipSimilar stone structures and mounds in Michigan's Upper Peninsula have been photographed in a book by Betty Sodders of Sault Ste. Marie, so Vandervest called her. Sodders put him in touch with Colfax-based Wayne May, editor of Ancient American magazine. May visited the site with Merlin Redcloud, a Ho-Chunk shaman and historian. Several archaeologists, as well as surveyor Jim Scherz of the Ancient Earth Society, Dale Reimer of Two Rivers and historians from a half dozen tribes, also have studied it.

May "knew right away it was important," says Vandervest, adding that Redcloud recognized it as a burial site. Of special interest is the wall's pipestone, a soft red rock found in Minnesota.

But something else also intrigues May. About 100 feet from the wall are limestone boulders in the shape and size (25 feet wide by 100 feet long) of an ancient Viking ship, which he believes could be buried beneath the rock. A similar Viking ship was found in England, but was buried in dirt, not stone, Vandervest says.

The structure is not far from a once-navigable branch of the East Twin River. It's rumored, Vandervest says, that Vikings regularly came to North America 800 to 1,000 years ago and made it to Michigan's Upper Peninsula. A Ho-Chunk legend tells of Native Americans meeting tall red-haired men, Vandervest says.

"(Historians) suspect it had to do with the copper trade, that thousands and thousands of tons of copper were removed. It's possible there was a village in this area where they would process it into manageable-sized ingots they called oxides," Vandervest says.
Comment:  So the evidence for a buried Viking ship is a couple of giants rocks shaped like a Viking ship? Because when their ships became unseaworthy, the Vikings usually buried them? And marked the spot with giant rocks that would've taken hundreds of men to move into position?

And the local Indians let the foreigners disturb their burial ground because they liked thinking of their ancestors sailing away on a ship? So they helped move the giant rocks into position? Because small rocks or rock carvings wouldn't have been enough to memorialize the occasion?

Okay, if you say so.

If the archaeologists are smart, they'll watch out. If they start digging, you can guess what will happen. Indian or Viking zombies will erupt from the ground.

Alas, this posting sounds like an outtake from last year's Pathfinder. I'm going to go out on a limb and guess they won't find a Viking ship under the ship-shaped rock.

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