My theory

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My theory

Postby JodyLane on Sat Jan 17, 2004 3:28 pm

I am going out on a limb here, but here it is.

I believe the treasure on Oak Island may be connected to the famous 1715 hurricane loss of gold and silver being sent back to Spain from the New World. Mel Fisher uncovered millions from the loss of the Atocha which went down in 1622.
Imagine a few treasure laden ships getting caught up in a hurricane of the shores of Florida and sinking. But one ship manages to survive. The crew realizes it would be considered lost as well. So the ship makes its' way up the east coast northward, using gold and silver coinage minted in the crude manner the spanish did in America to buy supplies. Lets face it the gold pieces of eight found in these shipwrecks were going to Spain, not coming from it so these coins were minted in America.

Because the English, the French and the Spanish were all trying to gain footholds in America, many manners of coinage was used in America so Spanish coins would not have raised suspicion.

Because so much gold and silver left the New World, there must have been much deep mining. So for my theory's sake, there may have been several mining engineers on board this one surviving ship.

Realizing they had a fortune and would be executed for not bringing the treasure to the rulers of Spain, they decided to travel somewhere to deposit the treasure for some length of time until it would be expected that everyone back home would accept that they died in the storm. At that point they could recover the treasure, divide it up, and live quietly in the New World.

Arriving on Oak Island, with the mining engineers, they construct a maze of tunnels where the gold and silver are stached. Now once these tunnels are complete, they need a way to keep others from reaching the treasure. So they construct the Money Pit as an air tight cork screw and actually leave signs something is buried right there, like the block and tackle on the oak tree. Once the Money Pit is dug up, water is pulled through the tunnels like Champaigne flying out of the bottle when the cork is pulled out.

My belief is even if those who might have been chasing this one ship found the Pit and tried to dig it up and got swamped, the builders of the Pit and tunnels had some way of shutting it off.

As for all the drilling at the Money Pit over the years, there may be treasure in it, but just a small porton as a decoy. The rest resides in the tunnels. A piece of partchment and a few gold links of chain could have been dropped haphazardly by the originators of the pit.

As for why the originators of the Pit never returned. Possibly another storm took thier lives.

I can't believe that the Pit was constructed more than 100 years before the 1795 bunch found it. There was a man made road on the Island at that time and anyone who has farmed will tell you even if rake up the top soil, after a certain number of years weeds and grass will eventually cover it up.

My conclusion is that the only scientific proof of treasure resides with Dan Blankenship and bore hole X. His photos may be murky, but they show something. If I ever win one of those $200 million dollar lotteries here in the USA, I'll pay David Tobias his $12 million to go look into the Pit as long as he signs over the land to Blankenship at bore hole X, where I'd spend twice as much to solve the mystery. Anyone have the winning numbers to the Powerball???
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Theory

Postby Tank03 on Sat Jan 17, 2004 8:22 pm

Jodylane,

Good theory, it shows yo are thinking about this enigma but as with all good theories, there is one big hole in it.

Carbon dating of wood artifacts found on the island has the deposit being done in the mid to late 16th century a full 150 years before your theory.

Not to fear though, much of what you say has merit and I think you are on the right track. All any of us can do is guess and wait until Blankenship gets his chance to be proven right or wrong. Maybe David Tobias will find the secrets and let us all in on it, I doubt it though, he is one stone faced poker player. No the type of guy to let things slip.
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Postby JodyLane on Sat Jan 17, 2004 9:44 pm

True my theory may have a big hole in it. Then again the only carbon dating that would give us real time for building of the Pit would be the timbers Smith and Company dragged out of the original Pit in 1795-1804.
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Carbon dating

Postby Tank03 on Sun Jan 18, 2004 4:25 pm

Jodylane,

Not so Jodylane, other pieces of wood have been found on Oak Island, some near the surface and some from 235 down that have been analysed and most of it points to the 16th century.

These discoveries are as provoking as the tiers of logs found in the Money Pit in 1795 and again in 1804 by the treasure hunters of that time. It would be dificult for me to accept that the evidence found in the Money Pit (tiers of logs), Smith's Cove (coconut fibre, Spanish scissors, "U" shaped structure etc.,etc.) and Borehole 10X (wood, chain, metal) are not from the same time and same originators of the underground workings.

While unfortunate that they did not have the vision to retain some of the wood and other materials they found, they fell victim to the oldest and commonest of the human frailties, hindsight is 20/20 vision, foresight is blind.
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Carbon Dating of Wood

Postby . . . on Sun Jan 18, 2004 8:25 pm

Tank

You've obviously dug into this subject to give this answer, so you're the guy to answer some questions that have been bugging me for years.

1. If a tree falls down 100 years before it's used, how is this an accurate indicatation of the year of origin? If a 50 year-old ship, made of well-seasoned timbers, is broken up and used, how is this an accurate indication of the year of origin?

2. If it's possible to date from tree rings, or to calibrate the C14 scale (dendrochronology), then surely this implies that the rings of the tree must be of different ages. So, if a tree is 250 years old when cut down and used, wouldn't carbon dating of different parts of the tree give different dates? I assume this cannot be so, or C14 analysis of wood samples could never provide an accurate method of dating.

Can anyone please enlighten me as to how a tree grows (not too technical), about tree rings, and if any part of a tree is dead wood while it's growing?
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Dating

Postby Tank03 on Sun Jan 18, 2004 11:54 pm

GB,

I am not the guy to answer that question with great authority. I do know that carbon dating is not an exact science without knowing some of the history/information of the piece you are analysing. Each sample type has specific problems like contamination and special environmantal effects. For example, one piece of wood from the island was analysed and it came back with a reading that made it being from in the future, impossible of course, but with a coating of preservative like pitch blend (contamination) you get a false reading.

Carbon dating is also referred to as absolute dating, or the determination of an age of an actual object. As time passes, the carbon -14 in dead objects decay at a given rate that can be measured if you are smart enough to know how to do it and have a lab to back you up.

There are many other types of dating techniques for different materials for example, Archaeomagnetism is good for pottery or as you point out, dendrochronology for tree rings. Uranium - Thorium dating is good for wood, bones and sediment especially if it has been found in a cave.

I am a rank amateur on this and get my stuff from books and the internet. A real expert will have to tackle your questions.
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Postby . . . on Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:27 am

JodyLane

Can't fault the reasoning, but how would you go about testing, or proving, your theory? How far have you gone into this? How many ships were there in the 1715 fleet? How many were lost (10, I think) and how many are so far unaccounted for? Remember, there were survivors who left accounts of the 1715 disaster, and I'm fairly sure one ship made it.

A possible weakness of your theory is that it may be too specific, too soon. Why pick on the 1715 fleet? What did you base this decision on? The Spanish kept detailed records of their shipments. Any ship that went missing could be the one that ended up on Oak Island. So, in what years did this happen? This would give an idea of the number of possible 'instances'.

Your theory slots into a generic 'Spaniards buried treasure from a Spanish Galleon' theory, which seems more credible the earlier it's placed. In this respect, the 16th century must be favourite, and you may find it easier to tag along with Tank until there's a better idea of the date of the enterprise. I wonder if there's much point in getting too specific without a more reliable date range for the enterprise derived from sound archaeological (or documentary) indicators.
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C14 dating

Postby Dave on Tue Jan 20, 2004 3:08 pm

gb wrote:
"1. If a tree falls down 100 years before it's used, how is this an accurate indicatation of the year of origin? If a 50 year-old ship, made of well-seasoned timbers, is broken up and used, how is this an accurate indication of the year of origin? "

C14 is not measuring a true age of an artifact. It is measuring the amount of time that has passed since the living matter has stopped incorporating atmospheric carbon into its tissues. Therefore, the C14 date is not the age of the plank or hammer handle, it is the date that tree died.

Also, there is quite a bit of uncertainty involved in the measurements themselves. I forget how much uncertainty was published with the OI C14 measurements, but its usually on the order of 100-200 years (eg an age reported as 300 years plus/minus 100).

gb also wrote:
"2. If it's possible to date from tree rings, or to calibrate the C14 scale (dendrochronology), then surely this implies that the rings of the tree must be of different ages. So, if a tree is 250 years old when cut down and used, wouldn't carbon dating of different parts of the tree give different dates? I assume this cannot be so, or C14 analysis of wood samples could never provide an accurate method of dating. "

I am not an expert in dendrochronology (my understanding is that it applies to C14 dating mainly as a calibration tool for relative recent samples), but regarding the question of different ages of wood from the same tree consider this:
when making most wooden items (a plank for example) a tree is cut length-wise both to maximize the length and (I think) improve the strength of the wood. A 2x4 would represent at most 10 years of wood. This amount of uncertainty is very small compared to the analytical uncertainty and would be considered negligible by chemists.

In short, C14 is pretty useful for dating organic items into general ages. I would probably not quibble over 100 years here or there based only on C14.

Cheers,

Dave
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carbon dating

Postby icrp on Wed Jan 21, 2004 2:27 pm

Dave,

As usual, an excellent and thoughtful post. I find the process of carbon dating straightforward (the only "dating" that ever was straightforward but that's another story...) but the devil is in the details.

Can you or anyone else put a brief list together of items that have been carbon-dated?

Thanks
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Carbon dating

Postby Tank03 on Wed Jan 21, 2004 3:21 pm

ICRP,

That is a great question and one that I have little to contribute to. I do know this.

Some wood taken from Borehole 10X, wood from Smith's Cove, has defonately bben done. I suspect there is more but I would be lying if I said it was done for sure. I have asked the question before and the answer was more convoluted than I hoped for.

I also know that the pieces of chain brought out of 10X was analysed by Stelco Canada, how (methods used), I don't know.
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