Was there ancient contact between the Old and New Worlds long before Columbus?
Many people believe there was.
My name is John Klingsheim and I am the author/publisher of California B.C. The Unknown Gold Rush
Welcome To My Website
Ever since Columbus and his successors discovered and explored the New World, people have found evidence that many ancient Old World cultures had already discovered the Americas and influenced their indigenous peoples. Evidence of these pre-Columbian visitors has been found from the east coast to the west coast of both the Americas.
The list of ancient Old World cultures that had a presence in the Americas at some time or other is lengthy. It includes the Egyptians, Phoenicians, Nubians, Iberians, Greeks, Romans, pre-Viking Norseman, and the Chinese. In 1961 Charles Boland published his book, "They All Discovered America"
The list of authors and scholars that have documented the evidence is equally lengthy. My purpose is not to document what others have already found, but to present what my son, myself, and a couple of others have found. There are going to be links to some great books and websites.
The Unknown Gold Rush
By John Klingsheim
Click to enlarge.
About the cover drawing
In 1790 the Spanish explorer Alejandro Malaspina made a voyage to the coast of the Pacific Northwest. The Malaspina expedition was the first Spanish expedition that was not strictly for commercial gain. Naturalists and artists were sent along to accurately document the flora and fauna of the places they visited.
On page 291 of "The American Heritage Book of Indians" are 2 drawings of Native Americans drawn by Tomas De Suria, who was a member of the expedition. They were drawn in 1791 and are drawings of 2 Tlingit Native Americans who inhabited the coast of the Alaskan panhandle. One is of a wavy haired, heavily bearded, Native American. He looks much more Caucasian with his beard and wavy hair, than he does a Native American. He wears an "oriental" style of hat which was common to the Pacific Northwest. Curiously, this was many years before the Chinese arrived in Alaska during the historical period. There is a fair bit of evidence the Chinese discovered the Americas around 500 A.D. The cover drawing is of the bearded individual. The cover was drawn by the author's uncle Thomas Boese, from a picture of the original. Thomas Boese was a wildlife artist.
The second drawing is of a Tlinget warrior wearing their traditional "body armor" and "visored helmet." The armor and helmet were made out of wooden rods lashed together. It looks very much like a wooden version of medieval European armor.
Just 17 years earlier, In 1774 the Spanish explorer, Juan Perez, made an expedition to the coast of British Columbia. Juan Perez was the very first European to explore the coast of the Pacific Northwest. Perez never actually landed on the coast of British Columbia. He did land on a number of islands off the coast. He named one island "Santa Margarita." It is now called "Langara Island." It is the northernmost of the Queen Charlotte Islands off the coast of British Columbia. Juan Perez' journal states that:
On the 20th of July, 1774, three canoes approached the ship while anchored off the coast of the island. (These were the Haida Indians) He said they were very handsome and had beards and mustaches like the Chinese.
The following day, 21 canoes full of Haida Indians approached the ship. On July 21 Juan Perez records that the Native Americans are all muscular and handsome. He further states they are white (blanco) skinned, and that the majority had blue (azure) eyes. He states that not only are they white skinned but, their overall appearance did not appear to be Native American. The men that had mustaches had beards as well. 2 of the 21 canoes were filled with nursing mothers, other women, and older children. They were all white (blanco). They also possessed iron bracelets. The history books tell us none of the Native Americans had iron.
Perez then sails south from there and next encounters the Nootka Indians of Vancouver Island. He describes the Nootka as being as blanco as the finest Spaniard.(pages 77-78 Juan Perez on the Northwest Coast, six documents of his expedition in 1774, translation and annotation by Herbert K. Beales, 1989)
So, the first European explorer of the Pacific Northwest, described the inhabitants as having predominantly blue eyes, white skin, and heavy beards! None of these are typical Native American physical characteristics and one has to wonder how they acquired them. Judging from the drawing and the descriptions, they appear to have ancient Norse and Chinese influences in their DNA. I won't go into it in depth but, there is much evidence that the pre-Viking Norsemen had colonies in North America. They may have discovered the northwest passage that had eluded our modern navigators for so long. The long elusive "Northwest Passage" was finally discovered in 1850. Fluctuations in the sea level make it sometimes more and sometimes less viable as a shipping lane. Historical evidence of bearded, white skinned, blue eyed native Americans on the Pacific coast certainly gives one pause.
California B.C. back cover text.
Photo Of Author Click to enlarge.
Were the ancient Egyptians in the Americas 3000 years ago? Did the Phoenicians and their descendants, the Carthaginians, routinely sail commercial voyages between the Old and New worlds? Were the ancient Norsemen in North America before the time of Christ? For the first 100 years or so of America's history, the intellectuals considered these to be viable possibilities. Since then, the subject of pre-Columbian contact with the Old World has become increasingly unpopular with mainstream scholars. For sometime now the subject has been labeled as "crackpot" archaeology.
Nevertheless, numerous recent discoveries in diverse branches of science, have led many respected scientists and scholars to conclude that there was indeed pre-Columbian contact with the Old World. Many scholars are now debating just how much contact there was. Spanish geneticists doing matrilineal DNA research on ancient Aztec remains have concluded that 2% of the population was of European descent. After much controversy, other scholars now agree the ancient Egyptians used two New World plants (tobacco and cocoa) in their embalming process.
Ever since the first colonists arrived in North America, people have found stone inscriptions that appear to be written in ancient Old World alphabets. These inscriptions are often associated with enigmatic stone structures that closely resemble those of the Old World. Many scholars and lay people are currently documenting many of these epigraphic discoveries. This book is the story of a man and his son who, with some help from a couple of other people, have found some two dozen stone inscriptions or petroglyphs near their home in California. They have discovered a number of stone structures that appear to have formed a religious temple complex. The inscriptions indicate that various Old World gods were worshiped at these temples. The inscriptions are carved in easily documented ancient Mediterranean alphabets. What alphabets are they? And what do the inscriptions say? Read the book." End of back cover text.
Correction to back cover text
The two New World plants, tobacco and coca were actually ingested by the ancient Egyptians and not used by them in their embalming process.
My odyssey on the seas of history began in 1995. I rent a house on a ranch, in a valley in Amador county California. Amador county is in the heart of the famous "Mother Lode" of the California gold rush. It is east of San Francisco, with it's western boundary located where the great central valley of California meets the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. It extends deep into the Sierras.
One day in the summer of 1995, I was at my neighbors house. My neighbor John Kegg and I were in the garage. I was talking with John while he worked on his Jeep.The back door of the garage opens onto the yard. While we were talking, I glanced out the open door and saw a large flat slab of limestone lying on the ground. It was square on three sides, except where a corner had broken off. It looked like a tombstone, and the top portion was covered with straight vertical grooves that had been carved into it. Some grooves were short and some were longer. All of the grooves were carved in the same direction.
The stone immediately reminded me of similar stones I had seen pictures of in a book called "America B.C." It was written by the late Harvard professor, Barry Fell. It is an amazing, albeit highly controversial book that claims ancient Old World cultures such as the Egyptians, had colonies in the Americas thousands of years ago. Mr. Fells' book documents many megalithic (large stone) structures which have been found in New England. These structures resemble the many megalithic structures built by the ancient Celts of Europe. Mr. fell also documents that these structures were used to determine the equinoxes and solstices. They were also used to regulate the builders' calendar.
Professor Fell includes tables of the ancient Mediterranean alphabets. One of these alphabets is one called Ogam or Ogham. Ogham was what some people call a "finger" alphabet. It consists of combinations of 1-5 parallel strokes set above, across or below a real, or imaginary stem line. When we write or type on a ruled page, the stem line is real. When we write or type on a blank page, the stem line is an imaginary stem line. Ogham was sometimes carved on stone with the stem line and sometimes not. It is taught that the ancient Celts created the Ogham alphabet. In fact there is much evidence that many ancient cultures used the alphabet.
I asked John not to think I was a nut and then I told him about "America B.C." I told him I had seen pictures of similar rocks in the book. John and I agreed it was an interesting rock but it could easily be some relic of the gold rush. We decided to look around the yard for more rocks. We didn't have far to look.
The house John rents is actually built upon a nicely constructed, smooth-faced dry-stone foundation. This is not surprising in and of itself. Many of the people involved in the gold rush were from places like New England that were well versed in stone masonry. In fact the Mother Lode has many remains of stone structures erected during and after the gold rush.
At John's house there is a nice stone staircase about four feet wide leading up to a small wooden house atop the foundation. To the left of the stone staircase is a large limestone boulder that has been curiously walled in on the two sides. The hillside is directly behind the boulder and forms a natural third wall. A narrow walled passageway leads from the front yard, back to the boulder. It appears that a natural spring seeps from beneath the boulder as the ground is wet and the owner has a plastic water pipe placed in a cavity beneath the boulder.
2 brief notes:
1. Natural springs were sacred in ancient times and temples were often built near them. The temple of Apollo at Delphi is one example. The importance of this will be explained later on.
2. If one has seen old wooden staircases, they probably noticed that the center of the stairs are worn giving the stair a bow shape. Obviously this is created by thousands of footsteps wearing down the wood. Well, stone staircases can also develop this bowed look, it just takes much much longer. The stone staircase in John's yard has a very obvious bow shape to it.
The gold rush was roughly 165 years ago. Destruction from fires was common during the gold rush. Many business, small shacks and miners cabins have come and gone in our valley. The old timers I have talked with believe these stone walls and structures were built around 1900 - 1930 because that is when a string of small houses existed at the base of that part of the valley. They understandably assume the stone works were constructed at the time the houses were built. But, we have found much evidence that the stone structures were built thousands of years ago and that the modern inhabitants simply build some simple small homes on top of the ruins. People have built their homes atop of ruins throughout history.
After looking around the yard we ended up at the stone staircase. Directly in front of the staircase are two large flagstones leading to it. See drawing following shortly. On the flagstone in front of the bottom stair we saw a deeply carved square that had been divided into four squares, by a vertical and a horizontal line carved through it. It is called a quadrapartite square.
Quadrapartite square. Click to enlarge.
I recognized this symbol and told John "I have seen this exact symbol in 'America B.C.' and it is supposed to be a Bronze and Iron Age Mediterranean sun symbol." Looking closer at the rock we noticed a long straight line carved from one corner of the square out to the edge of the stone at an angle.
John and I had both seen tombstones and buildings in the county that had writing on them. We agreed there was something different about the way this square had been carved. It had been formed by someone deeply "pecking" dots in the shape of the square, and then connecting the dots. The edges of the dots are very rounded and weathered and the surface of the rock has taken on a glassy, polished look. In the photograph there is dirt on the rock so one does not notice the glassy appearance. I chose to leave the dirt on the rock when I photographed it. Dirt in the lines of a petroglyph sometimes makes the lines easier to see.
When you carve the surface of a stone you find lighter stone beneath the surface. The surface of a stone has a patina on it from being exposed to the elements, and a carving is seen as being lighter because of all the freshly broken crystals beneath the surface. Over time the newly carved lines will take on a patina. The older a petroglyph is, the darker the patina in the lines will be. There is no difference in the appearance of the patina inside the lines of the square and the rest of the surface.This can be indicative of considerable antiquity.