Oak Island 7:18: End is Near (sort of)

DATELINE: Last Drill of the Year

 Laird Nivens & Marty Lagina.

It almost sounds like Bible verse. We are up to and surpassing season 7 and episode 18, where there is now a connection between the swamp and the Money Pit. Was there any doubt? You never known on Curse of Oak Island.

Now, is there any proof?

Dr. Ian Spooner brought another colleague to the swamp, where they agreed that the mercury present is odd and not natural. They are of the mind that the swamp was used as a blue clay mine. Three hundred years ago some workers, pre-Mayflower, were seeking blue clay, which has a density and even religious significance in some societies.

The largest drills so far are arriving from ROC excavators to do a final month of burrowing into the Money Pit. No expense is being spared, but will they also endanger themselves? We wouldn’t be surprised as the obsession seems to be growing as fast as the budget for the series.

You know common sense has gone when Rick Lagina takes a sip of brackish water to determine if it is salty in the swamp.

The other new evidence is at the ruins of the home of Samuel Ball, the former slave who became the richest man in Nova Scotia in the early 1800s. Speculation that he found treasure has centered on him for decades, and now ground penetrating radar finds walls and chambers under his former home. But permits are needed for excavation: which means next year.

Dan Henskee and Dave Blankenship push the honorary button to dig into the Money Pit with new heavy-duty equipment. How much can be retrieved before the season ends is the question. After all, you can see the heavier coats on the searchers. We are coming to the end of another year of endless clues and constant teasings.

 

 

 

Oak Island: Time Running Out

DATELINE: Reckless 7th Season?

 Mercury Dunk?

Dr. Ian Spooner shows up to assess another breakthrough in the swamp. Can it be some kind of megalithic creation that is manmade? Bigger is more desperate on Curse of Oak Island as we wrap up another season of empty-handed potential.

Big trouble is coming because the coffer dam must be removed within weeks, with the permit running out after one year. Not only must the dam be removed, but the area must be made to look as it was. Why can there be no extension of the permit? There is no explanation. Did they even try?

Finding a potential tunnel to the Money Pit means that Rick Lagina will go down on a bucket into the hole. If this seems a bit extreme and likely to be dangerous, we must recall that this is a cliff-hanger series with death-defying (or something akin to it).

Another lead artifact now has a strong mercury component, which suggests that Francis Bacon may have done some experiments on the manuscripts of Shakespeare. The lead also can be traced to the Middle East. More inconclusive but tantalizing hints. We are hooked again and reeled in.

Another curious discovery occurs at the home of original finder Daniel McGinnis whose root cellar was a secret tunnel, leading to something hidden. Because permits will not allow them to dig deeper, whatever treasure buried under the house cannot be excavated for a year in all likelihood.

If you want frustrations, they are everywhere this week. They have found more 1760s tunnels and shafts. Rick Lagina plans to go down in the bucket. They have to insist he come out before it caved in on him (which likely is his preference). Of course, Marty Lagina must put on a harness and goes down.

So they put a camera on the long-range excavator. Even that is inconclusive: we feel like we are no closer to knowing anything.

With time running out for this season, it becomes clear that a new sequel series is in the ready with the Lagina boys: it’s called, naturally, Beyond Oak Island.

Thee’s a sucker born on Oak Island every minute.

 

 

 

Water, Water Everywhere on Oak Island

DATELINE:  Still Waters Not Found

We have arrived at the 16thweek of the 7thseason. It’s clear they will find nothing this season.

But the coconut hair indicates that they are near the booby trap of flood tunnel. Out of the muck, Gary Drayton starts to find a couple of spikes from the 1700s. These were original people who were digging to bury something.

Also, seismic explosions from earlier this season and used to produce sound waves have created a map of voids under the surface of 300 feet. However, they find a linear tunnel about sixty feet near the Money Pit from the Cove.

Their excavation with a huge new machine obviously finds a flood tunnel. Of course, the cavalier digging means a cave-in, having unstabilized the area. It’s almost like they sabotage their own hunt to extend the season till next year.

So, they move to the eye of the swamp where they believe the Templars may have hidden something.

But Gary wants to go to the spots where Hurricane Dorian stripped away the ground cover. His hunch proves right yet again. So, once again, Rick and Gary find some piece of lead that may have etchings on it.

But the swamp has large deposits of blue clay, an water sealant that is there to protect and make watertight something underneath.

The highpoint of the show is Dr. Christa Brosseau’s return to analyze the spikes Gary found. Alex brings them to her for an elemental analysis. She delivers the good news that the iron has phosphorus, meaning it is 18thcentury. She thinks they were from Britain or Northern Europe.

We are delighted that Drs. Spooner and Broseeau are now the voice of academic insight on Oak Island.

Invaders from Skinwalker Ranch

DATELINE: Blue on Blue 

Skeptical Star as Dr. Hyneck

 If Project Blue Book knows what it needs to do to be renewed, it is playing a cagey game as we wound down for the season 2.

The latest episode seems to be a throwback to the old chestnut classic movie Invaders from Mars wherein a young boy is terrified by space aliens living under his rustic home. His parents are soon part of the delusional dream. You may recall the old William Cameron Menzies classic movie.

Then, we discover that the Utah setting for the family homestead is related to a new series that will replace Project Blue Bookat the end of the month!

If you watch the History Channel previews, you already know that the timeslot will be taken over, not by zombies, but by a close second:  The Secrets of Skinwalker Ranch, produced by the same folks who give you The Curse of Oak Island.

And a mysterious millionaire has purchased the property and is now opening it up for Dr. Travis Taylor. Gee, how do we figure out Marty Lagina is in the picture? Perhaps when he son Alex is part of the new show’s cast.

Yes, Dr. Hyneck and Captain Quinn are learning that the paranormal ranch is where Navajo saw shapeshifter and spirits. Nice segue, if not too obvious.

Yes, the dream sequence is caused by some neural gas being pumped in as part of an Air Force experiment. Well, at least they were not feeding the kid LSD, like the CIA.

On top of that, our two comic generals have discovered Captain Quinn’s Soviet agent girlfriend and they are immediately suspicious whereas Mike Malarkey’s pipsqueak officer is in the dark.

Surely Templar on Oak Island

DATELINE: Coconut Fiber 

Ship in Swamp.

If you are among the faithful, your belief in Templars, treasures, and miraculous artifacts, may be about to be rewarded big time.

The show itself has begun to ask if the search is worth it. Yet, there is a major structure or more on the island. Both the Money Pit and Smith’s Cove are showing to be rich in evidence. The thinking finally is that the ocean was much lower at Smith’s Cove that made it easier to build giant structures that had no nails or fasteners.

The eye of the swamp may be pivotal. They think a major discovery of a Spanish galleon may be their reward. The possible ship is about 15 feet at the shallow end and over 50 feet at the other end. Ground penetrating radar presented an image.

Marty arranges to dig a major shaft into the Money Pit where wood has been found that is from 1620. They can do a safe dig eight feet across and 120 feet deep.

On another front, the Scottish immigrants came to Oak Island and wanted to use a prebuilt system to hide their Templar artifacts. They may have created the newer Money Pit. These Templars, aka Knights Baronet, were freemasons. In fact, many of the searchers were actually Masons.

It may be the original discoverers of the Money Pit were actually came with some knowledge of treasure. They knew what was there and why they went down over 30 feet.

Even more shocking, they discover an opening to a tunnel under the foundation of early resident Daniel McGinnis. Direct descendants several years earlier claimed there were treasure chests the original teen treasure hunter located. Back at Smith Cove, Gary Drayton jokes about a tunnel—but then they find one. It contains more coconut fiber—or something else! If that material is fiber, it could mean it is near the booby traps.

They return again to Carmen Legge, now a regular deliverer of amazing findings. He identifies this pipe pole as a boat hook.

However, the biggest news of the night has to do with the mystery fiber discovered in a strange new place. It turns out to be a shock from Dr. Ian Spooner: it’s not human hair. More coconut fiber indicates a flood tunnel. It was a filter and original work for the placement of treasure.

Oak Island Box Out

DATELINE: Wait till Next Year

 Inexplicable Log Boxes

They now have evidence from science that material buried in the cove dates back to 1620, around the time of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock. With the end of the season rapidly approaching, The Curse of Oak Islandhas more mysteries and fewer answers.

The original Money Pit shaft has wood dating back way before the original searching. How many people were on an uninhabited island doing this engineering? And why? We may have to tune into the UnXplained to hear what Shatner states.

At Smith’s Cove they have found a bizarre wooden log box. It was either meant to be part of the flood booby traps or to circumvent them. Their digging nearly destroys the box. It collapses. However, it was not tied to the drain systems.

They are off to the next spot: the swamp. There, Gary Drayton finds another hinge or bracket. It was a match to one found last year that blacksmith expert said was 400 years old.

When Alex and Marty show up at an area between the cove and Money Pit, it looks like a war zone of a no man’s land from the Western Front excavation. That is how much work has been done on this small island. Millions have been poured into this money pit.

They never expected to find another tunnel, well-constructed and with no historical record. They had discovered another massive building project on a small island. It leads to conclusions that define historical mysteries of Arks of the Covenant and Holy Grails.

Carmen Legge joined in to identify various metals that he placed around the mid-1700s.  Who was making those tunnels?  He found it amazing that tunnel tools were in a swamp (or maybe it was not a swamp). He finds the strapping is from a sailing ship. He felt it was a ship from as early as 1710. Gary thought it was from a pirate ship, and Legge said the metal was in a big fire.

We are realizing that another season will be required. They are nowhere close to revealing the truth. But it may be worth the wait.

Shatner on Oak Island: Beam Him Down

DATELINE: UnXplained Star Visits 

 Shatner at Oak Island!

Well, if you travel across the universe and end up with the UnXplained,you will surely make a pit stop to visit with the Lagina Brothers on Oak Island. William Shatner, not slowing down at 90, is there to see what all the commotion is about.  One fan called this appearance “epical.”

He is there to interview each of the key people about what is going on: he is intrigued, but the people in the so-called War Room are in awe of Captain Kirk in their midst.

There will be no revelations, but there are insights into the past of key people like Gary Drayton who is not used to turning over the findings to the Nova Scotia government. He has a history of being a modern pirate: keeping the spoils.

Yet, Shatner is cynical enough to tell them that the metal of the lead cross, apparent Templar, that was dropped not 600 years ago, mined back then.

They show him the swages that likely made the massive structures of 1741 that indicate that no Europeans were not supposed there—but really were.

Shatner tries hard to find the logic of the mystery of Oak Island, but he needs the late Leonard Nimoy’s Spock to give him the explanation. Marty Lagina tries to play the role of the man explaining the UnXplained.

It will be interesting to see how the same interviews come out on the other History Channel show.

Shatner drives at the key question, what is the curse! But he believes that the Shakespearean manuscripts sounds most plausible, hidden by Sir Francis Bacon.

Captain Kirk digs hard at the notions of mythology and magic, and for that we give him much credit as a journalist. He is intrigued by their notion that the latest technology always renews interest in solving the mystery.

Tractor and big equipment operator Billy Gearhardt is quite eloquent in answering. His new found fans will be thrilled that he stands up to Captain Kirk in this cross-pollination of History channel hit shows.

 

 

Slow but Steady on Oak Island

DATELINE: What has We Got Here?

Big Billy & Gary

You may wonder how slowly they can go to keep us dangling. Whether it is Rick digging up the alleged 90ft stone that was the original evidence found in the Money Pit with hieroglyphic instructions.

We are becoming unsure whether the shows are in any order that makes sense. We seem to be repeating so many searches that we see stuff brought to the island for reasons unknown. We expect the Men in Black to show up next. We can’t keep our conspiracy theories from overlapping. We are beginning to feel like we are watching Geiko commercials calling themselves “sequels.” We have more smoking guns than you can shoot in 200 years.

Dr. Ian Spooner seems to be taking a second role to Gary Drayton. Not to be outdone, Billy Gearhardt has become another big star of the show—and now he’s working with Drayton.

Gary Drayton cannot be kept down forever. He keeps finding evidence that makes him the man of the moment. He is either a good luck piece or a brilliant investigator. He is only more important than Marty Lagina—but moneybags will always take position number one.

Back at the Money Pit, they find undisturbed soil, meaning they have missed the target.

Laird Niven, Billy Gearhardt and Rick Lagina move on to visit a spot where the famous 90-foot stone may be buried. There was nothing.

Yet, ever vigilant Gary finds an ancient iron pickaxe near the eye of the swamp. He speculates that they have found tunneling tools near the eye.

Now wood is found 100 years older than anything else: 1600s, confirming Dr. Spooner’s view that activity occurred around 1680.

If there is big news, it is that William Shatner will be arriving in two weeks at Oak Island. Beam us down.

Oak Island’s Swampy Roots

DATELINE: Swamp Thing

Another discovery now puts the wood dated at 1741, decades before the original slipway and when no one was actuallyliving on Oak Island.

 

No loading docks were needed unles they were unloading and burying something on the island.

 

In 1741 a French fort may have moved a massive gold reserve to Oak Island to keep out of British hands.

 

A visit to Fort Louisbourg 300 miles from Oak Island shows tunnels, walls, and structures built by French engineers. The same work there and Oak Island matches. A 97 ship fleet, led by a descendant of the Knights Templar, went on a mission to Oak Island, but the entire operation failed. Nothing was recovered.

 

Gary Drayton goes out and finds a musketball, which confirms that military people were on the island. They also take in the beach exposed by Dorian. He finds a rigging axe that could be from the early 1700s.

 

Rick Lagina and Doug Crowell show up at the fort and are stunned by the size and complexity of the military outpost. They are particularly interested in the tunnel system. They find a stone drain system similar to the water flow at Smith’s Cove. It’s a French drain.

 

They also find counter-mines, networks of booby traps.

 

There are images of a cross shaped tunnel that mirrors Nolan cross.

 

The entire crew shows up at the swamp to find some unusual rock formations, manmade. The only absentee is Marty Lagina, and son Alex stands in.

 

Dr. Ian Spooner assesses it. He thinks it is a manipulated work area to off-load and hide evidence.

Hurricane Dorian: Not Quite Oak Island Waterloo

DATELINE: It Could be Worse

As we noted months ago, the direct hit on Oak Island by a large category 5 hurricane would effectively mean the end of the season.

As Marty Lagina opined with true fright, something bad was about to happen. They had just begun excavating the swamp with expensive equipment. They almost immediately found wooden carved pegs. These were similar to the ones found by Fred Nolan decades ago in the eenter of the swamp. It proved that the swamp was created before 1700.

By whom and why?

And now too the work at Smith’s Cove with the copper dam was also about to face flooding waters. The ocean levels have raised in centuries—and were now were going to reclaim the secrets.

Gary Drayton found some spikes that have been there for hundreds of years. Yet, Gary is disappointed that he did not find any coins or spoils from those builders. They were too too careful.

Digging for the Money Pit,  they found a tunnel that fed water into the treasure shaft. They feel they were near the original work spot and could be at the actual treasure site. It could all be for naught.

What this indicates is that there are two separate and distinct mysteries on the island. Two separate groups may have put treasure here in this remote and perfect spot.

They are discovering why so many previous hunters went broke in this endeavor. Millions of dollars could be wasted by these efforts and a natural disaster stopping them. Axe cut wood at 110 feet shows something completely new. It is darker and older than anything ever seen.

We are seeing Waterloo unfold before our hopes as historical discoveries emerge. Gary and Alex Lagina visit blacksmith historian Carmen Legg who gives them a date of 1600s for Gary’s latest findings.

Meanwhile, everything must be locked down in case winds over 150 mph hit within hours and with flooding. We were not shown the crew evacuating the island, which would have been real drama. Instead, we come back a day later–and a treasure short.

If you wonder about the notion of a curse at Oak Island, it is now unfolding with Dorian. The manmade causeway was severely damaged. Swamp needs to be re-drained. Yet, it’s not as bad as feared.

Oak Island Turns Its Eye to Gary Drayton

 DATELINE: Oak Island Trifecta

  Lead Tag!

If you thought Gary Drayton changed the show since he came into his own, he made yet again another major discovery—as big as his Templar Cross of three years earlier. Curse of Oak Island is on the verge of a treasure trove of winning: a trifecta.

His insights, his luck, and his attitude, makes him a compelling figure. Gary went a long way to make Oak Island’s series the so-called #1 show on cable.

It is Gary who finds “bloody silver,” what the treasure hunters have always wanted: the most brazen evidence yet.

Three sites simultaneous digs meant to receive permits and going into the swamp foremost to dredge out water to show a 1200 AD structure.

They also now seem to have found the original Money Pit that was flooded first in 1805. That was not a factor in the 21stcentury where there is an arrogance that the flood tunnels can be shut off.

What this all means is that there could be three treasures on Oak island. It gels with the theories that different people, at different times, came to the island to do major excavation to hide mysterious historical treasures.

Metallurgist Dr. Christa Brousseau tells them that the tag is not silver, but it is impure lead. It was deliberately created possibly a thousand years ago.

Over in the swamp Dr. Ian Spooner is back, which is a sign that he is on hand for anticipation of something big.

Fred Nolan’s son believes they are looking at vindication of the surveyor’s lifelong hope.

Another metallurgist reveals in the War Room that this tag of impure lead is from an area well-known to the Knights Templar and may even be of similar origin.

The big payoff may be, however, undermined by Hurricane Dorian that is on the horizon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Short Hiatus Teases Us with New Insights!

DATELINE: More Data

 Poussin Painting

Curse of Oak Islandhas returned with big insights.

Has another discovery been made? They have found a structure that could be a booby trap design to send water into flood tunnels on the island. No historical record exists, but how did people go out under ten feet of water to build floodgate?

Creating a bump out has revealed a possible engineering marvel. Of course, Marty Lagina and son Alex are not there for this important stuff, which likely means they are out filming the Civil War Gold series in Michigan. Operative term is “away on business.”

All the second bananas are here for this one: Laird, Crowall, Henskee, Gary Drayton, Begley, Bill Gearhardt, Terry Matheson. Of course, Gary immediately finds cribbing spikes from the 1600 or 1700s. You may notice that Dave Blankenship, Dan’s son, has been further marginalized.

Another “expert” on French art shows up to show that secrets of Oak Island were recorded in oils during 17thcentury.

A French art expert claims a French painter named Poussin painted a map in his painting to show where the Ark of the Covenant could be buried on Oak Island. Why did he have secret knowledge? Guesswork connections.

We also go back into the swamp this week with Tony Sampson, the diver who has been on many times. They are looking for newer anomalies using GPR. It’s suddenly cold in the swamp and they are heavily insulated. They are looking for the point overlaid in the French painting.

Permits again are going to be required.

They also joke that Alex is going to have to get his hands dirty in Smith’s Cove. Every five minutes is a new most important discovery yet.

The word of the show –and day—is dendrochronology, or dating by tree rings. We are now in the exact time of 1795.

Bend in Smith’s Cove at Oak Island

DATELINE: New Discovery!

 What is it?

Two searches seem to be reaping rewards for the treasure hunters on Curse of Oak Island as the seventh episode of the seventh season airs. Another search is, as usual, highly speculative and a tease.

We finally receive word after a year that the stone located at a former bookstore from 1919 and thought to be the notorious 90foot stone with hieroglyphs written on it, was some kind of replica.

Once again, interesting info is simply withheld as a story fades away. Now Rick Lagina reveals there was nothing on that bookstore stone found in the old basement.

However, the family that owned the bookstore may have moved it to their ancestral home in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. There, buried under a rhododendron bush could be the stone. Why? No one can say, but permits will be gathered to dig.

Back on the island, there is a shortage of appearances by Marty and Alex Lagina. So, Rick has recruited his other nephew Peter Fornetti and Billy Gerhardt to do some travel and research (for no reason except to highlight their appearances).

On the west side of the island, usually not explored, Gary Drayton and Jack Begley start to locate what seems to be an ancient wharf. Spikes, pins, and nails, indicate a structure from pre-1795 to unload or to repair ships was there.

At Smith’s Cove, the new 50 foot bump-out instantly reveals some kind of ancient box of logs (and tar paper) that predates any  record. It is under 10 feet of water usually, but the area may have been flooded since the oceans have risen in the past few hundred years.

It could be a booby trap flood tunnel, or something else. It is intriguing and indicates a growing number of historical possibilities. Something is indeed afoot.

Big Dig and Little Dig on Oak Island

DATELINE: Waiting for Results Again

  Teammates!

Shaft #9 was originally dug in 1865 as a means to divert flood tunnel booby traps. It is a big job requiring the big man Billy. This lost shaft was given up when the group only decades after finding the Money Pit ran out of money. So, we have additional and new background on Curse of Oak Island.

It’s hard to believe they only now mention “The Highlands,” after five years of episodes.

This episode provides contrasts with the smaller discoveries of Gary Drayton, teamed with Peter Fornetti and Alex Lagina.  Fornetti is no longer the callow teenager of five years ago and now provides muscle for Gary Drayton’s searches. He is working on piles of dirt that render iron work from Spanish galleons that may have been laden with the treasure of the Aztecs.

Though Marty Lagina once disparaged the notion of Montezuma’s gold bags, he is enthralled when journalist D’Arcy O’Connor tells him the same thing. He adds that the Spanish lost about 200 ships going back and forth with gold spoils. Some may have gone sideways to Oak Island to hide their stolen loot.

Gary Drayton, meanwhile, has found a cribbing spike, greatly corroded. He and Alex take it to Carmen Legge, the latest expert to become a big man on the side of the search. He dates the find as 1600s.

The other big project is setting off 18,000 dynamite charges to map the underground, down to levels of 300 feet. The tease is that results won’t show for several weeks.

Interestingly, Marty Lagina was mostly absent from this episode, showing up on Skype mostly, which hints that he is busy working on the sister series of Civil War Gold.The team of Gary and Alex likely will show up on that one too.

  Did We Do This Before on Oak Island?

 DATELINE: It Only Feels Like a Rerun

Why do they keep drilling down when it is hit or miss? The Curse of Oak Island never really answers their alleged waste of money. They finally decide to do seismic testing.

The War Room gang entertain another historian, but this one is labeled a real expert by Marty Lagina: he is Chip Reid from Anapolis. He tells them the French likely built “water batteries” on Oak Island, which explains what the structures found in Smith Cove.

Reid, author and highly respected, tells them that there were several treasures dropped off over hundreds of years because secret Tempar knowledge shared the hiding spots for future protected items.

They also have another circus ring going on with GPR seismic imaging over at the original digger and discoverer, Daniel McGinnis whose ruins of a house are a national treasure. It now appears he had a secret cellar under the foundation.

They also refer to Dan Henskee as the new dean of the past and his information leads them to another spot that could direct the search to the Money Pit.

Oddly enough Henskee does not appear in the show. It is troubling about his health or condition.

As usual too, it is Gary Drayton who finds more stuff: this time he locates a chisel on the McGinnis land that indicates the original teenager who found the Money Pit was mining on his land back in 1800.

This was a holding pattern episode to set us up for something bigger and more shocking.