Oak Island: Mountain or Ant Hill

Key to what?

 DATELINE: Too Much Unexplained

Every episode of Curse of Oak Island  begins with the onerous tones of Robert Clotwothy announcing it’s “the start of another day,” on Oak Island. It’s beginning to sound like “Once upon a time….”

But this show has our usual workers up early and doing their jobs: Peter Fornetti is the digger with Gary Drayton’s metal detecting. He always finds something interesting, and a trail of ox shoes from 1700 may be indicating a path to glory.

Diving is one of the big tasks this week, looking at some unusual features outside the swamp area. We always enjoy seeing the younger generation take charge—and this time, it is Alex Lagina, Peter Fornetti, and Jack Begley who go off with experienced diver Tony Sampson.

Another new research assistant, named Noah Currie, shows up without much fanfare or explanation with Gary Drayton. In one sequence Drayton finds what appears to be a giant, ancient key. Not much is made of this unusual finding.

The locate some wild metal detections, but are not allowed to dig to learn what it is. These restrictions tend to make the entire operation futile and senseless. The young researchers fail to make any point about some electromagnetic interference with their communication system.

Marty Lagina thinks putting fins on Gary Drayton might give better results.

The oddest thing of the episode was the discovery of the molehill:  there is a serpent mound on the island, a long twisty arrangement of stones and earth. Experts come by to contribute to the mystery, noting some serpent mounds can be 2000 years old and are ceremonial.

We wait till the re-appearance of Erin the cartographer next week.

Misalignment on Oak Island

Peter with Gary

DATELINE:  More Templar at Nolan’s Cross

In case you missed the pandemic, the series Curse of Oak Island is here to remind you that some of what they planned must be postponed till next year.  We wondered how the virus stops a Big Dig for the Money Pit.

Everyone danced around the big issue: obviously, Marty Lagina was not about to spend the big bucks on the Big Dig. But, they’ll never say that!

Since they will save the work on the Money Pit until next year, we know already they have a commitment for another season.

The other point made was Rick Lagina’s high praise for Tom Nolan, son of the crusty old man who was Dan Blankenship’s arch-nemesis for decades. Now, Tom is the active, productive, and cooperative new partner:  so long, Dave Blankenship.

The show immediately went for the gold: not treasure, but Gary Drayton who will find something every time. This time, for unknown reasons, Jack Begley is not there—and Peter Fornetti, the Lagina teen nephew, is the digger. He is affable and handles the spade well enough.

Almost immediately they come across a plethora of axe blades, buried for centuries. The archaeologist thinks they are several hundred years old. So, Gary has found an old camp.

They also call in some “theorists” from Europe, experts in Templars and math arcs. They have plotted a perfect menorah design on Oak Island that matches one in Jerusalem. They have whittled it down to two spots: Dig there. And, how a straight line goes from the Temple Mount, through the front door of the Palace of Versailles to Oak Island is quite amazing.

Right where they were told to look, there are man-manipulated dig sites going back 300 years, according to Dr. Ian Spooner’s sludge test.

They’re cooking now.

 

Oak Island Returns for S 8

Boys in Quarantine

DATELINE: Two Young Stars Out for Covid-19

 History Channel gave the new season 8  start of Curse of Oak Island one of their 2-hour special starts. That may be due to the fact that the principals were all trapped back in the USA, unable to reach Oak Island and the return of the hunt.

Yes, Covid-19 may have put a damper on the Lagina brothers and their participation in their own show. It became the “Remote Control” episode. Interestingly enough, none of the major stars (Marty, Alex, Rick, Jack Begley, or Craig Tester) could find their way out of Michigan. 

 Yet, the rest of the team assembled, most of them already on the Island and ready to work.  What does that tell us? Oh, yes, Gary Drayton too was not on the island, probably back home in Florida. But thanks to Zoom, the gang was all there for a teleconference.

Tom Nolan, who lives on the Island, admitted that cases were still somewhat rampant in Nova Scotia. And Blankenship was nowhere to be seen, after years of offering little to the show.

 A new face cropped up: archaeologist Dave MacInnes, 4G grandson of the young man who found the original Money Pit in 1798. Nice choice.

Inexplicable actions continued this season to start: nothing much changes on the show. The diver Mike Huntley suddenly is replaced by a big rig team to go looking for shiny gold objects in the C-1 tunnel where for years cameras spotted golden flashes.

 However, the new group featured butterflingers. The diver dropped the gold coin he dug out of the wall and it fell into the dark dregs. No one swore, or said any discouraging word. But, please.  That dive team did not return.

And their diver did not locate any of the gold seen on camera. It seemed almost inexcusable to drop the gold piece.

 

Finally, the Laginas were given permission to go to Canada under the proviso of a two-week quarantine.  Again, they were unnecessary for any success.

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.

Closer and Closer on Oak Island

DATELINE: Muddy Waters

 Magical 13 Branches?

For the seventh season, we feel more and more that it is just like many of the previous seasons—except results now are becoming more compelling.

Digging in the swamp has now proven a wooden shaft or structure that is man-made. By whom? That remains the constant conundrum.

Several other factors give us our déjà vu moment, again and again. This time they are talking about a bladder coffer dam to hold back sediment. It seems like the fourth season again.

Lagina Nephew Peter Fornetti remains omnipresent and omni-silent. But Alex Lagina is now speaking more forcefully, like a true star of the show.

If there is a striking element here, it is the rise of the second bananas over seven seasons: these individuals now sit regular at the big discussion table. They are integral to the search: Paul Troutman, Laird Nivens, Doug Crowell, Gary Drayton, and now the overweight big man of the bulldozers, Billy. Each has earned a following among fans.

However, the bobby dazzler himself, Gary Drayton continues to be the mover and shaker of all discoveries. This week is not unusual. He locates on the west side of the island some kind of brooch: a leaf on coils of rope. He contends it is quite old and was a rich soldier’s bauble, perhaps a uniform pin.

Once cleaned up, it proves to have 13 branches on the fern: but is more like the tree on George Washington’s flag. It is a Masonic and Templar symbol. It may have been the symbol of the American Revolution that wanted to bring Nova Scotia into the original colonies of the United States.

Carbon dating is more frequently turning up dates in the 1700s, often parallel to the American Revolution. It hints that Oak Island may have more to do with the Founding Fathers like Ben Franklin and ties to the French allies.