Archive for August 30, 2014

The Oklahoma Runestone

by Cyclone Covey, Ph.D.


Originally published in Ancient American Magazine March/April 1994.


In the 1830’s, soon after the forced removal of aboriginal tribes into Indian Territory, Chocktaw hunters roaming vast, vacant, forested hills came upon the mammoth runestone in an idyllic vale of Poteau, Mt.  It had stood immemorially hidden in its remote ravine.  Gloria Farley first hiked to it in 1928 when no path yet led the two miles uphill from her home town, Heavener, Oklahoma.  A precocious little girl, she realized c.1930 that the large characters carved on “Indian Rock” were runes; but not until 1951, on moving back to Heavener from Ohio, did she clear away the gray lichen and begin serious study of this “billboard” (her word).  She measured the protective semicircle of overhanging cliffs at 40′ high.  The huge stone below was an upright gray slab of very hard, fine-grained Pennsylvania Savanna sandstone 12′ high, 10′ wide, and 16″ thick.  Geologists told her it once projected the cliff above and fell to its present position in a primeval time.  The large runes, 6 1/2 to 9 1/2″ high, stretch horizontally nearly two yards (69″) across the west face 3/4 to 1″ wide.  Tool marks, 1/4 to 3/16″ deep, were detectable but the sharp-chiseled edges had weather-rounded despite the natural shelter (Westville Symposium Papers #17).


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Traditional Relationships Of The Southeastern Indians

by Joseph B. Mahan, Executive Director, Westville Village, Lumpkin, Georgia


Originally published in The Midwestern Epigraphic Society Journal


[Editor’s Note:  The first Westville Symposium, the parent of ISAC, was held in 1972.  The Dr. Joseph Mahan, DFMES story can be found documented in MEJ 9, 1995.]


The Yuchi have been among the least known of any of the Southeastern Tribes.  Their history prior to the beginning of the Eighteenth century and their relationship to other tribes, either present or past, have been details which were most obscure in the existing literature.

The supposition has been general that the Yuchi themselves have retained no information on the earlier periods of their own history.  This supposition has been perpetuated and strengthened by being repeatedly stated or implied by successive scholars in the studies of Southeast Indians.

The present author has found, in fact, that until well into this century, Yuchi tribal leaders purposely preserved a vast store of traditional history and religious ceremonialism which they taught by rote to selected members of each succeeding generation.  Although the changing social and economic conditions under which the present Yuchi live have made this teaching more difficult.  Much knowledge of their past still exists among them.  This included the speaking of their ancestral language by many of the living Yuchi.  This language is unrelated to any other and has long been classified as the single existing branch of a distinct linguistic family.

Much of the traditional tribal knowledge was retained through the encouragement and under the tutorage of two chiefs (father and son) who, combined, held the hereditary position for a period of ninety years (1867-1957).  These two men, Samuel W. Brown and Samuel W. Brown Jr., were unceasing in their efforts to maintain tribal unity and to perpetuate their ancestral religion.

Because of his position and his unique role in his tribe, a statement recorded on tape by Samuel W. Brown, Jr. purposely for me in July, 1957, has particular significance.  This statement of the history of his people has proved to contain the key to tribal identifications and relationships which have heretofore eluded students of Indian history.  Brown’s statement has been thoroughly tested against all available data concerning the peoples he mentions.  It has been found to be in agreement with known facts and to supplement these facts extensively.  Only through detailed investigation of the Southeastern Indians were some of the names discovered which Chief Brown used so familiarly. It was then that the full significance of his statement became evident.

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The Voree Plates

by Rick Hurd,

“*REVELATION. The Angel of the Lord came unto me, James, on the first day of September, in the year eighteen hundred and fortyfive, and the light Shined about him above the brightness of the sun, and he showed unto me the plates of the sealed record, and he gave into my hands the Urim and Thummin. And out of the light came the voice of the Lord, saying, My servant James, in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thee, because I have tried thee, and found thee faithful. Behold, my servant James, I am about to bless thee with a great blessing, which shall be to those who love me, an immutable testimony; to those who know me not, a stumbling block; but to those who have known me, and have turned their hearts from me, a rock of offence. Go to the place which the Angel of the presence shall show thee, and there shalt thou dig for the record of my people, in whose possession thou dwellest. Take with thee faithful witnesses; for in evil will the unfaithful speak of thee; but the faithful and true shall know that they are liars, and shall not stumble for their words.

And while I was yet in the spirit, the Angel of the Lord took me away to the hill in the east of Walworth, against White River, in Voree, and there he showed unto me the record buried under an oak tree as large as the body of a large man; it was enclosed in an earthen casement, and buried in the ground as deep as to a man’s waist, and I beheld it as a man can see a light stone in clear water; for I saw it by Urim and Thummin.”

“TESTIMONY. On the thirteenth day of September, 1845, we, Aaron Smith, Jirah B. Wheelan, James M. Van Nostrand, and Edward Whitcomb, assembled at the call of James J. Strang, who is by us and many others approved as a Prophet and Seer of God. He proceeded to inform us that it had been revealed to him in a vision that an account of an ancient people was buried in a hill south of White River bridge, near the east line of Walworth County; and leading us to an oak tree, about one foot in diameter, told us that we would find it enclosed in a case of rude earthen ware under that tree, at the depth of about three feet; requested us to dig it up, and charged us to so examine the ground that we should know we were not imposed upon, and that it had not been buried there since the tree grew. The tree was surrounded by a sward of deeply rooted grass, such as is usually found in the openings; and upon the most critical examination, we could not discover any indication that it had ever been cut through or disturbed.

We then dug up the tree, and continued to dig to the depth of about three feet, where we found a case of slightly baked clay, containing three plates of brass. The case was found imbedded in indurated clay, so closely fitting it that it broke in taking out; and the earth below the soil was so hard as to be dug with difficulty, even with a pickaxe. Over the case was found a flat stone, about one foot wide each way, and three inches thick, which appeared to have undergone the action of fire, and fell in pieces after a few minutes exposure to the air. The digging extended in the clay about eighteen inches, there being two kinds of earth of different colour and appearance above it.

We examined as we dug all the way with the utmost care, and we say, with the utmost confidence, that no part of the earth through which we dug exhibited any sign or indication that it had been moved or disturbed at any time previous. The roots of the tree struck down on every side very closely, extending below the case, and closely interwoven with roots from other trees. None of them had been broken or cut away. No clay is found in the country like that of which the case is made.

In fine, we found an alphabetick and pictorial record, carefully cased up, buried deep in the earth, covered with a flat stone, with an oak tree one foot in diameter, growing over it, with every evidence that the senses can give that it has lain there as long as that tree has been growing. Strang took no part in the digging, but kept entirely away, from before the first blow was struck till after the plates were taken out of the case; and the sole inducement to our digging was our faith in his statement as a Prophet of the Lord, that a record would thus and there be found.

Aaron Smith, Jira B. Wheelan, J. M. Van Nostrand, Edward Whitcomb.” (1856 edition of the Book of the Law of the Lord pp. 250-252)

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The Serpent Effigy of Lyons, Kansas

by, John J White, III, Beverley H. Moseley, Jr, and Cyclone Covey

Originally published in the Midwestern Epigraphic Society Newsletter, Volume 18, Number 2.


A leading objective of the MES founders was the reporting of new information and interpretations that would lead to a better understanding of Ohio, Ohio River Valley, and Midwestern ancient history.  Thus it should come as no surprise that we view the Great Serpent Mound of Adams County, Ohio as an extremely significant artifact left by the higher cultures of ancient Ohio.  The serpent Mound could be related to the so-called Mound Builder culture, but the exact interpretation eludes us to date.  Corroborative news and interpretation related to our ideas on this subject are thus very exciting.

The figure in the next column is a conceptual replica of the Adams County Serpent, especially with regard to the presence of an egg-shaped object.  This serpent is a 160-foot long manmade soil-depression (intaglio excavation) discovered near Lyons, Kansas (central) in 1917 but only investigated archaeologically after 1980 by Clark Mallam of Luther College in Iowa.  We learned of the Lyons Serpent via an interpretive study made by Joseph Hickey and Charles Webb of Emporia State University.

Mallam trenched for artifacts with little result.  He then made sightings on three nearby earthen mounds called the Quiviran Council Circles.  The alignments were so favorable for equinox observation that Mallam concluded that the ovoid object in the Lyons Serpent’s jaws represented the sun.  It is claimed that this idea is a common metaphor among many Native American groups!  It is suggested that on the longest day of the year, the serpent literally swallowed the sun thereby threatening all life with extinction.  But, of course, nothing visual really happens!

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A Tradition of Giants: More Questions Than Answers

Originally published in Ancient American magazine.

by Ross Hamilton

Long ago in central North America, there was a great civil war. It was a war owning many battles, and had an incredible loss of life. It wasn’t the North versus the South, although it sponsored a confederacy against a union. It probably spanned the geography of a number of present day states—commencing from the area that is the boundary line of the ancient Mississippi. There, the great tribes of the west encountered for the first time the great nation of the east, and the resultant history—or shall we say prehistory, ultimately shaped the pre-Columbian world far more than can ever be understood. Our archaeological record holds relatively limited data of this time period, much less this proposed event, and thus we are dependent to some extent on the invaluable resource of Native American transmission.

Our related science’s present understanding of the pre-Adena (Archaic) inhabitants of the greater Ohio River valley is yet somewhat sketchy, what to say of the Adena themselves. However, many pieces to the puzzle are now thought to be in place. The timeline for the Adena begins around 1000 B.C.E. according to the carbon dating of Dragoo and others. The Archaic populace is not believed to have constructed mounds in the Ohio Valley region, although this is not known for certain due to several factors, including widespread destruction of the earthworks, without content cataloging, over the last 250 years. Most understanding is based upon the dating and trait-grouping of materials found in the diminished number of mounds and village sites yet existing after a formal discipline in archaeology and anthropology finally took over excavation and detailed record keeping.

There are Archaic era mounded structures, often intricate and complex, in the deep southern U.S., including Watson Brake, Poverty Point, Fig Island, and Sapelo. For this reason, theories have been put forth that the moundbuilding tradition came into the Ohio Valley around the time of the Adena from the southern Mississippi, thereby tentatively associating the Adena people with older cultures from the south. In one way of looking at this idea, it supposes that moundbuilding was a phenomenon peculiar to only one geographical source, necessarily having been passed on. Unlike the Adena mounds however, the more ancient southern earthworks did not poignantly suggest a very specialized “cult of the dead.”

By their skeletal remains in the earlier studies, the pre-Adena people were known to have had slender or thin bodies, and been “long-headed,” with “narrow” skulls (dolichocranic), i.e., having a breadth of skull small in proportion to length from front to back. The Adena people weren’t physically akin to these Archaic people. Generally the Adena had more massive bone structure, according to these same studies. The pre-eminent theory of Adena origin at the time was that their ancestry had come from Mexico or even further south. However, the Adena body bone structure type was unusually difficult to trace with surety south of the Rio Grande—where another distinguishing Adena-resonant trait was found practiced from earlier times. That practice was “cradleboard” head deformation.

Head of a statue found near the Ohio River
Outline of the head of a statue of a woman found in the bottom land of the Ohio River near Tolu, KY.

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Holocaust of Giants: The Great Smithsonian Cover-up


First published in Ancient American magazine and later in Nexus magazine.

by Ross Hamilton

Noted Native American author and professor of law emeritus, Vine Deloria, writes in a personal communication:

It’s probably better that so few of the ruins and remains were tied in with the Smithsonian because they give good reason to believe the ending of the Indiana Jones movie—a great warehouse where the real secrets of earth history are buried.

Modern day archaeology and anthropology have nearly sealed the door on our imaginations, broadly interpreting the North American past as devoid of anything unusual in the way of great cultures characterized by a people of unusual demeanor. The great interloper of ancient burial grounds, the nineteenth century Smithsonian Institution, created a one-way portal, through which uncounted bones have been spirited. This door and the contents of its vault are virtually sealed off to any but government officials. Among these bones may lay answers not even sought by these officials concerning the deep past.

The first hint we had about the possible existence of an actual race of tall, strong, and intellectually sophisticated people, was in researching old township and county records. Many of these were quoting from old diaries and letters that were combined, for posterity, in the 1800s from diaries going back to the 1700s. Says Vine in this understanding:

Some of these old county and regional history books contain real gems because the people were not subjected to a rigid indoctrination about evolution and were astonished about what they found and honestly reported it.

County Histories
The title pages of the early county and pioneer history books often included phrases like “CAREFULLY WRITTEN AND COMPILED” and “LEST WE FORGET.”

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Jimmies Pipe

by, Jim Burchell


John Young of London, Kentucky found this pipe under a rock shelter Jimmies pipe 002in Clay County, Kentucky.  He brought it to me for examination.  The pipe was broken but I was able to piece it together and trace the writings that were on it.Jimmies pipe 009There were two Ogam scrips on it.  The bottom of the pipe had Ogam so worn that I had to use aluminum foil to get an impression. Jimmies pipe 005

The writing on the side appears to be a monogram composed of signs of the Levantine Iberian alphabet. It is obvious that this pipe is of great age.



For more information:

(Thank you Jim Leslie and M.E.S. for these links)