Lake Winnipesaukee Mystery Stone; crafted by Native Americans or supernatural forces?
Discovered in 1872 buried close to Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire, the eponymous mystery stone is dark, smooth, egg-shaped, and about 10 centimeters (4 in) tall and 6.4 centimeters (2.5 in) wide. On its surface are a number of carved symbols and images, including a face, ears of corn, and a teepee, among other unknown images. Questions have emerged regarding the stone: Who made it? And what is it? One theory suggests that the stone may have been made by Native Americans to commemorate a peace treaty between two tribes. Other theories contend that the stone could be Celtic or Inuit in origin. The mystery was further complicated when researchers investigated two holes in the stone, one at the top and one at the bottom. These holes were drilled with a level of precision that seems inconsistent with the ability of premodern tools. This has led some to believe that the stone may be an elaborate hoax, while it has convinced others that the stone may be a “thunderstone” crafted by supernatural forces.
Only known example of large construction done by a hunter-gatherer society. Can you guess what purpose it served?
In Louisiana, there is an extensive complex of earthworks known as Poverty Point. The complex contains a series of mounds and ridges and was built by Native Americans sometime between 1700 and 1100 BC. What makes Poverty Point interesting is it’s the only known example of large construction done by a hunter-gatherer society. No one knows exactly what purpose Poverty Point served. Some archaeologists suggest that the site was used for periodic ceremonial events, while others contend it was a permanent settlement. Similarly, we don’t know which culture built it, as there have been few artifacts found to link to any specific people.
How could anything remain unchanged for so many years? Indian Cave Petroglyphs.
In Harrison County, West Virginia, a small cave was explored in the 19th century. Inside this cave are a number of incredible prehistoric petroglyphs. These petroglyphs portray a number of animals, including rattlesnakes and fish. Indian Cave is unique for its incredibly preserved state and has been described by archaeologists as “virtually unchanged.” Its petroglyphs are unique for their curious use of the color red, which can be seen on a number of the figures. Archaeologists have determined the petroglyphs to be the work of early Native Americans but cannot identify which culture. Pottery found in the cave suggests that it was occupied sometime between AD 500 and 1675. Similar to other petroglyphs, the motivation for their creation is unclear.