Monday, April 27, 2015

The Shell Rings on Sapelo Island Near Darien Georgia Mark Upper Stars of Pisces in an Astounding Manner: They Show an Early Snorkeler with Water Serpent, Whale, Shark, Sardine, Octopus, Starfish and Tropical Fish

To complete the upper part of the stars of Pisces in the mounds, we now go to the so-called "shell mound rings" and "nonring middens" of Sapelo Island near Darien, Georgia, which have been dated (at the earliest) to ca. 2170 B.C.

As written inter alia at the Wikipedia under Sapelo Island:
"Sapelo Island ... is a state-protected island (barrier island) located in McIntosh County, Georgia. The island is reachable only by airplane or boat, with the primary ferry coming from the Sapelo Island Visitors Center in McIntosh County, Georgia, a seven mile (11 km), twenty-minute trip.

Approximately 97 percent of the island is owned by the state of Georgia and is managed by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources; the remainder is under private ownership.... Visitors to the island must be a part of an organized tour or guests of residents on the island. The island also has a small private airport run by the state of Georgia
The Sapelo shell mound complex is one of the most astounding sites we have deciphered, as you will see in the course of this posting, especially since we initially accepted the standard view that the site consisted of three large shell mound rings and numerous non-ring middens of little apparent consequence.

Since we had just posted our decipherments of the Mill Cove Complex and the Little Talbot Island Grand Mounds as stars of Pisces, it appeared superficially that the three Sapelo ring mounds in their triangular formation likely represented the stars Phi, Upsilon and Tau Piscium above the other two sites.

Nevertheless, we pressed on to get to the bottom of some puzzling things we found in our examination of various representations of the Sapelo site, which appeared to us to be far more complicated than one imagined at first glance. This view was verified -- we agree totally -- in the article cited below where Thompson et al. write at p. 192, citing to the work of Lewis H. Larson Jr.:
"... Archaic peoples possessed a degree of complexity previously unrecognized by Southeastern archaeologists."
How right they will be proven to be!

We read as follows in the abstract to Victor D. Thompson, Matthew D. Reynolds, Bryan Haley, Richard Jefferies, Jay K. Johnson, and Laura Humphries, The Sapelo Shell Ring Complex: Shallow Geophysics on a Georgia Sea Island, Southeastern Archaeology, Vol. 23, No. 2, (Winter 2004), pp. 192-201, Maney Publishing, Article Stable URL:
"The Sapelo Shell Ring complex, located on Sapelo Island, Georgia, consists of three large circular shell mounds and numerous smaller amorphous shell middens. Today, one of the rings is highly visible; however, the two other rings and the nonring middens have little surface relief and are virtually invisible. In fact, the location and very existence of the two other rings has been debated for some time. Recent geophysical survey, however, has located the subsurface remains of the two less obvious rings, as well as some of the amorphous middens."
The work of Thompson et al. as cited above is essential because at page 198 they produce a topographic map of the Sapelo Island shell mound complex and accompany it with text indicating that they had found numerous circular "anomalies" inside and outside the rings and other amorphous middens, i.e. that there was much more to the site than immediately met the eye.

That topographic map in the Thompson et al. publication is the key to Sapelo!

At this point, let us add the following addendum about JSTOR, where we were able to access the Thompson article for free and from which we obtained the images that served as the basis for the decipherment presented below.

You will have to go to JSTOR and register to see the original topographic map and images and try your hand at tracing that map to see if you come close to our result. You may, or may not. Give it a try. But you will need a program like Paint Shop Pro (we use the ancient version 7) which allows all kinds of zooming, color change and lightening and especially the threshold level function, which we set to "1" to arrive at a black-traced black and white result.

We have been severe critics of JSTOR in the past because of their pay-to-view policy for articles originally and already subsidized directly or indirectly by the taxpayers, so why should we have to pay for them again? Such payment is no problem for university faculty, who not only are paid well for their academic positions, but whose colleges and universities also foot the JSTOR bill, so that the JSTOR world is essentially open to them for free, whereas those of us who are researchers in alumni standing (surely a small minority of people) not only get no pay from any institution but are asked to pay considerable sums to view articles whose value we can only guess until we actually see the articles.

To their credit, however, as we discovered today, at least JSTOR now permits registered users to view a few articles for free on their user shelf, and that covers the most urgent articles, such as the article cited above, without which our analysis could not have been performed. So, for that we are thankful.

Here is the decipherment of Sapelo, and believe you me, it is fantastic! We obtained our result by zooming the original topographic map image from Thompson et al. (as cited above) at differing colors and shades of brightness and various higher resolutions ranging from twice to eight times the size of the original image and then tracing to the best of our honest ability all the shapes and circles and darker lines that we could find -- to see if it made any sense, as we had no idea what was being portrayed initially, other than the fish of Pisces. You see the result below:

The Shell Mounds of Sapelo Island near Darien Georgia
Mark Stars of Pisces at the Celestial Equator ca. 2170 B.C.
Showing Them Anthropomorphically as an Underwater Snorkeler
Using Archaic Breathing Apparatus in an Ocean of Fish

As one can see from our decipherment image, the Sapelo Island shell mounds, i.e. the so-called "rings" and "non-ring" middens paint an underwater sea picture of the stars of Pisces in ca. 2170 B.C. at the celestial equator.

What is astounding is that the main figure is an ancient snorkeler viz. diver using some kind of archaic breathing apparatus about which we are going to make no speculations, for the simple reason that we know nothing beyond basics about diving technology, ancient or recent. We leave that to the experts.

The snorkeler or diver is represented in a sea of fish marked by the stars, including a water serpent, whale, shark (or other large fish), sardine, octopus, starfish and tropical fish.

We never expected to find an ancient snorkeler or underwater diver at Sapelo, but there he is, and, as we have rudimentarily discovered online, there is in fact ample evidence of ancient snorkeling known. We quote from the "Early History of Snorkeling" and "Earliest Snorkelers" at Key West Snorkeling Tours:
"Thought to be the earliest mention of snorkeling, the Greek philosopher Aristotle mentioned the practice in his study "Parts of the Animals", where he refers to divers as using "instruments for respiration" resembling an elephant’s trunk.

The very earliest snorkelers were thought to be sponge farmers on the Grecian island of Crete some 5,000 years ago who used hollow tubes to allow breathing while they kept their faces in the water to free-dive for sponges. Archeologists studying Assyrian bas-relief paintings from 900 B.C. have identified figures using air-filled animal skins as a crude form of diving tank, allowing exploration further beneath the sea. Snorkels also found their use in the ancient world’s military action. Around 500 B.C., historian Herodotus tells of Scyllis, a Greek who escaped a Persian ship undetected by using a hollow reed as a snorkel and then proceeded to cut the entire Persian fleet adrift.
Good snorkeling!

THIS POSTING IS Posting Number 67 of
The Great Mound, Petroglyph and Painted Rock Art Journey of Native America

The Shell Rings on Sapelo Island Near Darien Georgia Mark Upper Stars of Pisces in an Astounding Manner: They Show an Early Snorkeler with Water Serpent, Whale, Shark, Sardine, Octopus, Starfish and Tropical Fish

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Sky Earth Native America

Sky Earth Native America 1:
American Indian Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs
Cave Paintings Earthworks & Mounds as Land Survey & Astronomy
Volume 1, Edition 2, 266 pages, by Andis Kaulins.

  • Sky Earth Native America 2:
    American Indian Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs
    Cave Paintings Earthworks & Mounds as Land Survey & Astronomy
    Volume 2, Edition 2, 262 pages, by Andis Kaulins.

  • Both volumes have the same cover except for the labels "Volume 1" viz. "Volume 2".
    The image on the cover was created using public domain space photos of Earth from NASA.


    Both book volumes contain the following basic book description:
    "Alice Cunningham Fletcher observed in her 1902 publication in the American Anthropologist
    that there is ample evidence that some ancient cultures in Native America, e.g. the Pawnee in Nebraska,
    geographically located their villages according to patterns seen in stars of the heavens.
    See Alice C. Fletcher, Star Cult Among the Pawnee--A Preliminary Report,
    American Anthropologist, 4, 730-736, 1902.
    Ralph N. Buckstaff wrote:
    "These Indians recognized the constellations as we do, also the important stars,
    drawing them according to their magnitude.
    The groups were placed with a great deal of thought and care and show long study.
    ... They were keen observers....
    The Pawnee Indians must have had a knowledge of astronomy comparable to that of the early white men."
    See Ralph N. Buckstaff, Stars and Constellations of a Pawnee Sky Map,
    American Anthropologist, Vol. 29, Nr. 2, April-June 1927, pp. 279-285, 1927.
    In our book, we take these observations one level further
    and show that megalithic sites and petroglyphic rock carving and pictographic rock art in Native America,
    together with mounds and earthworks, were made to represent territorial geographic landmarks
    placed according to the stars of the sky using the ready map of the starry sky
    in the hermetic tradition, "as above, so below".
    That mirror image of the heavens on terrestrial land is the "Sky Earth" of Native America,
    whose "rock stars" are the real stars of the heavens, "immortalized" by rock art petroglyphs, pictographs,
    cave paintings, earthworks and mounds of various kinds (stone, earth, shells) on our Earth.
    These landmarks were placed systematically in North America, Central America (Meso-America) and South America
    and can to a large degree be reconstructed as the Sky Earth of Native America."

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