Saturday, September 05, 2015

A First Nations Clue to the Location of the Eagle of The Great Google Earth Eagle Mystery Challenge: The Boundary Commission Trail as the Oldest Highway in the West and the Boundary Between the USA and Canada

Dare we mention as a Canadian prelude to this posting: Rose-Marie and Indian Love Call (listen here to Jeanette MacDonald & Nelson Eddy). It was my father's favorite musical, and his favorite song "Rose Marie" (Nelson Eddy) also in the Mario Lanza versionWe have opera singers in the near family.

In this posting we provide a "First Nations" clue in Canada to the location of the Mystery Eagle sought in the Great Google Earth Eagle Mystery Challenge in the previous posting.

With the aid of the following clue, a serious researcher should be able to find the "Mystery Eagle" via Google Earth.

Here is the clue, which touches upon the fixing of our modern-day land survey boundary between the United States and Canada. That boundary in part used ancient Native American Indian trails, one known initially in boundary-setting days as "the Boundary Commission Trail", "the oldest highway in the West", that ultimately stretched to the Pacific Ocean on the heels of ancient paths.

At vantagepoints.ca online, Teyana Neufeld wrote in 2009 about The Boundary Commission Trail, citing to
  • Duncan, Hal G. The South-West Corner. Altona: Friesen Printers, 1984, and to
  • Turner, Peter. “The Historic Forty-Ninth.” Historic Resources Branch Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport. Misc. Materials Relating to Heritage Resources of the Turtle Mountain/Souris Plains Region of Manitoba. CD-ROM. Winnipeg: 2008.
"Though there is one period of its life that gives the Boundary Commission Trail its name, the history of the trail itself spans centuries, crosses cultural lines and involves a multitude of goals and purposes. Parts of it began as a First Nations travel and trading route, which the fur traders of the 18th Century took advantage of when they began penetrating the interior of the then-called Rupert's Land ...."
Go to that online resource at http://vantagepoints.ca/stories/boundary-commission-trail/ and read the relatively short story there about The Boundary Commission Trail, an ancient trail viz. trails that served as the basis for fixing (and land-surveying) the boundary between the United States and Canada.

The Mystery Eagle virtually has its tailfeathers and talons on that trail.

As written at the Boundary Trail Heritage Region website:
"The glorious history of this region stretches back to the prehistoric ocean of the Cretaceous era to the Mound Builders who came following the retreat of the glaciers of the last Ice Age and left their burial and ceremonial mounds throughout the area to mark their passage. Other aboriginal tribes who for untold generations successfully used buffalo jumps to turn herds of bison into food, clothing and shelter followed them." [emphasis added]
And since we do not want to make this too difficult and want you the reader to also experience the thrill of discovery, we add a final, additional clue from Graham MacDonald's, The Boundary Commission Trail and the North West Mounted Police: A Review of Site Development Progress, Manitoba History, Number 19, Spring 1990, Manitoba Historical Society at http://www.mhs.mb.ca/docs/mb_history/19/boundarycommissiontrail.shtml:
"Working from the survey maps, it quickly develops that one of the most intriguing spots along the old Boundary Commission Trail is that around present day La Riviere, east of Turtle Mountain. Here the maps show a great criss-crossing of trails moving east and west, north and south." [emphasis added]
La Rivière (Indian Name Wakopa), Turtle Mountain Municipality, Manitoba, Canada (named afer its founder, pioneer settler Bernard B. La Riviere), is located between Pilot Mound (see http://www.pilotmound.com/history.shtml) to the west (about 18 km viz. 11 miles distant) and Manitou to the east (about 11.5 km viz. 7 miles).

The Canadian Encyclopedia writes about Turtle Mountain Provincial Park that it was named after the Western Painted Turtle found in the park and that this region is very important (pre)historically because:
"This region is the oldest inhabited part of the province, since it was the first dry land after the last Ice Age."
The under-shell or plastron of the Western Painted Turtle has essentially the same shape as a Pawnee Star Map and even the represented colors correspond somewhat.  See generally Ralph N. Buckstaff, Stars and Constellations of a Pawnee Sky Map, American Anthropologist, Volume 29, Issue 2, April-June 1927, Pages 279–285, Abstract at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1525/aa.1927.29.2.02a00110/abstract, full article at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1525/aa.1927.29.2.02a00110/pdf, 28 October 2009.

Buckstaff writes in the above article:
"The “Eagle” is to the south of Lyra as pictured by the Indians.
...
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 drawn on the map first, and the stars in the background were put in later as the smaller ones do not show any interference with the constellations. The large groups were foremost in their minds, their relative positions one to the other being quite accurate. The fainter points of light were put in merely to fill the vacant spaces and represent suns of the lesser magnitude. 
They recognized the seasonal shift of the stars. This is portrayed by the division of the map. 
That they were keen observers, is also shown by the fact that they recorded some double stars. The map being three hundred years old would bar any white influence.
From the facts as we see them regarding the chart, the Pawnee Indians must have had a knowledge of astronomy comparable to that of the early white men."
The pilotmound.com history page writes inter alia about the "Old Mound" of Pilot Mound:
"The mysteries of the Old Mound continue to fascinate and unfold.

A recent book [cited book not found] suggests that the mounds on top of the Old Mound were not burial mounds but remains of astrological observation cones built of sod. These allowed the [makers] to accurately navigate the globe ... using archeological astronomy, [through which they] possessed the navigational knowledge necessary for global navigation....

With the town almost in its shadow, the Old Mound remains shrouded in mystery - an important part of our heritage."
To add to this posting both a romantic as well as land survey touch, we read about La Rivière, Manitoba as follows in Turning Leaves, A History of La Riviere and District, Foreword by Lois Creith, Convenor, La Riviere Historical Book Society, 1979, Printed by Friesen Printers, Altona, Manitoba, scanned online at manitobia.ca/resources/books/local_histories/154.pdf and available in book form at http://www.abebooks.com/9780889250628/Turning-Leaves-History-Riviere-District-0889250626/plp, ISBN No. 0-88925-062-6, Copyright 1979. The book begins with a poem well worth reading, of which we reproduce only the first lines here to avoid copyright issues (go to the original!):
"The La Riviere Hills
by Mrs. Mary Burnett (Plomp)

...
Tonight I am a monarch of all I survey...."
and that poem is followed by another, which we excerpt as follows

"The Old Home Town
 ...
Now myriad lights in the village gleam,
And talk with the twinkling stars above,
And stories are told of the days that were....
-   Walpole Murdoch"
But the Mystery Eagle is not at La Rivière.

THIS POSTING IS Posting Number 135 of
The Great Mound, Petroglyph and Painted Rock Art Journey of Native America

A First Nations Clue to the Location of the Eagle of The Great Google Earth Eagle Mystery Challenge: The Boundary Commission Trail as the Oldest Highway in the West and the Boundary Between the USA and Canada

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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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