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Possible new Norse site found in Canada

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posted on May, 30 2009 @ 02:23 PM
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One of Canada's top Arctic archeologists says the remnants of a stone-and-sod wall unearthed on southern Baffin Island may be traces of a shelter built more than 700 years ago by Norse seafarers, a stunning find that would be just the second location in the New World with evidence of a Viking-built structure.


This would be an interesting additional to the Norse side in Newfoundland L'anse Aux Meadows.

The Greenland Norse were always short on wood and drift wood was plentiful in the lands to the west and with forests further south. You also had Walrus which had a useful skin and ivory.


Norse settlement at Baffin bay?


For those reading the news report you might be amused at the challenge by another scientist. However that is normal.

Quote from Katherine Reese

"Anytime you have a new find that changes what was previously thought it's almost always going to be "controversial" and there will always be someone who will challenge it. It is how the system works, otherwise anything with little evidence could be accepted. Something is proposed, its challenged, and the questions or points brought up by the challenger answered. Maybe if you read journal articles instead of getting your information from newspapers solely then you'd find these things out."




posted on May, 30 2009 @ 04:47 PM
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reply to post by Hanslune
 


hi there hans,
thats very cool, i think the norse had small settlements all around the north east coast. But they were more like seasonal hunting/fishing family camps. A place you could sail to from iceland in the summer fish and hunt or graze a few cattle before returning to iceland and the saftey of a group community for the winter.
These small family camps would have left such a small impact on the environment that they would be hard to find today.
Its a way to exploit rescources without putting excess pressures on the home community.
One thin I found interesting while reading about the collapse of one of the greenland settlements is that it appears as though the norse never fully utilized the abundant game rescources in winter.
They never fully adopted an arctic lifestyle and starved while there were ample food sources of seals and the like that the native americans used.
At one site they ate their dogs then finally their cows, a taboo in norse society, but there is no sign they hunted seal or walrus for food.
I also think the norses reliance on milk as a staple food also doomed their colonization of the new world.
In many instances of new cultures meeting for the first time, an exchange of food is the first step to building trust.
In the case of the norse, milk was king, and that warm whole milk doesnt sit well in the belly of the average native american of the period.
And as was documented in one case, when the norse thought they were being hospitable and offered up a warm bowl of fresh milk to a native, they were in fact sowing the seeds for conflict.
Once the native americans had a little while to digest the milk in their stomach would start to sour and they would get cramps and diarhea , and think they were poisoned by the new comers.
From that point on there would be no trust and the norse would never develop a trade relationship could have sustained them in times of need.
I seem to remeber a few years ago that a norse boat with a woman in it, was found frozen in some pack ice.
I believe that she was near a failed settlement or some such thing.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 01:43 AM
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It wouldn't surprise me at all, especially given that we already know for sure that the Norse made it to North America. It's not much of a stretch to imagine they landed elsewhere, too.

Makes you wonder, though, if it turns out that it isn't Norse... who built it? From the article, the evidence seems fairly likely it was Norse; similar tools and so on, though that one skeptic figures the similarity is just a coincidence.



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 04:14 AM
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Originally posted by DragonsDemesne
It wouldn't surprise me at all, especially given that we already know for sure that the Norse made it to North America. It's not much of a stretch to imagine they landed elsewhere, too.

Last I checked, Canada was part of North America??



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 09:43 AM
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Howdy Punkinworks

I suspect the Norse landed farther to the south. However their site selection criteria; near the sea, near running fresh water and with firewood matches that of the early European settlers.

A more modern colony probably sits on those site(s) now. Unlike later colonists the Norse left few traces in their movements. They had few resources and kept what they had well in hand.

An avid amateur archaeologist I knew spent decades looking for Norse artifacts that might have been collected by unknowing amateurs...never found anything.




From the article, the evidence seems fairly likely it was Norse; similar tools and so on, though that one skeptic figures the similarity is just a coincidence.


After the finding of L'anse aux Meadow one scientist proposed that the site wasn't Norse but was instead native Americans who had gone to Greenland or Iceland. Picked up the culture and brought it back....



posted on May, 31 2009 @ 01:47 PM
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reply to post by Hanslune
 



Howdy hans,


I suspect the Norse landed farther to the south. However their site selection criteria; near the sea, near running fresh water and with firewood matches that of the early European settlers.


Yes, people tend to find the same places to live given the same environmental pressures and or similar lifestyles.
A good place to camp is a good place to camp.
In fact I have a favorite campsite in the mountains, that I suspect people have been camping at for thousands of years.
It also spans at least 3 cultures, the native americans, american settlers in the 1870's and now finally us.

I'll bet that in more than one instance the norse moved into a site the natives had used and then resettled after the norse left.
That would certainly make for some ambiguity as to who lived there.



posted on Jun, 1 2009 @ 12:23 AM
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Yep I use to camp in a place out in desert near Liwa. Several times I sank quick test pits and came across pottery from four civilizations covering many thousands of years - in about fifteen minutes of digging.

Oh and edited to add

A piece of Barbar pottery typical of Dilmun

Some pottery similar to that found at Umm an Nar (don't remember the classification name)

A nice piece of 18th century Staffordshire, a tea pot I think

Several pieces of minai style Persian pottery from around the 12th century??

Lots of charcoal and remains of burnt bones



[edit on 1/6/09 by Hanslune]



posted on Jun, 1 2009 @ 04:28 AM
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reply to post by Hanslune
 


Sweet,

At my spot ive found some arrow heads, recent and high quality, and a couple of obsidian scrapers, that a local expert says are very "archaic", plus an iron mule and cast iron stove parts from a lumber camp circa 1900 and finally a canteen from a fire crew in 1950 ish, that was left in the crook of a tree. The tree has now grown around the canteen.

Not nearly as exciting as 12th century pottery, but the scrapers were thought to be at least 3k years old from their style of construction.
Sometime in the future an anthropologist will find this site with the almost neolithic artifacts mixed with stuff from the iron phase of the industrial industrial revolution and finally stuff from our modern age in the canteen and the dozens or so wood,aluminum, and carbon arrows ive lost there hunting.

The coolest thing is that I found the arrow heads by just sitting down.
I had hiked my mountain bike to the top of the ancient trail that leads to this spot from lower down and I spied a rock that was perfect for sitting down at. As I went to put down my helmet and gloves on a rock that was perfectly situated for such a reaction, I noticed several med sized arrow heads in a depression of the rock to my right.
Right where I instinctivley went to set my stuff down, on a medium sized flat topped rock adjacent to the large rock I was sitting on.
They had been there so long the dust and pollen and other forest detritus that had settled into the depression had turned to soil and was growing moss, grass and leichens.
I picked up the top two arrow heads, trying not to disturb the rest of them. One each of obsidian and a banded flint.
Obsidian is the most used stone by the local native americans for arrow heads, spear heads and other such sharp tools.
But as far as I know flint is pretty rare around here(basically non existant).
I dont know where a flint of this type is available anywhere around here, and the obsidian likely came from a place called glass mountain, the core of an extinct volcano about 100 miles away. The place is pretty wild it is essentialy a mountain of obsidian, not just an outcropping but an entire mountain several thousand feet tall.
In places the trail going over it is carved into volcanic glass.
When I enquired as to where I could find find such a stone locally I was told I couldnt and that it was several hundred if not a thousand miles to find such a stone.
This attests to the wide netw work of trade that exsisted back in the day.



posted on Jun, 1 2009 @ 06:11 AM
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reply to post by Ecidemon
 


Sure is
I was saying that if they made it to one site in North America (the one in Newfoundland) then reaching a second site (Baffin Island) is certainly plausible.



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