Centuries of intrigue, turmoil and death: Why treasure hunters can’t stay away from Oak Island

‘Something extraordinary happened there. No one knows for certain what it was’

CBC Radio

Oak Island, Nova Scotia is the location of treasure hunts, investigations and excavations since the late 1700s.

It’s the world’s longest-lasting treasure hunt, yet explorers show no sign of giving up on uncovering the secrets of Oak Island.

Rumours began swirling more than two centuries ago that infamous pirate captain William Kidd buried treasure on the 57-hectare piece of land of the coast of Nova Scotia. Since then, the island has drawn in treasure hunters from all over the world, each thinking they’ll be the one to solve a piece of the mystery of where — and what — the so-called treasure is.

Loss of money, sanity and even life have occurred during expeditions. But explorers keep coming back.

“Something extraordinary happened there. No one knows for certain what it was,” said American author and journalist Randall Sullivan.

“There’s just something about the place that captivates people.”

Sullivan dug up some of the history and intrigue of the island in his new book, The Curse of Oak Island: The Story of the World’s Longest Treasure Hunt.

He discusses how Oak Island became such an alluring enigma with Anna Maria Tremonti on The Current. Here is part of their conversation.

How does the mystery of Oak Island begin?

Well, it begins historically in 1795 with three teenage boys on this little island.

[One of the boys] found an area that was — the oak trees were younger. And then he saw the stumps of old oak trees had been cut down. Then he saw that there was sort of a circular depression that the new trees were growing in.

And he concluded that this was probably a pirate treasure, and he got two friends to join in. And what they found immediately started the intrigue.

They dug down a few feet and there was basically a patio of hand-laid stones. They dug down under that and in 10 feet struck wood. [They] thought they’d hit the top of a treasure chest. But what they’d actually hit was a platform of logs that were embedded in the walls of this round shaft. And they knew it was a manmade shaft, because the outer walls were rock-hard clay but inside it was all loose dirt that had been dug out. They dug down another 10 feet … it was another platform of logs.

At that point they looked up, saw 20 feet of earth towering above them and realized they’d be buried alive by any slippage, and so [they] covered it over and filled it in a bit and then went looking for someone who could mount a more exhaustive or elaborate search.

It wasn’t until the next group arrived and hit platforms at 30 feet, 40 feet, 50 feet, 60 feet, 70 feet, 80 feet, and at 90 feet hit one that had a large stone tablet on it.

Then when they flipped it over there was some sort of an inscription on it, something that had been carved or etched into the stone. And it was a code of some sort. … Whatever it was, they couldn’t decipher it.

So the theory was that [Captain Kidd] had gone to Oak Island and buried his treasure there?

This story was spread around the country about an old sailor who claimed that he’d been part of Captain Kidd’s crew and had buried treasure on some island off the Atlantic coast. … So that spread up and down from New England into the Maritime Provinces of Canada and so virtually everybody knew that story and thought that there was a Captain Kidd treasure somewhere buried. So these boys jumped to that conclusion.

There are so many other theories that it boggles the mind because it’s such a Rorschach blot for any treasure hunter or conspiracy theorist or amateur historian.

Some of them are a bit more mundane or obvious like that the Acadians, when they were pushed out of Nova Scotia, might have buried their treasure somewhere or created a bank to store it.

The two that are most attractive to people involve the fact that it may have been the Knights Templar who may have buried … the treasures they removed from under the temple in Jerusalem when they were occupying it. That would be the Holy Grail.

And then there’s a whole segment of people who believe it was the followers of Francis Bacon and all of this group of kind of the original Rosicrucians who gathered around him in England. That one sounded the most outlandish.

And if anybody finds anything, who gets to keep it?

Well, the Canadian government has a special Oak Island Law. It’s the only one of its kind in the country, whereby they permit treasure hunting on Oak Island … but they [the government] get 10 per cent of whatever is found.

People have been digging on Oak Island for more than 200 years. If something was really there, you’d think they would have found it by now.

That’s a fair point to make, but they have found a lot of really curious things. That’s what keeps them going.

I mean a couple of summers ago they found the remains of human beings at 180 feet. So what were people doing 180 feet below the ground on Oak Island other than performing these excavations? And they dated them to at least 300 years ago. So 300 years ago, people were down digging 180 feet below the ground on Oak Island for some reason.

The Money Pit

Toronto’s Millionaires Row

The Bridle Path is an upscale residential neighbourhood in the former city of North York, now part of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, that is characterized by large multi-million dollar mansions and two to four acre (8,000 to 16,000 m²) lot sizes. It is often referred to as “Millionaires’ Row”. It is the most affluent neighbourhood in Canada with an average household income of $936,137,[1] as well as by property values with an average dwelling value of $2.24M.

Although “The Bridle Path” is in fact the name of a road in the area, the term generally applies to the neighbourhood as a whole. It is bounded by The Bridle Path on the north, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre on the south, Bayview Avenue on the west and Wilket Creek on the east. Few roads pass through the area, contributing to the area’s exclusivity. House prices in the Bridle Path are varied, but they are mostly well in excess of a million dollars. It is a secluded neighbourhood, surrounded by the Don River Valley and lush parklands.

 

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Mansion under construction

 

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The Bridle Path has been home to prominent Toronto business people, celebrities and doctors. Media mogul Moses Znaimer used to call the Bridle Path home, while computer businessman Robert Herjavec, former newspaper baron and convicted businessman Conrad Black still own homes in the Bridle Path area. “Casino King of Macau” Stanley Ho owns a High Point Road home purchased in 1987 for a record $5.5 million and currently worth C$27 million.

 

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There are rooms in these giant houses that the owners won’t even enter for months at a time.

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Woman In £1,000,000 Hat Tells Britain To ‘Live Within Its Means’

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A woman sitting on a chair made of gold has encouraged the country to “live within its means” during these times of austerity while addressing a room full of millionaires.

She also voiced support for a government imposing longer working hours with less pay on junior doctors while wearing a hat encrusted with five rubies, 11 emeralds, 17 sapphires, 273 pearls and 2,868 diamonds.

“One also hopes one’s government will put superfast broadband at the top of its agenda,” she added. “Because the Wi-Fi at Balmoral is totally pants.”

She then left Parliament and returned to her £1 billion house. Her crown left shortly afterwards in its own horse-drawn carriage.

Huffington Post

The Rent is Too Damn High Party

The video is from 2010. Jimmy McMillan is fighting for the rights of blue collar people in New York City who can barely afford the insanely high rent in the city.

I watched a documentary from 2017 that covered the gentrification of the New York City boroughs  of Harlem and Brooklyn.  In a part of Brooklyn the mean annual income is $45,000, the average rent in the same area is $33,000.  70 percent of income has to be used towards rent. Not a good scenario. Somebody is making fistfuls of money by creating hardship for the vast majority.

A One Hundred Trillion Dollar Bill

Zimbabwe: The economy is in a mess

Zimbabwe has gone from one economic crisis to another over the last decade. Estimates of the country’s unemployment levels vary, but the country’s biggest trade union claims the jobless rate was as high as 90% earlier this year.

Zimbabwe has struggled with hyperinflation, which peaked in 2008. The country was forced to abandon its own currency at a rate of Z$35 quadrillion to US$1, adopting the use of foreign cash.

 

Harare resident holds up 1,000 and 50,000 dollar notes because of inflation, in 2006Image copyrightAFP/GETTY

Because of a continuing chronic shortage of hard money, the government issued their own version of dollars called bond notes, but they have rapidly lost their value.

People with money stored electronically in banks are unable to access it, or are subject to strict limits on what they can withdraw. Because of this, crypto-currencies that are traded online have risen in popularity. Following the news of the military takeover, Bitcoin prices in Harare surged on Wednesday.

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The third dollar rates above are OMIR. The cash rate differs significantly to the above rates. The table below is the cash rate of the third dollar history:

Month ZWR per USD
Sept 2008 1 000
Oct 2008 90 000
Nov 2008 1 200 000
Mid Dec 2008 60 000 000
End Dec 2008 2 000 000 000
Mid Jan 2009 1 000 000 000 000
2 February 2009 300 000 000 000 000

On 2 February 2009, the RBZ removed 12 zeros from the currency, with 1,000,000,000,000 (third) Zimbabwe dollars being exchanged for 1 new (fourth) dollar. Although the dollar was abandoned on 12 April 2009, exchange rates were maintained at intervals for some months. Therefore, the fourth dollar would be worth 200,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, or 2×1035 first dollars if never revalued.

On 4 June 2015, it was announced that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe would exchange some of the old banknotes for US dollars.

A selection of Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe bearer cheques printed between July 2007 to July 2008 (now expired) that illustrate the hyperinflation rate in Zimbabwe.

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Coca-Cola Toys

Coca-Cola is a world corporate behemoth with an unrelenting marketing campaign.  Coca-Cola is sold in stores, restaurants, and vending machines in every country except Cuba and North Korea.  Based on Interbrand’s best global brand 2016, Coca-Cola was the world’s most valuable brand. Being the world’s most valuable brand makes Coke recognizable everywhere. Pervasive merchandising also keeps the brand in the unconscious of the masses.  And toys are a major part of this merchandising.

A few examples of the toys and games:

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Ken and Barbie join the fun

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Huge Private Yachts, and a Submarine

The super-billionaires of the world have to spend their gobs of money somehow.  From giant homes to private jets they have the resources to indulge.  The billionaires that like the sea buy the biggest private yachts ever imagined.  They cost tens of millions of dollars, often more expensive than their homes.  The costs continue with the upkeep, crews, equipment and helicopters that go with them.  The super yachts are over 400 feet (130 meters) long .  Most of them are owned by Russian oligarchs, Arab sheiks, Greek shipping magnets and American billionaires.

Tiger Woods has a yacht called Privacy.  But it is minor league in comparison to what the super-billionaires sail.

The first picture is Tiger’s yacht.  The last two pictures is Bill Allen’s (co-founder of Microsoft) behemoth named Octopus.  It is 414 feet long.   The size of many modern navy frigates.