Pre-Columbian Visitors to
A miscellany of publications
on Viking, Celtic, etc.; explorations, mythologies and opinions
Most all professional archaeologists and historians consider the topic
of Pre-Columbian visitors to be a preposterous and, in fact, ridiculous
subject of study of far less serious consideration than alchemy, Ouija
boards, flying saucers and moon cheese. It is nonetheless interesting,
hilarious, fun and still a topic dear to the hearts of many amateur New
Dean Snow makes this observation on the subject: "New England has been
producing both serious and silly studies of prehistory for over a century,
longer than most regions of North America. ... New England's myths of prehistory
come in three basic guises. First, there are the pseudolinguistic
studies. ... The second guise of New England's myths comes in the form
of ethnographic comparisons. ...The third class of myths is composed of
notions based mainly on archaeological evidence that is either fabricated
or misinterpreted. ... It is probably true for most regions that the problem
will go away if simply ignored. However, the roots of archaeological
mythology are deep in New England and the myths are numerous." (Snow,
1980, pg. 20-23). Given the numerous references to Vitromanoland
(Celtic settlements in the St. Lawrence River area in the first millennium)
in Norwegian essays, we are not ready to dismiss the possibility of earlier
visitors to New England. The topic is too interesting to be excluded
from the Davistown Museum bibliographies.
Budden, Kent. (2005). Vinland discovery: The unfinished
story. Vinland Publishing, P.O. Box 195, St. Anthony, NL. A0K 4T0 Canada.
Cary, A. and Wormington, H. M. (1929). Ancient explorers.
Allen and Unwin, London.
Ceram, C.W. (1971). The first American: A story of
North American archaeology. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc., NY, NY. IS.
Currelly, C.T. (March 1939). Viking weapons found near Beardmore,
Ontario. The Canadian Historical Review. 20 (1). pg. 4.
- Contains an excellent summary of archaeological discoveries
that place the only known (as of 1971) Viking settlement at L'Anse aux
Meadows in Newfoundland.
DeCosta, B.F. (1890). Ancient
Norumbega, or the voyages of Simon Ferdinando and John Walker to the Penobscot
River, 1579-1580. Joel Munsell's Sons, Albany, NY.
de Jonge, Reinoud M. and Wakefield, Jay Stuart. (2002). How
the Sun God reached America c. 2500 BCE: A guide to megalithic sites.
MCS, Inc., Kirkland, WA. IS.
- See the quote from this text that was reprinted in Daimond,
1951 in the Norumbega Reconsidered bibliography.
- DeCosta's theory of Viking incursion was thoroughly and famously republished
by Kohl (see below).
Fitzhugh, William W and Ward, Elisabeth I., Eds. (2000). Vikings:
The north Atlantic saga. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington,
- Amateur archaeologists following the tradition of Dr. Barry Fell seek to
explain the meaning of megalithic petroglyphs, possibly recording a pre-historic
quest to find the other side of the world. The authors advocate the
possibility that Stonehenge is a monument celebrating the discovery of
America and the North Salem, NH, site was a nautical center where bronze
age sea captains met.
- The authors interpret the Native American petroglyphs of Embden, Maine,
as European in origin and make brief mention of the Celtic ogam inscriptions
on Monhegan Island.
Fell, Barry. (1978). America B. C.: Ancient settlers
in the New World. Wallaby Pocket Books, NY, NY. IS.
Goodwin, W.B. (1946). The ruins of Great Ireland in New
England. Meador, Boston, MA.
Hall, J. and Woodman, E. (1973). Beehive-shaped stone structures:
Ancient or recent origin. Man in the Northeast. 5. pg. 60-62. IS.
- Interesting, but full of misinformation.
Haugen, Einar. (1942). Voyages to Vinland. Knopf,
Haugen, Einar. (1972). The rune stones of Spirit Pond,
Maine. Man in the Northeast. 4. pg. 62-79.
Haugen, Einar. (1973). Comment on O.G. Landsverk's "The spirit
pond cryptography". Man in the Northeast. 6. pg. 75-76.
- "Every indication therefore points to the conclusion that the Spirit Pond
inscription could not have been carved by Scandinavian Vikings in the Middle
Ages." (pg. 77).
- "Norwegians and Icelanders coming to North American shores in the year
1000 did not suddenly change their language and start talking or writing
pidgin Old Norse when they stepped ashore." (pg. 79).
Hencken, H.O. (1939). The "Irish Monastery" at North Salem,
New Hampshire. The New England Quarterly. 12. pg. 429-442.
Hencken, H.O. (1940). What are Patee's Caves? Scientific
American. 165(5). pg. 258-259.
Horsford, Eben Norton. (1891). The defences of Norumbega
and a review of the reconnaissances of Col. T. W. Higginson, Professor
Henry W. Haynes, Dr. Justin Winsor, Dr. Francis Parkman, and Rev. Dr. Edmund
F. Slafter. Houghton, Mifflin and Company, Boston and New York and
Riverside Press, Cambridge. IS.
Ingstad, A. S. (1977). The discovery of a Norse settlement
in America. Columbia University Press, New York, NY.
- Fulminations about the location of Norumbega at Watertown, MA. Intriguing
unexplained photographs in a text full of maps, but without any other supporting
evidence that Norumbega was actually at this location. See Baker,
et. al., 1994, who gives a much clearer explanation of the many cartographic
references to Norumbega, though not as a Viking settlement.
Jameson, J. Franklin. (1905). The Northmen, Columbus,
and Cabot. Original Narratives of American History Series, American
Historical Society, NY, NY.
Jones, Gwyn. (1964). The Norse Atlantic saga. NY,
Kohl, J.G. (1869). Vol 1.
History of the discovery of Maine. In: Collections of the Maine
Historical Society: Second Series: History of the state of
Maine. Willis, William, Ed. Bailey and Noyes, Portland,
Landsverk, O.G. (1973). The Spirit Pond cryptography.
Man in the Northeast. 6. pg. 67-75.
- This book contains very interesting speculations
on the location of Vinland; his interpretation of a southern New England
location was shortly thereafter deconstructed by B. F. DeCosta (see
above). One of many in a long history of misinterpretations about
the location of the Viking settlements in North America.
Lenik, Edward J. (1975). Excavations at Spirit Pond. Man
in the Northeast. 9. pg. 54-60. FCW
Lenik, Edward J. (1977). The Spirit Pond shellheap. Archaeology
of Eastern North America. 5. pg. 94-107. IS.
Lenik, Edward J. (2002). Picture rocks: American Indian
rock art in the northeast woodlands. University Press of New England,
Lebanon, NH. IS - Uncorrected proof.
Mallery, Arlington and Harrison, Mary Roberts. (1951). The
rediscovery of lost America: The story of the Pre-Columbian iron age in
America. E. P. Dutton, NY, NY. IS.
- This text is to be published in January 2003.
Massachusetts Archaeological Society. (1957). Ipswich B.C. Bulletin.
18(3). pg. 49-55.
- More bunk, but fun reading.
McGhee, Robert. (1984). Contact between native
North Americans and the medieval Norse: a review of the evidence. American
Antiquity 49(1). pg. 4-26.
McGovern, Thomas H. (1981). The Vinland adventure:
a north Atlantic perspective. North American Archaeologist
2:4. pg. 285-308.
Meggers, Betty J. (1972). Prehistoric America.
Aldine Atherton Inc., Chicago, IL. IS.
Mowat, Farley. (1965). Westviking, the ancient Norse
in Greenland and North America. Boston, MA.
Olson, Julius E. and Edward G. Bourne, Eds. (1906). The
Vinland history of the Flat Island book. IN: The Northmen, Columbus
and Cabot, 985-1503: The Voyages of the Northmen; The Voyages of Columbus
and of John Cabot. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York, NY. Xerox
of pages 45-66.
Proper, Ida Sedgwick. (1930). Monhegan,
the cradle of New England. The Southworth Press, Portland, ME. IS.
Reade, John. (1889).
The Basques in North America. Proceedings and Transcripts of the Royal
Society of Canada for the year 1888. 4. pg. 21-39.
- "In the search for records concerning Pre-Columbian voyages to North America,
the sagas have been translated many times by students, with variations
as to the meaning of important words, what the Norse meant when they spoke
of the length of night and day, their calculations of sailing time, distance,
climate, products, and numerous other matters. Each translation has
been interpreted differently by the different writers, English, Norse,
French, and American—in fact the whole subject of Norse voyages to Vinland
the Good is a seething whirlpool of conjecture, surmise and determined
opinion by localizing historians. The whole body of Norse-discovery
literature has, therefore, become so distasteful to many historians that
they are tempted to go to the other extreme and throw the whole of these
legendary tales overboard." (pg. 24).
- Also see Samuel Eliot Morison's 1971, The
European Discovery of America: The Northern Voyages A.D. 500-1600 for
his extensive commentary on the Norse, Celtic, Welsh and Zeno controversies.
- See our other comments and extensive quotations from this text in the essay Tales
of Ancient Monhegan, information files on Monhegan
Island and the Italian Zeno's Pre-Columbian
explorations in the Ancient Pemaquid section and annotations in the Maine
History: Antiquarian sources and Ancient
Robinson, Brian S. (1996). A regional analysis of the
Moorehead burial tradition: 8500-3700 b.p. Archaeology of Eastern North
America 24. pg. 95-148.
Robinson, Brian S. (1997). Archaic period burial patterning
in north-eastern North America. The Review of Archaeology 17(1). pg.
Seaby, P. (December 1978). The first datable Norse find
from North America? Seaby Coin and Medal Bulletin.
Seaby, Peter. (1979). The first datable Norse find
from North America? Maine Archaeological Society Bulletin 19(1). pg.
Severin, T. (1977). The voyage of "Brendan". National
Geographic. 152(6). pg. 770-797.
Shepard, Elizabeth G. (1893). A guide book to Norumbega
and Vineland. Boston, MA.
Skelton, R.A., Marston, Thomas and Painter, George. (1965). The
Vinland map and the Tartar relation. Yale University Press, New Haven,
- One of Hosford's more enthusiastic devotees.
Smith, Joshua Toulmin. (1839). The Northmen in New England,
or, America in the tenth century. Hilliard, Gray & Co., Boston,
- Currently, regarded as a hoax, the publication of this book by a prestigious
university caused a sensation. Available for visitor perusal in the
Museum reading room.
Strandwold, Olaf. (1939). Runic rock inscriptions along
the American Atlantic seaboard. Published by the author, Prosser, WA.
Vescelius, G.S. (no date). The antiquity of Pattee's
caves. Unpublished report in the files of the Early Sites Foundation,
Williams, Stephen. (1991). Fantastic archaeology: The
wild side of archaeology, North American prehistory. University of
Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, PA.
- "A review of archaeological fakes and frauds. Includes material that
pertains to Maine." (Ray, The Indians
of Maine, pg. 4).