Friday, October 19, 2012

Oak Island Money Pit

Author: Ryan Metzler

            Treasures are depicted to children as being where the “X” is on the map.  However, with the Oak Island Money Pit, there is uncertainty where that “X” is, let alone how deep it is.  It is believed to be on Oak Island in Nova Scotia, Canada  in a pit that has yet to be dug to the bottom.  This treasure is believed to have been the work of a pirate.  Not just any pirate, but the infamous Blackbeard the Pirate.
            Blackbeard was known for his creative ways of inflicting terror on his audience as they stood by and watched him be one of the most feared pirates on the sea.  There was points in his reign that citizens of towns and villages would awake to "a great Terror" (Butler).  Blackbeard would rob, cheat and steal to make a buck and that’s what made him not only feared but fearless.  His conniving ways to obtain his money made people search for “the world's longest and most expensive treasure hunt and one of the world's deepest and most costly archaeological digs” (Nickell).
            Blackbeard became feared because of the way he ruled the ocean.  Blackbeard would intrude on ships and overtake them.  He would rade and capture ships by determining “a ship's nationality first. Then they raised that country's flag on the pirate ship so they appeared to be friendly” (Kirkpatrick).  This reign of fear “lasted two long years. Blackbeard and his crew of pirates terrorized sailors on the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea from 1716 through 1718. They ambushed ships carrying passengers and cargo in the dim light of dawn and dusk when the pirates' ship was hard to see” (Kirkpatrick).  This shows Blackbeard’s creative mind.  I believe a person or group of people who needed to bury the Oak Island Money Pit would have to have an imagination of the like and a strong emotional connection to understand how people would react.
            I personally am not sure if this treasure truly exists.  What I do think exists is the greed of the digger.  These people are desiring the most prized possessions that any man would dream of discovering.  However, every prize comes with a prize and maybe the price of this treasure is to wait out the storm of the booby trap or maybe the lives that it has cost or the money to excavate.
The more elusive the treasure has proved, the more speculation it has engendered. Given the “immense amount of labor” presumably required to construct the pit and the accompanying “flooding tunnel” that served as a “booby trap,” presumption of a pirates' hoard has begun to be supplanted by such imagined prizes as the French crown jewels, Shakespeare's manuscripts, the “lost treasure" of the Knights Templar, even the Holy Grail and the imagined secrets of the “lost continent” of Atlantis (Nickell).
There are still many things that have yet to be discovered in this world such as jewels, manuscripts and secrets; but maybe the keeper of the past’s greatest secrets is in this money pit…or maybe not.  People’s greed will surely never die, so why should the legend? “Oak Island, in Nova Scotia, is famous for its Money Pit, a mystery that has endured two centuries, claimed six lives and swallowed up millions in life savings” (Whipps).  The search has just begun.

This video discusses the secrets of Oak Island and the possible answers to its mystery. 

Works Cited:

Butler, Lindley S. "Blackbeard's Terror." American Heritage 61.1 (2011): 29-37. Academic
Search Premier. Web. 11 Oct. 2012.. Web. 11 Oct. 2012

Kirkpatrick, Jennifer. “Blackbeard Pirate Terror at Sea.” National Geographic. National
Geographic,. Web. 10 October 2012

Nickell, Joe. “The Secrets of Oak Island.” Committee for Skeptical Inquiry.  Center for Inquiry
Affiliate, Jun. 2012. Web. 10 October 2012.

whanethewhip. “Oak Island Money Pit Mystery.” Video. Youtube. Youtube, 6 Jun. 2010. Web. 18 Oct. 2012.

Whipps, Heather. “For Sale: Island with Mysterious Money Pit.”  Live Science.  Live Science, 7
Nov. 2005.  Web. 10 October 2012.

Links for further research:
Mysteries of Canada
Discusses all of the mysteries in Canada.

This video analyzes the Money Pit and its booby traps.

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
This site looks at perhaps the most well-known excavator of the Oak Island Money Pit, Franklin
D. Roosevelt. 

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