Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

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Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby RRD2 on Tue Sep 29, 2009 12:25 pm

In 1970, Triton Alliance did a great deal of work at Smith's Cove. We have been discussing the logs with Roman numerals on them in the previous topic of some of my "new stuff" and this discussion will contain many new images that Jo will upload here for me including a field sketch of the Smith's Cove drain system prepared by my father in 1965. It has a great deal of information on it, so please study it carefully. Smith's Cove is an interesting, complex and fascinating area on the ialand. Its importance to the treasure and the engineering elsewhere may be of the utmost importance and the importance may rival that of the money pit itself, in my opinion.

Many wonderful artifacts were discovered there. When my father first arrived on the island to begin work, he worked with Restall exclusively at Smith's Cove for the amount of time that they had to spend together until the terrible tragedy. Restall considered the cove to be extremely important and his work there was extensive, comprehensive and of the utmost importance. He carried on what was begun many years earlier by the previous groups that we read about in D'Arcy O'Connor's books. It is fascinating stuff, to say the least.

What is this structure that they uncovered? Triton states: "Historians and archaeologists who have worked closely with Triton throughout the operations believe that this structure is probably the remains of the original builders' coffer dam erected during excavation of the flood tunnel and its underwater collector drains. Other discoveries made by Triton at Smith's Cove include: matted organic material identified by the National Research Council as coconut fibre (which is consistent with 1850 reports of masses of coconut fuber underlying the beach where it seems to have been used as a filter to keep the collector drains from clogging); the remains of a ruler or framing square (image to be added by Jo); an unusual antique wooden box (images posted to the previous thread by n4N and new image to be added for me by Jo as well); and a wrought iron caulking tool."

Many thanks to Jo for adding these images for me! I sincerely hope that spirited discussion will follow and we will all participate. Was this the remains of a careening facility for the old ships? Was it specifically engineered to facilitate the offload of boxes of treasure to be secreted elsewhere on te island? What is the unusual 'U-shaped structure"? What was the purpose of the "V drain" in RD1's field sketch? There are so many questions and so few answers. Thank you to n4N for adding the images of the old wooden box found buried next to one of the logs. Every time I see that box, I think of the movie 'The Great Escape" and visualize Charles Bronson at work underground in one of the escape tunnels, using such a box with wheels to transport dirt to the surface....hmmmmm.

My father assisted with some financing for this work in 1970 as communicated with the powers that be during this period, lending whatever expertise he could from the States. I will add as much from the diary and correspondence as possible as the discussion progresses and although we have discussed Smith's Cove extensively from time to time, it has been a while since we have participated together on this project and probably the first time many of you have seen the actual discoveries that were made as a result of this incredible work that was completed almost 40 years ago. I sincerely hope that this area is looked at extensively by the new owners. I feel that there is much still to be found and to be learned there. I also believe that they should locate the junction of the drains, which is of such great importance and follow it wherever it leads. There is much to do!

Thank you in advance for your discussion and sharing your thoughts about this fascinating early engineering on Oak Island.

Robert
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby kitch on Tue Sep 29, 2009 10:39 pm

okay i am on the edge of my seat with anticipation!
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:34 pm

Sorry for the slight delay in getting these online. I'm actually in Chicago at the moment for a friend's wedding and have been pretty busy these past few days (not to mention jet lagged). Anyway, here follows an awesome collection of iimages, with many, many thanks to Robert for sharing them with us.

Here's the first of Robert's photos:

Image

This is a copy of the field sketch that my father did in 1965, with an overview of the drain system, important points of interest, Restall's work, the mysterious "V" drain and much about the cove. As you might know, when my father arrived on the island to begin work, he and Restall worked exclusively at the cove for the short amount of time that they spent together until the terrible tragedy.

My father was on the island when it happened, unfortunately and it really tore him up. Not only because Restall and other friends were lost but also Marshall Hiltz's son, a good friend and my father's friend. My dad really liked Marshall and when heavy work was being done on the island, I often stayed in Marshall's shack at the head of the causeway and we would talk about many things and he carved me a beautiful wooden boat. When my mother visited, we would wade out into Mahone bay and pick scallops up off the sea floor (yes - wade out and pick up 6" scallops!!!) and eat them. Marshall opened his with a pen knife and ate them raw, but we took them back to Chester and cooked them. Marhall was my friend also and we spent a lot of time together. I missed him a lot when I left.
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:37 pm

Image

"This is an aerial photo of Smith's Cove during excavation work in 1970 showing the previous searcher's coffer dam (#1), the location of where coconut fiber was found (#2), the "U" shaped log structuures (#3) and Tritin's 1970 coffer dam (#4)."
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:42 pm

Image

Here is another close-up of a log with Roman numerals on it.
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:47 pm

Image

Here is another image, this time of a log with cross members in place.

It may help us understand the purpose of the structure.
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:49 pm

Image

n4N has posted images of this wooden box also and here is a close-up. It was found at the cove adjacent to one of the buried logs. is believed to possibly have been used to remove rocks during tunnelling operations.

Every time I see this box, I think of the movie 'The Great Escape' and visualize Charles Bronson working underground in one of the tunnels, using a box very similar to this one to transport dirt fom the tunnel face to the surface. I'll bet that it reminds you too?
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:52 pm

Image

" Part of the log structure uncovered 4ft. below the seabed at Smith's Cove. The depth of this structure and its position outside the perimeter of the previous searchers' coffer dam indicates that it is original work"
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:54 pm

Image

"This fragment of an old ruler or framing square was found near the buried log structures at Smith's Cove. It is made of hand forged wrought iron. The numbers and calibrations have been engraved by hand and are in English measure. Research scientists at STELCO estimate that it was manufactured prior to 1783"
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Re: Smith's Cove Exploration and Discoveries 1970

Postby Jo on Thu Oct 01, 2009 2:59 pm

Image

"Boatswain's whistle made of bone or ivory found at Smith's Cove about 1901"
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