RE: Blog entry of 7/3/2007, Bermuda Triangle Yields Marble Columns …
After I posted my July 3rd entry (below) I was contacted by a reader who questioned the authenticity of the marble columns mentioned by Dr. Greg Little in his article that I cited. If you use your favorite search engine to look for “bimini marble columns” you’ll discover that there’s a lot of information (and misinformation) on the Internet about the alleged discovery of marble columns. I decided to take the matter up with William M. (Bill) Donato, an anthropologist and archaeologist who has accompanied Drs. Greg and Lora Little on a number of their Bahamas expeditions and who has also made many of his own, dating back to 1974.
I asked, “Did the marble columns fall off a barge or are they ancient artifacts?”
This, in part, is his reply:
“This is actually a complicated issue and depends entirely on WHICH marble you are talking about. There was a fluted marble column on North Bimini at Entrance Point. Dr. Zink checked out the area in 1989, but it was gone then. Ferro and Grumley in their book “Atlantis – The Autobiography of a Search” had a photo of it, I think. It was definitely shown in Marx’s 1971 Argosy article. There was a slab on South Bimini, intentionally destroyed after 1998. I showed it to Andrew Collins, who took a sample. It supposedly came from Moselle Shoals, where there is apparently more — though I have only seen granite there, but it is a very BIG area and I’ve only seen a small part of it. Some of my associates claim to have seen some marble on the Bimini Road, Raymond Leigh, Jr., among others. The marble at the “Architrave” (about 10 miles north of Bimini) is legitimate and “Classical”, from a temple on a ship called “the Glory of the Sea” that went down in the 1820′s.
“The problem with ballast and the column that was at Entrance Point is that it was once a government dock according to the local people. It would seem to have been strange to use it for ballast. MUCH of the ballast barrels are NOT concrete. Those Greg and I retrieved (mine analyzed by Dr. Robert McKinney, petrologist) was “caliche”, also known as “mudstone” and was absolutely NOT concrete — but was probably still used as ballast. They must not have done a very good search or sampling if they only got concrete. Here are the possibilities of the column that WAS off of Entrance Point. It was ballast, it was once at Moselle, it may have been from (or destined to go to) some part of the South [the southernU.S.], it is legitimate and from the Classical World. The marble on the Road is more likely Classical. Dr. Zink’s marble head does not look like Classical Greek or Roman, but perhaps it was Phoenician or Carthaginian? Atlantean? It MAY have been dropped there, but I seriously doubt it. Anything that’s fluted and looks Classical (and remember the Phoenicians and Carthaginians also imported such things) probably is — or is a copy.”
So there you have it, directly from someone who’s made dozens (maybe hundreds) of dives in the Bahamas. From my telephone conversations with him, I’m positive that Bill Donato believes there are ancient megalithic structures – or at least the remains of them – on the ocean floor around Bimini, Andros and elsewhere in the Bahamas. I recently had the opportunity to preview some side-scan sonar images from his November expedition and all I can say is that they’re truly amazing!