Skip to comments.MICHIGAN MAN MAY HAVE TAPPED SECRETS OF THE ANCIENTS
Posted on 03/24/2004 4:56:10 PM PST by vannrox
But then, the blocks that Wallace T. Wallington moves around near his home in a rural Flint area have weighed up to nearly 10 tons. And by himself, he moves these behemoth playthings, not with cranes and cables, but with wooden levers.
"It's more technique than it is technology," Wallington says. "I think the ancient Egyptians and Britons knew this."
Last October, a production crew from Discovery Channel in Canada came to Wallington's home to record him as he raised a 16-foot, rectangular, concrete block that weighed 19,200 pounds and set it into a hole. That taping was made into a segment, which has aired on Discovery Canada and the Discovery Science program in the United States.
That project resulted in a column, standing more than 10 feet high in his yard. He says he intends to construct his own kind of Stonehenge -- without cranes or any modern engines or machines. He believes that's the way ancient people moved and constructed the great landmarks of the world.
"I call it the forgotten technology," he says.
He's posted clips and photos and information about his experiments on his Web site, theforgottentechnology.com.
Wallington's experiments and projects have attracted the attention of some physicists who discuss theories as to how the ancients moved and stacked giant, 30-foot blocks of stone at a time when there was no steel for cables or supports, let alone hydraulic devices for raising heavy materials.
The more far-out theories, espoused by believers of the paranormal, say that humans couldn't have done these incredible feats of engineering, so that it must have been beings from other planets.
Others think there must have been advanced civilization here on Earth that could build or erect incredible monuments such as the Easter Island statues or Machu Picchu, the great Peruvian mountainside architectural wonder.
Nonsense, says Wallington. "If we had these great advanced civilizations, why didn't we find any of their cellphones or laptops?" he asks with a smile.
Besides, if he can move and stand a nearly 10-ton block on his own, using only tools of wood and stones for fulcrums, then certainly the ancients, with thousands of laborers, could build the pyramids.
"I know how they did it," he says with absolute certainty. "I'd always thought there was a simple explanation, but it's really beyond simple."
Now he just has to convince the rest of the world.
"There's one guy who's published his experiments who says, Three men can pull a block weighing a ton,' " Wallington says. "But I can pull over a ton alone. I've moved 19,200 pounds, and I'm nowhere near the limit."
Wallington is a short, pipe-smoking, fireplug of a man, a carpenter by trade and a construction superintendent when he retired several years ago. He prefers not to say where he lives in the Flint area -- the TV producers, he says, advised him that he didn't want a bunch of people coming to his house once the bars close to see if they, too, could move concrete slabs weighing several tons.
Born in Detroit and raised in Utica, Wallington worked in construction for 35 years. He says he first thought about the ancient builders about 15 years ago, when he was working on a construction job.
"We were moving an existing floor," says Wallington. "I had to remove these 1,200-pound blocks of concrete. We couldn't get to all of 'em with our machine. I didn't really want to break them up, so I'd raise 'em with a lever and then tip them up and move them. I got to be pretty good at it."
That was the beginning of Wallington's thoughts on the engineering of the past. He started small, experimenting with blocks of concrete that weighed hundreds of pounds. But when he retired several years later, he really threw himself into his projects.
"At first, I brought a 1-ton block home from work," he says. "But I found I could move it around by myself pretty easily."
Then he started moving even heavier concrete blocks and columns, and then built a wooden device of two-by-fours he called "the Wallington lever" that he could saddle around the blocks.
Depending on the firmness of the ground, or by using a couple of rocks for fulcrums or swivels slipped beneath his blocks on hard surfaces, he could "walk" heavy blocks by pushing the arms of his lever.
Not surprisingly, his wife and his children thought he was crazy. "What's Dad up to now?" was, he says, a typical comment.
But Wallington also learned to raise a heavy column off the ground using a "shoring box" that allowed him to tilt it slightly and slip boards underneath it, one at a time. That let him elevate heavy blocks that would otherwise be impossible for one man to lift.
Having learned these techniques, he built a practice "mini-Stonehenge" of blocks weighing more than a ton, that he set up and raised without a pulley, hoist, roller or crane.
In an attempt to set a world record, he moved a 10,400-pound concrete column by himself, without any rollers. He even moved a large out-building for one of his sons.
"Yeah, it was a 30-by-40-foot pole barn," he says. "By myself, I could move it at about 6 feet per hour. With my son, we doubled that speed. We ended up moving it more than 200 feet."
In the meantime, his grown children did some research for him, gathering information about the pyramids of Egypt and other building marvels of antiquity. Wallington says that as he studied these, he became convinced he understands how these wonders of the world were built.
A couple of years ago, he posted a record of his experiments and experiences on the Web site created by his son.
"...There has to be a more accurate explanation," he writes about the construction of the pyramids. "I believe skilled individuals performed the work. I have found that this work could easily be done using only primitive tools and physics."
Between his Web site, the Discovery Channel segment and a video recording of his 2003 experiment (on DVD or VHS formats) that he sells for $20 via his "forgotten technology" Internet site, Wallington has gathered comments and kudos from various experts, authors and buffs interested in the ancient engineering.
One called Wallington "an original thinker." Another asked "has he figured it out?" referring to the engineering secrets of the past.
Joseph Turbeville, a retired professor of physics from the University of Southern Florida, called Wallington's videotaped project "an impressive undertaking."
"Every teacher of physics should make an effort to acquire a copy of this tape ..." wrote Turbeville.
What's next for Wallington? His project this year is for what he calls an "Egyptian hoist," based on experiments where he found he could pull as much as 185 pounds up a ramp about 26 degrees with very little effort.
He's stayed in touch with the TV producers who made the segment last fall about his raising of the nearly 10-ton column, and he expects they'll be back again to film his 2004 project. He says his family, friends and neighbors no longer are surprised at his experiments.
"Oh, I have a lot of nicknames," he says with a smile. "The Pharaoh. The Professor. Mr. Lever. The Man Who was Born 4,000 Years Too Late."
Not to be confused with the similarly named sexual appliance.
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