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Prehistoric forest discovered off Key West -- on sea bed (under 40 feet of water)
Keynews.com West -- on sea be ^ | Wed., Nov 13, 2002 | Mandy Bolen

Posted on 11/15/2002 4:34:31 PM PST by jimtorr

KEY WEST -- Research divers and marine archaeologists expect to find shells, rocks and remnants of shipwrecks when they excavate areas of the ocean bottom.

But pine cones, tree branches and charred limbs -- thought to be about 8,400 years old -- were an unexpected and intriguing treasure awaiting archaeologist Corey Malcom, who spent much of the summer underwater in search of the remains of the Henrietta Marie, a British slave ship that sank 35 miles off Key West in 1700.

In August, Malcom, who is director of archaeology at the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum, was joined underwater by George Robb, founder of RPM Nautical Foundation and financial supporter of the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Society.

Robb was diving in about 40 feet of water as the search for the remaining cannons and other parts of the Henrietta Marie continued. The divers had previously surveyed various sites with electronic equipment able to locate objects that lie covered in sand on the ocean floor.

1113 pine cone.jpg

Click for larger view.

DYLAN KIBLER/MEL FISHER MARITIME MUSEUM
Divers found prehistoric pine cones along with pieces of yellow pine trees thought to be about 8,400 years old and eventually submerged under the ocean with the end of the last Ice Age.

As RPM and museum divers checked out several "hits" that came from the equipment, they were particularly interested in one that was strong and a bit unusual. Upon first entering the water, nothing but sand was visible to them, so Malcom received permission from the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to begin excavating the area. Previous permits only allowed surveying and examination.

Divers cleared a 2-by-3-meter area on the ocean floor and carefully began sifting through a thick mud that replaces sand underneath the water. About 10 inches down, they found a few small, glass beads that led them to believe they were close to more Henrietta Marie ruins, as hundreds of similar glass beads have been found at the main wreck site.

As the divers continued to work, they laid aside black and gray rocks, thinking they could be ballast rocks from the ship, and still hoped for large pieces of the shipwreck.

"Then George Robb found a piece of pine that still smelled like pine," Malcom said, explaining that the workers initially thought the charred wood had been used as firewood on board the ship. "But as we continued to explore, it didn't feel like a shipwreck anymore."

The divers had wandered into a section of prehistoric Florida that had once been dry land during the last Ice Age, Malcom said.

When the Ice Age ended, the ocean levels rose sharply for thousands of years, covering much of the land in seawater and burying pine forests under about five feet of sand and sediment and more than 40 feet of water.

Radiocarbon analysis showed the pine cones and burnt wood to be about 8,400 years old, but the burnt characteristic remained a mystery until it was learned that the black and gray rocks also had been burnt and were identified by sanctuary scientist Harold Hudson as fire-altered limestone.

Hudson's theory was confirmed by geologist Eugene Shinn, leading the researchers to believe that a forest fire had, at some point, swept through the prehistoric forest.

While no signs of humanity were revealed in the initial findings, Malcom is not ruling out the possibility of finding some.

In the meantime, he is hoping to continue to work in cooperation with geologists and paleo-ecologists, who are more familiar with the underwater findings.

Representatives from the sanctuary also are interested in learning more about the land mass that once stretched more than 30 miles away from the shores that are now Florida.

"It's pretty incredible that the sea level rose that much, and definitely leads to some interesting questions that we hope people will pursue," said Dave Score, who works for the sanctuary and often deals with submerged cultural resources.

"Obviously, our focus is on shipwrecks, but I also think our mission was to discover, and we've certainly done that," Malcom said, carefully wrapping a pine cone in a saltwater-soaked paper towel until it could be properly conserved.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Florida; Unclassified
KEYWORDS: archaeology; catastrophism; economic; florida; ggg; globalwarming; godsgravesglyphs; history; keywest; rpmnautical
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I thought this would make a nice break from stories about stupid people in Florida.
1 posted on 11/15/2002 4:34:31 PM PST by jimtorr
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To: blam
ping
2 posted on 11/15/2002 4:35:30 PM PST by MaeWest
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To: jimtorr
Stupid people south of I-4. :-}
3 posted on 11/15/2002 4:41:27 PM PST by cksharks
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To: jimtorr
Nice break. I really like these types of stories.
4 posted on 11/15/2002 4:44:00 PM PST by umgud
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To: jimtorr
I wonder if this will be related to the recent findings off the coast of Cuba.


Prehistoric Pinecone

5 posted on 11/15/2002 4:46:28 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: blam
This would be before the last Shaw glacial lake flood at 5600 BC, but after the second to last at 9500 BC. Perhaps some more data for dendrochronology anyway.
6 posted on 11/15/2002 4:47:11 PM PST by RightWhale
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To: MaeWest; jimtorr; RightWhale
8,400 years old.

Interesting, I have some 7,000 year old wood dregded up from under eight feet of silt under Santa Rosa Sound in northwest Florida.

7 posted on 11/15/2002 4:47:33 PM PST by blam
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To: jimtorr
I think somebody dumped this stuff in the ocean rather than burn it or dispose of it "properly."
8 posted on 11/15/2002 4:48:37 PM PST by Contra
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To: Piltdown_Woman; longshadow; RadioAstronomer; Scully
It's Atlantis! No, it's the Garden of Eden! No, it's ...
9 posted on 11/15/2002 4:50:13 PM PST by PatrickHenry
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To: jimtorr
Bump For Science!
10 posted on 11/15/2002 4:51:16 PM PST by PureSolace
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To: PureSolace
m
11 posted on 11/15/2002 4:57:34 PM PST by Nick Thimmesch
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To: jimtorr
There ar acres of erect tree stumps from a orest somewhere off Virginia and I think Hatteras. It's a good lobstering area for dives.
12 posted on 11/15/2002 5:15:46 PM PST by RLK
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To: jimtorr
Those Prehistoric SUV's led to global warming, the oceans rose, and Oh! The suffering.

Oh, the humanity!
13 posted on 11/15/2002 5:22:35 PM PST by MonroeDNA
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To: Contra
I think somebody dumped this stuff in the ocean rather than burn it or dispose of it "properly."

I wonder if this was a big activity of the early inhabitants of Florida...
burning wood and limestone so that they could then get in a boat, paddle out and drop
them in the open sea waters.

Oh well, given the range of theology of the early American inhabitants, I suppose
anything is possible.

But for now I'll go with the burned forest covered by 40 feet of water in
about 8,000 years because it give the "man causes rising oceans" crowd fits.
14 posted on 11/15/2002 5:27:12 PM PST by VOA
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To: VOA
"I wonder if this was a big activity of the early inhabitants of Florida...
burning wood and limestone so that they could then get in a boat, paddle out and drop
them in the open sea waters.

That's cute. What I was really hoping for was for someone to explain how the forest fire started and then flooded, the events were apparently closely related in time. Some kind of catastrophy like a volcano or a metrotite. (a lot more interesting, huh?)

15 posted on 11/15/2002 5:47:09 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
The forest burned because the prehistoric enviro-whackos prohibited loggers from harvesting.
16 posted on 11/15/2002 5:53:25 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: NautiNurse
Good thing that was labeled, or I might think it was something else.
17 posted on 11/15/2002 5:58:11 PM PST by Dog Gone
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To: Dog Gone
Bad dog! I've been waiting for the Baby Ruth bar comments.
18 posted on 11/15/2002 5:59:45 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: All
When they find the match, call me.
19 posted on 11/15/2002 6:01:18 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: NautiNurse
"The forest burned because the prehistoric enviro-whackos prohibited loggers from harvesting."

So.... what caused the flood immediately after the fire?

20 posted on 11/15/2002 6:04:06 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
what caused the flood immediately after the fire?

The lost city of Atlantis created a huge hole in the ozone layer with their complete disregard for the delicate balance of nature. Not to worry--they paid for their sins.

21 posted on 11/15/2002 6:23:30 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: blam
So, what caused the flood right after the fire??

I'm thinking the mainland "collapsed"..a sinkhole type scenario and the two fire/flood events are not connected, just sequential. Just pondering possibilities.

22 posted on 11/15/2002 6:29:10 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Sacajaweau
Seriously, it seems there could be a connection between the finding off Western Cuba (suspect Atlantis), and this discovery. Fascinating! The dates certainly seem to coincide.

From The Search For Atlantis In Cuba

Atlantis was said to have been an island empire the size of 'Libya and Asia put together', founded by the sea-god Poseidon. It possessed a cosmopolitan metropolis, with palaces, royal courts, harbor works and waterways that constantly received sea-going vessels from afar.

For many generations Atlantis ruled the Atlantic Ocean as well as parts of the `opposite continent'. Yet soon the empire set its sights on controlling the lands inside the Mediterranean basin. It was at this point that the fair race of Athens rose up against the Atlantean aggressor and in a decisive naval battle defeated its enemy. Some time afterwards the god Zeus unleashed 'earthquakes and floods' that drowned the Athenian navy and submerged the island of Atlantis in one `terrible day and night'. The date given for this catastrophe is post 8570 BC in Plato's dialogue the Timaeus and 9421 BC in its sequel the Critias.

23 posted on 11/15/2002 6:48:52 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: NautiNurse

It's okay. It's a Baby Ruth.

24 posted on 11/15/2002 7:22:00 PM PST by nunya bidness
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To: PatrickHenry
Thanks for the ping :-)
25 posted on 11/15/2002 7:34:10 PM PST by RadioAstronomer
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To: NautiNurse; Sacajaweau
See there!! Now you're cooking. (you all expect me to do everything around, smile)..and now for my theory.

During the Ice Age, the Gulf Of Mexico became isolated from the worlds oceans by a 'dam' across Florida, Cuba and the Yucatan. Over time, the Gulf dried up some to a reduced, but stable, lower body of water. The Atlantaians weren't aware that anything was unusual and built a magnificent city on the Gulf coast, 2200 feet below the present water level.
Now, when the asteroid crashed into the 'dam' it ignited the volcanos on Cuba and reflooded the whole Gulf Of Mexico up to it's current level. The heat from the asteroid and the volcanos burned the forests and then the waters quickly cascaded in and covered them and the wonderful city of Atlantis.

In my next post, if you'll look around the Bahamas on the map that I'll link, you'll see underwater impact craters from the asteroid swarm that broke the 'dam.'

26 posted on 11/15/2002 7:52:27 PM PST by blam
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To: NautiNurse; Sacajaweau
Underwater Map Of The World With The Water Level Reduced By 310 Feet

Notice that the Red Sea is landlocked, there is no Persian Gulf and etc.

27 posted on 11/15/2002 7:57:02 PM PST by blam
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To: NautiNurse; Sacajaweau

Carolina Bays (More from the asteroid swarm?)

28 posted on 11/15/2002 8:01:24 PM PST by blam
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To: jimtorr; NautiNurse; Sacajaweau
Going Into The Water: A Survey Of Impact Events And The Coastal Peoples Of South-East North America, The Caribbean, And Central America

....and now, "you know the rest of the story."

29 posted on 11/15/2002 8:08:35 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
"What I was really hoping for was for someone to explain how the forest fire started and then flooded..."

The SUV did it.

30 posted on 11/15/2002 8:10:20 PM PST by okie01
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To: blam
Fascinating map! What is the significance of 310 ft drop in water level? Why did the feds pick that depth?
31 posted on 11/15/2002 8:17:14 PM PST by NautiNurse
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To: NautiNurse
"What is the significance of 310 ft drop in water level? Why did the feds pick that depth?"

I don't know why that depth was picked.

The experts say that the worlds oceans depths were reduced by 300-500 feet world wide during the Ice Age, most settle for about 400 feet. I use this map to begin to illustrate how different the world map was during that time. (Now, image another 100-200 feet less water. My guess is that the Mediterranean was blocked off also?) Sure explains why each culture/civilization has flood stories, huh?

BTW, The Red Sea may have broken through (reflooded) in 1628BC when Thera blew (earthquakes/tidal waves) and created the 'fireworks' for the Exodus and swept away the Egyptian soldiers persuing the Jews.

Can you tell, I like this stuff.

32 posted on 11/15/2002 8:39:20 PM PST by blam
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To: jimtorr
YEC bump
33 posted on 11/15/2002 9:23:38 PM PST by LiteKeeper
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To: JameRetief
Gods, Graves, Glyphs
34 posted on 11/16/2002 6:19:42 AM PST by blam
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Comment #35 Removed by Moderator

To: blam
Thank you for the topic list ping!
36 posted on 11/16/2002 6:44:48 AM PST by JameRetief
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To: rabidone
Creationists tell us that the world is only 7,000 years old. This story implies that this is wrong

Good observation.

Wrong conclusion !

37 posted on 11/16/2002 7:02:18 AM PST by netman
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To: PatrickHenry
Proving yet again that, "what goes up must come down".
38 posted on 11/16/2002 10:16:42 AM PST by Aracelis
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To: PatrickHenry
Thanks for the ping, Patrick!
39 posted on 11/16/2002 5:43:51 PM PST by Scully
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To: blam
Your link to the underwater map sadly does not work anymore. Do you know of a link to a similar site?

Also, I haven't studied the Gulf region very closely. Have you run across any information that would lead you to believe that a reducing environment may have existed in this area pre-impact? I seem to recall hearing that there was some indication of this from investigations of the cenotes in the Yucatan.

40 posted on 11/16/2002 5:51:12 PM PST by Scully
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To: Scully
"Your link to the underwater map sadly does not work anymore. Do you know of a link to a similar site?"

That's strange, it still works for me. I don't have another site.

41 posted on 11/16/2002 7:20:32 PM PST by blam
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To: Scully
"Have you run across any information that would lead you to believe that a reducing environment may have existed in this area pre-impact? I seem to recall hearing that there was some indication of this from investigations of the cenotes in the Yucatan."

Sorry, I don't have anything but claims of a 'city' 2200 feet underwater. I just thought that was to much for subsidence, so....I thought of other possibilities.

42 posted on 11/16/2002 7:23:04 PM PST by blam
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To: Scully
Here is the url for the map site: ftp://ftp.ngdc.noaa.gov/GLOBE_DEM/pictures/GLOBALsealeveldrop110m.jpg
43 posted on 11/16/2002 7:25:37 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Aftermath of the ending of the Ice Age....
Bush Administration has no plans concerning this according to administration sources....
Women, children, the homeless and Barbara Streisand suffer most....

Film at 11:00

44 posted on 11/16/2002 7:32:35 PM PST by KC Burke
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To: RLK
"There are acres of erect tree stumps from a forest somewhere off Virginia and I think Hatteras. It's a good lobstering area for dives. "

Yes...At the height of the last ice age the sea level was almost 400 feet lower than today.

On the mid-Atlantic coast, Native Americans almost certainly lived along the shores of Norfolk Canyon (then an estuary) far out on the continental shelf.

I have seen the tree stumps far out in the surf off the Va.-Carolina line... after a storm the sand is swept away exposing the old forest. Marl (a soft gray mud) is exposed with plant stems and roots.
45 posted on 11/16/2002 7:45:56 PM PST by edwin hubble
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To: blam
"Carolina Bays...."

This probably includes the largest natural lake in Virginia, Lake Drummond, in Dismal Swamp (about 25 miles from the ocean).

It is quite round and has a clay pan under it. I wonder if iridium traces could be found beneath.
46 posted on 11/16/2002 7:49:23 PM PST by edwin hubble
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To: PatrickHenry
It's Atlantis! No, it's the Garden of Eden! No, it's ...

Art Bell's retirement home!!!

47 posted on 11/16/2002 7:55:43 PM PST by WKB
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To: edwin hubble
"It is quite round and has a clay pan under it. I wonder if iridium traces could be found beneath."

Don't know. They have been arguing about their origins forever. Do a search on 'Carolina Bays' and you can review some of the arguments.

Did you get the link to the map to work?

48 posted on 11/16/2002 7:56:10 PM PST by blam
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To: jimtorr
Yeah, Florida is one giant limestone sponge covered with the black debris of Pleistocene fossils. When canoeing down the Peace River, notice the floor of the river. It's mostly black. The black material is bone fragments, shark teeth, manatee ribs, cat teeth, mastodon teeth, horse teeth, ray barbs, ray teeth (well, they're called that. They're more ridges.) etc..
49 posted on 11/16/2002 7:57:17 PM PST by aruanan
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To: blam
Underwater Map Of The World With The Water Level Reduced By 310 Feet

Hey, um Blam, the website states 110 meters. And last time i checked, 110 meters was 330 feet, give or take a few inches..

I think yer hiding sumthin'...

Pookie & ME

50 posted on 11/16/2002 8:00:26 PM PST by Pookie Me
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