Rock crystal (Image: channelings, Pixabay)

Granite, Bimini, and Atlantis

Below is a post by Mr. Darby South concerning the occurrence
of granite stones and cobbles that have been found offshore of
North Bimini and are alleged to be related to the lost continent of
Atlantis. It is posted with Mr. South’s permission.

Granite, Bimini, and Atlantis

Re: Atlantis-any proof ?- The Granite Stones. Are They French?

From: southdar Date: 1995/12/11

MessageID: v01510100acf288261640@[] x-nntp-posting-host: x-sender: (Unverified) content-type: text/plain; charset=”us-ascii” mime-version: 1.0 newsgroups: sci.archaeology

In _Subject: Re: Need new challenge_, wrote;

…material omitted

>other divers on the site since 1971. Bill was there twice this >year. He does not believe that the granite stones found there >are local or natural. The find of the granite stones was >accidental by curious divers. A lab in Baltimore, MD, I was >told, decided that it was granite. He (Bill) and others who

………material omitted……………………..

While looking through the 1973 volume of Geotimes, I found that the nearshore of North Bimini Island is not the only place that an anomalous occurrence of “granite stones” has been noted. According to Ricco et al. (1973), an inordinate amount of rounded to near-rounded pebbles and cobbles of exotic composition were found when the I-10 tunnel beneath the Mobil River was excavated. The more abundant lithologies consist of rhyolite porphyries, rhyolites, syenites, granites, syenites, and orthroquartiztes In addition, nodules of black and light-colored flint and occasional clasts of volcanic breccias were recovered from the excavations at Mobile, Alabama. In addition, boulders and large cobbles of similar rock types have been found in Mobile Bay off of the mouth of Dog River about 9 miles south of Mobile and in the Tensaw River near the former site of Blakeley, about 10 miles northeast of Mobile. The nearest exposures of such igneous and metamorphic rocks lie a 125 miles to the northeast in the Piedmont region (Ricco et al. 1973, p. 19).

It is unnecessary to invoke a prehistoric Atlantean occupation of the Mobile, Alabama area in order to explain the presence of cobble- and boulder-size pieces of granite and related lithologies, e.g. rhyolite, in a region to which these rock types are completely foreign. Mobile, Alabama was occupied for 52 years by the French during the early 1700’s. During this time, Mobile was the port of call for a restricted trading network from which over a 100 ships sailed from France to Mobile. The ports from which these ships came, e.g. Rochefort, La Rochelle, Bordeaux, and Marseille, are mostly on rivers that drain volcanic terrains which contain abundant exposed igneous rocks such as the granites and rhyolites. These rocks would be part of the river gravels quarried for use as ballast in the ships transporting material to the Mobile area. Thus, the pebbles and cobbles of granite, rhyolite, and other exotic materials are ballast dumped at Mobile, Alabama by these ships. Similarly, the Mobile Bay and Tensaw River concentrations of exotic pebbles and cobbles occur at locations where ballast would had have been dumped in order to lighten ship so they could navigate either the Dog or Tensaw Rivers. Some of the chert nodules likely represent ballast left behind by English ships between 1763 to 1780 when the English occupied Mobile, Alabama (Ricco et al. 1973).

The granite cobbles found offshore of North Bimini Island might have a similar prosaic explanation. They could similarly have been transported to the New World as ballast in a French or other European ship. Then, the granite stones could have been deposited in the nearshore of North Bimini Island when this ship either was wrecked on its shores or had ballast dumped overboard to free it after a grounding. Thus, the presence of granite “stones” fails to be proof of the presence of Atlantean ruins lying off the coast of North Bimini Island. The transportation of exotic stones as ballast in ships has been documented in enough instances that it has to be considered a proven methodby which exotic material can be introduced into coastal waters.

References documenting the transportation of exotic stones and, even artifacts, are given below. For example, Glover et al. (1978) mentions English Paleolithic artifacts that were transported to Australia with chert nodule ballast. By careful analysis of the characteristics of the chert from which they were made, Glover et al. (1978) were able to prove that some artifacts that appeared to be such European Paleolithic artifacts actually had been made in Australia in prehistoric times. This is the type of careful work that would be needed in order to decide the origin of the “granite stones”.

A final problem is that exotic materials are being transported around the world and being dumped, lost, shipwrecked, and otherwise deposited all over the world. Just finding exotic materials someplace is no longer evidence of ancient cultures. The exotic materials has to be found in a stratigraphic context in which they can be dated. Otherwise, the syenite breakwater that the mayor of Grand Island, Louisiana is building on a small segment of its beach will become additional evidence of Atlantean civilization a 100 years from now when the Gulf of Mexico has consumed this island. Oh Yes! Are the granite stones French? Unfortunately, that is a question that cannot be answered at this time with the available evidence.

Reference Cited:

Glover, J. E., Dorich, C. E., and Balme, B. E., 1978, The Dunsborough implement: an Aboriginal biface from southwestern Australia. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia. vol. 60, part 2, pp. 41-47.

Riccio, Joseph F., Simpson, Thomas A., and Sutton, Thomas C, 1973, Igneous rocks in Mobile River. Geotimes. vol. 18, no. 12, p. 19.


Darby South Baton Rouge, LA

Other References (that illustrate the long-distance transport of exotic pebbles and cobbles as ship ballast):

Emery, K. O., Kaye, C. A., Loring, D. A., and Nota, D. J. G., 1968, European Cretaceous flints on the coast of North America. Science. vol. 160, no. 3833, p. 1225-1228.

Glover, J. E., Dorich, C. E., and Balme, B. E., 1978, The Dunsborough implement: an Aboriginal biface from southwestern Australia. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia. vol. 60, part 2, pp. 41-47.

Guilcher, Andre, and Battistini, R., 1953, La craie de Landeda (Finistère) n’est pas en place. Soc. Géol. France, C. Rno. 15-16, p. 304-305.

Mars, K. E., 1947, Ett blockfynd av kritformation i Kalix skärgård [with discussion]. Geol. Foeren. Stockholm, Foerh. bd. 69, h. 1, no. 448, p. 123-126.

Riccio, Joseph F., Simpson, Thomas A., and Sutton, Thomas C, 1973, Igneous rocks in Mobile River. Geotimes. vol. 18, no. 12, p. 19.

Tesch, P, 1952, De vreemde rolstenen aan de kusten van het KanaalLes ”galets exotiques” aux côtes du Pas de Calais. Geol. en Mijnbouw. Jg. 14, no. 1, p. 27-28.

Zandstra-J-G, 1972, De stenenvondst onder het Waterlooplein te Amsterdam. [Translated title The stone discovery under the Waterlooplein of Amsterdam.] Grondboor-Hamer. no. 4, p. 133-137.

P.S. This will likely be the end for the time being of my _Re: Atlantis-any proof ?_ series of posts. If anybody wants any one of this series, I have archived them and can e-mailed any one of them to you on request. Version 4.0

Dec 18, 2001 Copyright © 1996-2002 Paul V. Heinrich All rights reserved.