A couple with Native American heritage find what looks to be a Paleo-Indian ceremonial site in Virginia.
Concentric stone circles near rocks weighing more than a ton — apparently aligned to mark solar events — are believed to be part of a Paleo-Indian site in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Clarke County that an expert has dated to about 10,000 B.C.
The complex along Spout Run has 15 above-ground stone features. Though still under study, it could be one of the oldest man-made structures in North America still in existence and twice as old as England’s Stonehenge.
The story gets a little “mystical” in that Chris and Rene White, who own the property and made the initial discovery, “credit their Native American heritage for the finding“. Chris says he is of Cherokee descent. While walking his land, he felt that something was unique about a certain area. The article notes that he wanted to create a stone medicine where there. The medicine wheel is a monument made of a stone pattern in a display of sacred architecture. The spokes of the wheel point to other special places. But the area across the stream already had several concentric stone circles. The Whites then consulted an archaeologist to investigate. The small archaeological survey even revealed some artifacts, along with the orientation of the stone circle in alignment with astronomical events, suggests this was a spot where ceremonies were held. A sample of an artifact was sent to be dated which revealed the ancient age.
Sounds like a fantastic spot. But none of this has been confirmed and a large-scale survey has not been undertaken. There is no word mentioned about what will happen next. Will a university obtain permission to examine the site? Will the results be documented and published?
If any of our archaeologically inclined commentators would please supply any additional opinions, we’d be much appreciative.
Addition: Turns out this is not a new story. It was out in 2011. It sounds like White has big ideas for the site:
Not long after White finished building his house he shifted his attention to longer term thoughts about whether his land could play a role as a Native American Church. For years, White said, he had dreamed of creating a retreat center where all types of people could come to meet and discuss issues that concern Native Americans. To complement his Oklevueha Native American Church of Virginia, White decided to establish the Sanctuary on the Trail, a faith-based neighborhood and community outreach-initiative where spiritual leaders across denominations could meet to create possibilities for communities, churches, and tribes on challenges and issues facing them in a modern world.
They were looking for people to help preserve the site at that time. Where are the official reports then? Why hasn’t this been studied and published? So, for now we must take the claims of Hranicky with skepticism. They have not yet been soundly confirmed to be what he has said they are.