Home Page Science Frontiers

No. 32: Mar-Apr 1984

Issue Contents

Other pages

Other Interesting Sites











Two Remarkable Inscribed Stones

The first stone is located in western Colorado on a remote canyon ledge, overlooking a broad valley with a stream.

"The dolmen is four feet across the top and has three placed stones holding it above the ledge in a level position approximately six feet from the cliff face. The Ogam on top of the capstone is intermixed with cupule-like depressions ranging in size from 7 "-9 " long, 3"-3 " wide and 1 "-1 " deep in the center. The cupule-like depressions are very striking because of their uniformity, smoothness, and peculiar shape. The Ogam on the side of the capstone is abundant and occasionally connecting with lines on the top. The surface of the dolmen was obviously smoothed and prepared for the inscriptions. The actual age is unknown but the desert varnish on the Ogam, the depressions, and the smoothed surface is substantial."

Colorado inscribed dolmen
The Colorado inscribed dolmen in situ.
The top is also inscribed.
Barry Fell has translated the markings, which in his view are in Arabic Ogam, as:

(Morehouse, Judy; "A Colorado Dolmen Inscribed with Ogam," Epigraphic Society, Occasional Publications, 11:209, no. 269, 1983.)

Comment. A photograph accompanying the article shows a striking artifact with strongly engraved markings.

The second stone was discovered at a petroglyph site in south central Alabama. This stone has an apparent jumble of scratches or grooves on two faces, which one might easily ascribe to plows. Barry Fell, however, considers them obvious Iberic letters. His translation of the Arabic:

(Henson, B. Bart, and Fell, Barry; "Inscribed Rocks in South Central Alabama," Epigraphic Society, Occasional Publications, 11:235, no. 274, 1983.)

Comment. The large number of North American sites with enigmatic marks documented by the Epigraphic Society elicits several questions:

  1. Are the sites and artifacts genuine? In view of the large number discovered at various times, in various places, by different people; some would certainly seem to be legitimate.

  2. Are the markings really ancient Ogam, Libyan, and similar brands of old writing? Admittedly, some grooves and scratches on small stones may have been created by random processes, but others, like the extensive series in West Virginia reported in SF#27, must be manmade. Comparisons with similar Old World inscriptions suggest that again the answer must be "yes."

  3. Were there really ancient Celts, Romans, Arabs, Egyptians, and other peoples in North America well before Columbus? The large number of old inscriptions would argue for a "yes," but one must also wonder what these old explorers or colonists did except carve symbols on rocks. Where are the expected artifacts, such as pottery, campsites, etc.? Certainly, the conventional archeological literature, which we survey, is devoid of any references to such artifacts. The data recorded above are certainly not being incorporated into mainstream science.

Reference. Many other enigmatic North American inscriptions are described in our Handbook: Ancient Man. Ordering information may be found here.

Insscrbed stone from Alabama. The upper, or principle, face of the inscribed stone from Alabama.

From Science Frontiers #32, MAR-APR 1984. 1984-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987