The Curse of Oak Island: Mining company finally gets the OK to explore the Money Pit

A close up of Doug Crowell at the Money Pit
Doug Crowell is eager for the Dumas mining company to recommence work. Pic credit: History

Last night, on The Curse of Oak Island, the Dumas mining company announced that they will soon recommence operations to dig out the garden shaft and get the team underground in the Money Pit.

Also, on this week’s episode, there was more evidence of a tunnel heading toward the garden shaft, and the origin of the mysterious Roman coin was identified.

The whole thrust of this year’s season was supposed to be the operation by the Dumas mining company to excavate and rehabilitate the old garden shaft. The plan was to dig out this old 19th-century shaft and make it usable again. Once it was fit to use, Dumas could then construct further tunnels moving away from the shaft if the team so desired.

So far this season, we’ve learned that the previously ignored garden shaft contains deposits of gold and may also be the focal point for a network of tunnels that the guys keep unearthing.

Marty Lagina and the team are starting to think this could be the location of the Money Pit. If Dumas could get them underground, then this would be the first time the guys would be able to explore the Money Pit below the surface.

However, no sooner had Dumas started work than they were then shut down by local government bureaucracy. Apparently, they didn’t have the proper permits, and there was no clue when these might ever arrive.

On last night’s episode, the team, along with representatives from Dumas, gathered in the War Room to learn if there had been any progress.

Excavation of the Oak Island garden shaft will continue soon

Cameron Carter from Dumas kept us all in suspense for far too long, as he seemed to twist and turn his words for what felt like an eternity before he got to the point. Marty looked like he was about to burst with frustration.

Finally, Cameron said that they expected the permits in a week. Hallelujah! Viewers could feel relief from the team coming through their TV screens.

Dumas initially stated that the project would take a few weeks, so barring any more nasty holdups, the guys may still be able to get underground before the end of the season. Fingers crossed.

Computer generated image of the garden shaft after excavation
Dumas mining company hopes to secure the garden shaft and allow for extra tunneling. Pic credit: History

This urgency to get underground was intensified when the borehole drill team hit a large quantity of wood at 93 – 95 feet. This appeared to be a collapsed tunnel, and it was at the same depth and trajectory as one they’d found earlier this season.

The guys concluded that this was the same tunnel and that it was heading straight for the garden shaft.

In the meantime, the team is still drilling into the “blob,” but as yet, still no gold. But it’s still early days yet in that area.

Update on the Roman coin found on Oak Island’s Lot 5

Also, on last night’s episode, there was an intriguing update on the Roman coin found by Gary Drayton on Lot 5 a couple of weeks ago. Doug Crowell and Alex Lagina traveled up to the University of New Brunswick to speak with a friend of the show, geochemist Chris MacFarlane.

Chris had previously helped the team place the south of France as the point of origin for the famous 14th-century lead cross. Now, Chris fed the suspected Roman coin into a laser ablation machine in order to analyze the isotope values, thereby telling us where it was made.

Luckily, Chris was able to get good data off the coin and was able to narrow its point of origin to the Iberian peninsula, so either Spain or Portugal. Both these countries were part of the Roman Empire for approximately 700 years, and the Romans did extensive mining on the peninsula, which was often used to create currency.

A Roman coin on Oak Island
This Roman coin was identified as originating from the Iberian peninsula. Pic credit: History

The guys were also intrigued that Portugal had popped up again. The west European country keeps cropping up in evidence connected to Oak Island. Last year, the guys even traveled to Portugal to investigate links between Templar knights and the island.

Marty posited another interesting theory about why they may have only found half the coin. He argued that maybe the two halves were part of a secret pact and that someone may have presented the coin as a way to identify themselves.

As always, the mystery on Oak Island deepens further.

The Curse of Oak Island airs at 9/8c on History.

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Joe Scales
Joe Scales
1 year ago

It’s no mystery. It’s no treasure. It’s half a coin found without archaeological context. Could have been dropped there at any time. Heck, you can find them on ebay for a few bucks. Even if there were a bunch of them, it wouldn’t be treasure. Unless of course you count finding someone’s penny jar treasure.

As for evidence of tunnels going to the garden shaft, all they are finding is buried wood from past fruitless enterprises on the island and making stuff up in its regard. Robert Dunfield dug up a pit there a hundred feet in diameter and more than a hundred feet deep back in the 1960’s. What did he find? Old wood and garbage from those who dug before him. Then guess what he did? He buried it all, as did the others before him. Again, there is no evidence whatsoever that anything was ever buried there. There just isn’t any valid historical context for assuming treasure exists on the island other than the fact that others had been misled for over 170 years by a silly, unproven treasure tale common to scams of the time.

1 year ago

I like the show but I can’t stand Jack and his girlfriend the metal detector. Too much of those two will make me puke