The Curse of Oak Island: Team asks if Templar Knights and Vikings both built 13th-century structures on island?

Rick Lagina in the Oak Island War Room
Rick Lagina listened intently to the views of Professor Gaspani during a meeting in Oak Island’s War Room. Pic credit: History

The Curse of Oak Island team learned that three stone monuments on the island were built in the 13th century, and the likely builders were the Templar Knights.

In another twist on this theory, a chance find of an artifact left the team wondering if the Knights had help from the Vikings.

Last week, the Lagina brothers asked archaeoastronomer Professor Adriano Gaspani to follow up his previous work on Nolan’s Cross by examining two more stone monuments.

Gaspani examined the positioning of the stone cairns on Lot 15 and the stone triangle on the southern beach and confirmed they were built in alignment with the stars, moon, and sun.

The professor declared that he was 100 percent sure the stone cairns were built in 1250 AD, and last year, he claimed Nolan’s Cross was constructed in 1200 AD.

Gaspani said that the know-how to create these structures could only come from someone with a knowledge of navigation, astronomy, and geometry. The builders created these codified stone monuments to act as pointers for only a select few.

Only the Templar Knights would have the ability to build such structures on 13-century Oak Island

The academic further argued that such know-how would only exist at that time amongst religious, monastic, or knightly orders, and at that time in the 13th century, the order of the Templar Knights was the most powerful.

Map of eastern side of Oak Island with stone monuments marked
Experts argue that Nolan’s Cross, the stone triangle, the stone cairns, and the paved area in the swamp all originate from the 13th century. Pic credit: History

Following on from the professor’s work, the guys sent in Gary Drayton to check the area around the stone cairns for metal artifacts.

Gary found a lead strip that looked to be decorated, one he suspected was medieval.

This artifact was handed over to archaeo-metallurgist Emma Culligan to ascertain its chemical composition and determine if it matched any other artifacts from the island. Unfortunately, this led to more questions than answers.

The piece in question resembled another twisted lead artifact previously unearthed on Lot 13. That artifact was determined to have originally come from Scandinavia. So, Gary, having been sent to look for Templar artifacts, may have found a Viking one instead.

An artifact found on Oak Island's Lot 15
This twisted lead artifact may originate with the Viking Norsemen. Pic credit: History

Oak Island historian Doug Crowell pointed out that the only group of Europeans that are known to have definitely traveled to America before Columbus were the Vikings.

They sailed there around the time the Templars were at their most powerful during the 13th century. “Perhaps they knew each other,” suggested Doug, implying there may have been a collaboration between the two medieval groups.

Oak Island team excavated the tunnel at the bottom of the Garden Shaft

Also, on last night’s show, the guys finally uncovered the tunnel at the bottom of the Garden Shaft. They unearthed a series of wooden rounded beams of differing sizes.

These beams appeared to be cut by hand, meaning they were likely older than the 19th century when mechanical tools for cutting wood became the norm. Roger Fortin estimated the tunnel was about five feet wide.

The team will get this wood tested to find out exactly what time period it came from, but they are pretty sure it is original depositor work. They are increasingly hopeful that a vast treasure lies at the end of this tunnel.

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

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