Recaps

The Curse of Oak Island: There’s disappointment at the Money Pit but hope on the mysterious Stone Roadway

Oak Island team members meet in the War Room
Members of the Oak Island team assemble in the War Room to discuss strategy and tactics. Pic credit: History

This week on episode 20, season 8 of The Curse of Oak Island, the team faced bitter disappointment in the Money Pit area as their hopes of finding the elusive treasure vault all but completely evaporated.

All was not lost, however, as the mysterious stone roadway continues to fascinate and amaze both the viewers and the Oak Island team. The mystery surrounding this rocky road just keeps growing and growing.

This season has been somewhat slow burn when it comes to the action; the late start due to COVID-19 coupled with the lack of a major excavation have all contributed to the sluggish nature of this season. And with the cold weather starting to close in, the season is already beginning to wind down.

This year, the guys have focused mostly on slow and steady archaeological digging in and around the mysterious roadway. There was some excitement in the last few weeks in the Money Pit area when they thought they were making progress, but sadly, this came to an end last night.

Terry Matheson and Charles Barkhouse had been tasked this season with finding the Money Pit using the borehole drill. They’d spent the recent weeks following what they thought was a tunnel at approximately 86 to 90 feet; they had hoped to follow it to the Money Pit.

Money Pit appears lost for season 8 of Oak Island

Unfortunately, on last night’s episode, they lost the tunnel.

With the drill pulling up nothing but mud and the end of the season rapidly approaching, it seems as though the guys have given up on the Money Pit, for now anyway.

As mentioned above, on Oak Island at the moment, it’s all about the archaeologists, particularly Aaron Taylor and Miriam Amirault, who have been giving the rest of the team a lesson in patience and painstaking hard labor. They have been gradually but steadily unearthing the stone roadway and trying to figure out its direction.

They have found an odd structure on the roadway, which so far is unexplained, but the discovery of charcoal suggests it may have been some kind of hearth or fireplace. They also found some hand-painted pottery. Hopefully, they’ll be able to get some dating of this stuff done soon.

Once again, Aaron pointed out how unusual it is that they’re not finding more artifacts. He thinks this is evidence that the folks who built the road were trying to hide their activities. It all adds to the air of mystery and intrigue surrounding the area.

Regarding the roadway’s direction, they’re now pretty much 100 percent sure it’s turning towards the island’s uplands, which is great news, as that’s where all the treasure is thought to be buried.

Stone roadway on Oak Island
The stone roadway continues to fascinate and confuse. Pic credit: History

Perhaps, the most interesting revelation this week came in the War Room when Craig Tester informed the assembled troops of some scientific dating results. The guys recently found a piece of wood under the stone roadway (probably used as cribbing to help hold the road in place), and Craig’s had it dated.

Stone roadway could be 300 years old

Intriguingly, the wood was dated between 1489 and 1654, and as it was found under the road, it can be assumed that the road itself is a similar age. That means it’s up to 300 years older than the discovery of the Money Pit in 1795. It also puts its construction at the very beginning of European exploration of America.

This episode ended with a huge amount of frustration over the elusive Money Pit, but the guys remained hopeful the stone roadway will continue to throw up surprises.

If the road is indeed 300 years old, its implications could be massive, and as narrator Robert Clothworthy suggested, it could change the way North American history is written.

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

Jerry Brown


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