The Curse of Oak Island: Who was mysterious landowner Samuel Ball?

Samuel Ball as shown on Curse of Oak Island
Samuel Ball was a former slave turned landowner. Pic credit: HISTORY

On The Curse of Oak Island, the treasure hunters led by Rick and Marty Lagina have often referred to Samuel Ball, a former landowner on the small Nova Scotian island. In fact, Ball could be a crucial key to solving the mystery of the legendary treasure rumored to be buried there.

Who was Samuel Ball?

The enigmatic Ball was a former American slave born in South Carolina in 1765.  Following the end of the American Revolution, the free man relocated to Canada. Ball went on to own property on Oak Island and reportedly went into farming.

In 1795, Samuel Ball married his wife, Mary, and the couple had three children, Andrew, Samuel and Mary. Ball’s will at the time of his death in 1846 indicates that he eventually remarried. His second wife was Catherine.

At the time of his death, Ball owned over 100 acres both on Oak Island as well as on a nearby isle. His wealth has led many to believe that in addition to farming, Ball actually discovered riches on Oak Island.

In Season 4, the show delved into Ball’s history in the episode, The Mystery of Samuel Ball, which explored evidence linking Ball to the Oak Island riddle.

Last week, the team had cause to revisit Ball’s contribution to the legend of Oak Island when metal detecting expert Gary Drayton and Jack Begley headed to Lot 25, once owned by Ball.

Gary told Jack, “I’ve been all over Oak Island,” but since the area has been cleared, “we’ve been finding some good stuff.”

When his detector beeped loudly, Jack shoveled the spot allowing Gary to find an intriguing lock with an old nail in it and a visible keyhole. “That’s amazing,” confirmed Gary.

Did this metal object come from a chest belonging to Ball? Or perhaps to soldier and privateer James Anderson, an American who defected to the British side and later settled in Canada?

Anderson sold Lot 26 to Ball in 1788, and the team visited a descendant of Anderson’s who showed them one of his sea chests along with a mysterious set of keys. Could this lock be from yet another of Anderson’s chests?

Either way, Samuel Ball is once again connected to the legend that is Oak Island. Will he prove to be inextricably intertwined with the solution to the Oak Island riddle?

Be sure to tune in and find out!

The Curse of Oak Island airs Tuesday nights at 9/8c.

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Lucy Parker
Lucy Parker
3 years ago

What happened to Samuel Ball’s children?