Viking relics need thorough review. Vinland lost and found. Nuns’ journey: fact or fiction?
The February-March 2018 edition of Canada’s History printed a feature titled “Finding Vinland,” which included a sidebar on an alleged hoax involving Viking relics found in northern Ontario on May 24, 1931. What is offensive to me, and to many other historians, is the bold employment of the term “hoax.”
I have been researching and writing about these relics since 1990, when I conducted a series of field searches to rediscover the site where James Edward Dodd claimed he had recovered them. In 1966, Douglas Tushingham, head of art and archaeology at the Royal Ontario Museum, pulled together all known facts about the relics and published a booklet titled The Beardmore Relics: Hoax or History? Tushingham concluded the booklet by writing, “opinion leans towards the view that their ‘discovery’ was a hoax.” He called for more evidence.
The discovery site needs a thorough excavation by a professional archaeologist. No one needs scavengers rooting around Dodd’s discovery site. Until such a dig is commissioned, I keep the location a secret.
Edgar Lavoie Geraldton, Ontario