To people outside of Canada, it is a country best known for its natural resources and outdoor attractions, but what least is known about Canada is that it is believed to be a buried treasure site. The Money Pit of Oak Island, interestingly enough, is a myth that was brought to light in somewhat of an accidental fashion and has since stayed in the minds of residents and anyone else interested in a good treasure hunting story. And why not? Who isn’t intrigued by the idea of buried treasure? It is probably these glittering hopes that continue to carry the story to this day.
The story of the Oak Island Money Pit began in 1795 with Daniel McGinnis, 16 at the time hailing from North Carolina, making his way to Oak Island on a fishing trip. It was while on the island that he discovered scenery that prompted him to believe that pirates searching for and/or hiding gold had once occurred here. Accompanying him through all of this were his friends Anthony Vaughan and John Smith. A first, tentative, attempt at excavating treasure was done by the three boys and then postponed for nine years until the proper equipment and measures were obtained. Interestingly, this second excavation attempt while not the most beneficial was actually the most insightful in hindsight.
Plunging deep into the earth a stone, amongst other interesting finds, was uncovered that, had it been properly translated, would have assured that treasure lay a few meters further. This attempt, however, had a devastating conclusion, as the digging hole became flooding making further excavation impossible. Since then further attempts have probably been made, but none have been successful, reinforcing the idea of a mysterious treasure. Also, other attempts may have been made, but Daniel McGinnis and his group has probably been the only ones to go to such lengths to discover this mythical treasure.
The Oak Island Stone
As per the legend, at 27.4 meters, the young treasure hunting company uncovered a stone that was non-native to Nova Scotia. Upon the stone was a strange inscription that they could not decipher. Later, the inscription was translated to read:
“Forty Feet Below Two Million Pounds Are Buried”
While some could say that the myth of the Oak Island Money Pit was born from the imagination of a 16 year old boy, it cannot be denied that some compelling evidence was discovered once excavation began. The Money Pit of Oak Island is consistent with all myths in that the stories and accounts of it lack consistency and are rarely ever agreed upon as a whole. The original story, if come upon, is itself somewhat of a patchwork. Despite all of these inconsistencies, like all myths, it has continued to linger in minds with growing curiosity.