Examining the ‘Mound Builder’s Calendar Stone’ Part 5

Our examination of the Mound Builder’s Calendar Stone that appears on page 230 of the 1932 Sacred Symbols of Mu by my great-grandfather, James Churchward, continues with the response I received from the National Park Service.

From Sacred Symbols of Mu A Mound Builder's Calendar Stone Found in the Ouachita River, Hot Springs, Arkansas From Col. J. R. Fordyce, Little Rock, Arkansas

From Sacred Symbols of Mu
A Mound Builder’s Calendar Stone Found in the Ouachita River, Hot Springs, Arkansas
From Col. J. R. Fordyce, Little Rock, Arkansas

Links to Examining the ‘Mound Builder’s Calendar Stone’ parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six.

Nobody has to twist my arm to make me admit that my email to Tom Hill, Curator of the Hot Springs National Park was not only answered in a timely manner, but extremely thorough as well. My sincere thanks go out to Mr. Hill who went above and beyond the call of duty in his response to my request for information. Not only did he provide references to the ‘Calendar Stone’ in print, but also consulted with knowledgeable individuals and provided other links to real information about the genuine article. Until now in this examination of the Calendar Stone, it has relied on accounts by people that have never actually seen the original article.
One such reference is a description from the Newby Collection from Purdue University on the Arkansas Calendar Stone (thanks to again to Tom Hill and Meeks Etchieson, archaeologist with the United States Forest Service at the Ouachita National Forest):

Stone Calendar: Arkansas, USA 500 ad. – 1000ad.
approx. 15″ long x 12″ wide x 3″ thick,

Dark basalt in a tear shape form. Along the outer edge of the stone there are nine figures placed around thirteen rectangles that contains geometric designs. In the center there is a smooth flat plain with a shallow hole in the center. Ettween the point of the tear and the rectangles there are five phases of the moon in bas-relief and above the moons there is a design in the form of a mound that contains a dimond with a circle in its center.

Another reference provided by Mr. Hill (after contacting Dr. Dawn Bringelson at the NPS Midwest Archeological Center in Lincoln, NE) concerned an Aztec Calendar stone. This Calendar stone from the collection of the Peabody Museum of Yale University has no resemblance to the one contained in Sacred Symbols of Mu, but the photographs provided in the pdf downloaded from this link clearly show what an Aztec calendar stone looks like (as opposed to what some people claim.)
Due to copyright restrictions I am unable to reproduce any images from the downloaded pdf.

Additionally, from Mr. Hill’s email:

So I contacted Dr. Mary Beth Trubitt, archeologist at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, AR, and Dr. Ann M. Early, head of the Arkansas Archeological Survey at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville and State Archeologist for Arkansas. Dr. Trubitt had no information, but Dr. Early said she did not recall finding the calendar stone when she inventoried the Fordyce collection that the University received from the Museum of Discovery in Little Rock a few years ago.  However, she did say that she knows about the stone.  She explained that the Fordyce family collection kicked around in Hot Springs for many years before it was sold to the MacArthur Park Museum/Museum of Discovery, and it resided there mostly in storerooms (at least the stone artifacts did) for 50 years after that…

Dr. Early added that Sam Dickinson acquired John Fordyce’s archeological and historical files, and he eventually placed them along with his own in the Cammie Henry Research Center in the Watson Library at Northwestern State University, in Natchitoches, LA.  One can see a box inventory list of the Dickinson collection on their web page. There is one box labeled “calendar stone,” and it had a proviso that it was not to be opened till after Sam’s death. Sam has passed away, and when Dr. Early was in the center about 4 years ago, looking through the Fordyce papers, she took a quick glance in that box. The stone is not there, as she recalls. There were only some newspaper clippings and a few other documents, and photos, in the box.  There are a great many files in the Fordyce portion of the Dickinson collection, but Dr. Early only got to go very rapidly through about half of them.  She did not find a file of information about where Fordyce got the relics that he purchased.  She explained that Fordyce acquired pots, thousands of lithic artifacts, and many plains Indian ethnographic items.  Anyway, she says the stone itself has been around since the 1930s, but is clearly not an ancient artifact. Dr. Early is not sure where it is though, or if it still exists.

The final part of the examination of the ‘Mound-builder’s Calendar Stone’ covers a book that shows a photograph of the artifact and devotes a few pages to it.

Have a great day.

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