He has set up a Facebook Group named "Locating the Oak Island Inscribed stone", in which the general public can submit leads on the stone's whereabouts.
One clue that seemed to be a dead end was made by Rev. A.T. Kempton in a letter written to Oak Island Treasure Hunter Frederick L. Blair, which he received on April 19, 1949. In this letter Kempton states that he learned that the stone was in the possession of the Historical Society in Halifax, but that he had not been able to find anyone there that knew about the stone. I myself had followed up on this lead to no avail. I read through volumes of Historical Society publications and found nothing about Oak Island in general, let alone about the stone.
It did indeed seem like a dead end. Now over a year later, there is a trail to follow which just opened up!
The lead was found in an old letter, which has been kicking around research circles for years, written by John Hunter-Duvar, of the Historical Society of Nova Scotia, to George Cooke, Oak Island Treasure Hunter back in the 1860's. You see, Cooke had just finished supplying a local newspaper with a three part history of the workings on Oak Island that was published in the waning days of 1863. Hunter-Duvar upon reading the story in the paper, immediately wrote to Cooke asking about the Inscribed 90 Foot Stone. His letter was dated January 2nd 1864, but Cooke was away and did not answer it until January 27th, 1864. This was Cooke's reply.
There is no known record of whether or not John Hunter-Duvar and the Historical Society of Nova Scotia ever got to see the stone, but if it was removed from the fireplace of John Smith's former farmhouse and taken to Halifax and put on display, I can't imagine that they did not get to see it.
The new lead comes from the dates of these letters. Hunter-Duvar dated his letter January 2nd 1864 and Cooke dated his reply January 27, 1864. The clue might not jump out at you until you know that today's Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society wasn't founded until 1878, fourteen years after Hunter-Duvar wrote his letter! This society has been in constant operation until this day. This would have been the Historical Society that Rev. Kempton visited. No wonder he couldn't find anyone who could tell him about the stone.
So if the current society wasn't the society who inquired, then who was?
The answer was found recently in legislative papers of the Province of Nova Scotia.
The founding members of this Historical Society read like a who's who of prominent citizens and political figures of that day. We find past and future Premiers of Nova Scotia, Supreme Court Judges, and even a future Canadian Prime Minister. Beamish Murdock wrote one of the definitive histories of Nova Scotia, and Thomas Beamish Akin almost single-handedly created the Public Archives that we know today. These men were all about preserving the history of Nova Scotia. If they were interested enough to inquire about the 90 Foot Stone, then they were indeed curious. Is it possible that they did indeed acquire the stone, and Kempton's information about a Historical Society having the stone was correct? Perhaps the stone yet resides in a private collection started by one of these gentlemen. All of the sudden we have multiple paths to follow up on. Let's see where they lead.
Goodnight from The Blockhouse!
From The Blockhouse
is published by Blockhouse Investigations and oakislandcompendium.ca
in Nova Scotia, Canada
Editors and Chief Correspondents
Kelly W. Hancock, CD
John Wonnacott, P. Eng.
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