By Lawrence D. Hills (1959)
July 1959- Vol. 12, No. 6
Here is a reconstruction of an amazing voyage that may have brought Cro-Magnons to American shores some 4,000 years ago.
One reason Cortez conquered Mexico with ease was the Aztec legend of strange white gods arriving from the sea. A dozen different tribes had such legends and many archaeologists believe that white men reached America before either Columbus or Leif Ericsson. Here Lawrence Hills marshals evidence to support his theory that they came in giant double canoes from the Canary Islands.
That this could have been done easily is indicated by the direction of the prevailing trade winds. Last December and January, the balloon Small World covered 1,800 miles by air and 1,200 miles by sea from the Canaries to Barbados in only 24 days. Its four occupants were blown over this route almost entirely by the same trade winds that would have carried the original Canarians centuries earlier.
The year is 1958 b.c. In Egypt the Pyramids have stood for over three centuries. In Crete the first good plumbing system in the world is operating. And in China, India, and around the Eastern end of the Mediterranean are men skilled in working bronze, copper, and gold, in writing, trading, and weaving. For the magic of metals, of the wheel and the turning shaft, harnessed first to the trade of the potter, have begun to change men’s lives. Read the rest of this entry »