Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Historical Note 1, The Old People

Old people ruins at Beatty Point, on the island's dry northwestern coast

New Island was uninhabited when Europeans arrived in 1799. The first settlers soon found out, however, that the island had once supported a vigorous and creative culture for probably thousands of years. These people were excellent stone masons who left impressive roads, castle-like towers, towns and harbors all over the island. These ruins gave the newcomers a chilling feeling that someone might still be here--but in fact they had all gone.

Research by the University of Putney Antiquities Department indicates the Old People left the island some 800 years ago. There are no signs of war or violence in their demise, they just simply left. The most likely cause could have been a drought coupled with a medical disaster. We just don't know.