Upper Peninsula Michigan copper deposits have been exploited by humans for 7,000 years. But if you have visited the area in the last decade, or watched a cable special on UP copper, you might come away with the feeling that some great controversy or mysterious and exciting story awaits to be proven.
Susan Martin of Technological University has helped us put things in perspective. Let’s summarize what we learn from the conspiracy theorists.
- Archaeologists and historians have no clue as to who mined most of this copper.
- The copper was primarily removed in a short time period.
- There is evidence of Vikings (Phoenicians, Visigoths, Chinese, Masons, etc.)
- The Vikings interbred with the Indians.
- Indians weren’t smart enough to value copper.
- Ancient Aliens provided copper prospecting assistance.
- A pygmy race of slaves was required to lift the ore.
- Masonic archaeologists scavenged and hid evidence of the Vikings years ago.
- Ten thousand pygmy Masonic slaves spent ten centuries in ten thousand mines removing 15 billion lbs of copper. (over 7 million tons)
OK, so what is the truth? The truth is that hundreds of copper mines have been discovered in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and on Isle Royale. There is real, scientific preservation required, as we should not rush to believe we know entirely why. But there is no genetic residue in the indigenous Americans of the Upper Peninsula that suggests that Europeans, Chinese, Phoenicians or Aliens from another galaxy occupied the lands and mingled with the locals.
The most important point is this lack of genetic evidence should not be used as justification to desecrate existing archaeological sites that should be investigated slowly and scientifically.
Scientists have carbon dated some of the mining activity to 7,000 years ago. Again, this activity cannot be traced to Masonic Visigoth Aliens from Pluto, it is most likely the activity of indigenous Americans from the Upper Peninsula area that learned of a malleable metal that could be found in veins of loose rock in the forests of Michigan and parts of the Ontario Province. Glacial action that diminished 10,000 years ago left moraines and for some reason, higher concentrations of copper were left in this reason. There is no evidence that the copper was put there by King Tut.
Archaeologically sound discoveries of many forms of stone tools have been found in the area, and the pits themselves. Unlike the cut and fabricated wood samples that are sometimes found in mines, stone tools cannot be carbon dated. Even the wood and carbon based remnants must be carbon dated carefully and with rigorous methods to achieve useful results. The wild eyed will pick a situation or type of stone hammer to claim that only Chinese Viking Zoroastrian pygmies possessed this type of implement, but there is not a scientific basis to such claims.
The copper itself in the upper Michigan region has been said to be the only copper in the world that has the same chemical makeup as is found in Spock’s lander. But smelted copper can be purified and then alloyed for many different purposes. For example, 7,000 years ago, the UP miners probably searched for ribbons of copper, not large globs, as they had not yet developed the means of turning a round ton of copper into knives and jewelry.
As late as the nineteenth century, boulders still existed in the region that were of extremely pure copper. The indigenous people had never melted them down. But sadly, most are gone now, lost to history. However, with careful survey many interesting copper boulders are likely still in the region.
One public repository of great native copper is the Michigan Techological University. In 2002 they acquired a 17 ton boulder from Keweenaw’s Great Sands Bay.