by Richard L. Thornton, Architect & City Planner
The major mounds and stickball stadiums in the Batesville, Amy’s Creek, Amos Creek and Upper Mauldin Creek archaeological zones in Habersham County, Georgia are consistently 315 feet in diameter along their widest dimension. The Alec Mountain Stone Oval, overlooking Amos Creek is about 105 feet along its longer axis. That is 1/3 of 315. These dimensions suggest that a standardized, digital measurement system has ancient roots in the Southern Highlands and that its basic unit was 12 ½ English inches . . . 12.5 inches x 100 = +/- 105 feet x 3 = 315 English feet.
It is an established fact that when Savannah, Georgia was settled in 1734, the peoples of the Creek Confederacy had a writing system and standard units of measurements, plus were highly skilled land surveyors. In my book that makes them “civilized.” Eyewitness accounts by Supervising Trustee James Edward Oglethorpe and Colonial Secretary Thomas Christie, plus 50 years later, by explorer, William Bartram, confirm this forgotten aspect of American History.
During the 1700s the standard units of measurement in the Creek system were equivalent to 1.3”/3.3 cm . . .13”/.33 m . . . 39”/1 m . . . and 1300”/108.3’/33.02 m. They had a base 10 with a zero, while most indigenous American cultures had a base 3,4,5 or 20 numerical system with no zero. The Mayas did develop the concept of a zero in conjunction with their 20-base system, but they were the exception.
So far, I have found no evidence of the 18th century Creek standard units of measurement in the Southern Highlands. The Creek measurement system seems to have been based on the typical dimensions of an adult male. The Creeks of the 1700s were apparently a little taller than the people, who built the mounds in the Nacoochee Valley-Soque Valley area.
Precise measurement of these sites has been made possible by several birthday gifts this past summer from patrons of the Apalache Research Foundation. The donations enabled me to purchase (state-of-the-art) a laser measuring device, a GPS measurement devise, a mechanical magnetometer and a Geiger counter.
Status of upgraded video productions
I am almost finished with our first true movie. It is about our discovery of a cluster of large pre-Columbian structures in the vicinity of Alec Mountain in northwestern Habersham County. The movie includes eight videos of the individual sites with live commentary from me. I am just beginning to learn the complexities of the Corel Video Professional software, but this documentary will be vastly more professional than the previous videos created with Microsoft Moviemaker. I now have a state-of-the-art digital projector and HD size screen for giving public presentations. Several presentations are already scheduled this fall.
An Artlantis 2019 virtual reality upgrade for my old Artlantis software was purchased in late July. This software will enable me to produce professional quality animated films of ancient town sites. However, the dealer never sent me the license key. Each time I called, he was either in the emergency room, doctors office or on the way to the doctor.
After my 30-day trial period expired, he didn’t answer any of my telephone calls. I asked around on the net and discovered that the gentleman had died! I got my money back yesterday, but in the process discovered that Artlantis in France had refused to sell me an upgrade because I had one of the earliest versions of the software, which I purchased in November 2002. He took my money knowing this.
I pointed out to the people in France that I was evidently the first architect in the world to apply architectural virtual reality software to ancient town sites in the Americas -maybe the world. It was such a novel idea in 2003 that the Architecture Channel in England did a 30 minute program on my neophyte experimental work! Of course, this is now commonplace, but I was indeed the pioneer. That didn’t seem to matter. So, now I have the save up the rest of the funds required for purchasing the Artlantis 2019 full price. Alternatively, I am looking around for similar programs that I can buy for the same price as an Artlantis Upgrade.
That will happen, but possibly not until after it becomes Artlantis 2020. In the meantime, I have a lot to learn about movie making, so I won’t be bored, and have all that new technological equipment to utilize on sites. Thank you for all your support.
I didn’t realize how seriously injured I was after being electri-fried by ground lightning until I recovered fully last week. Just this morning I discovered that all of my lithium batteries had exploded in a metal cabinet, when the second bolt came through the floor, created ball lightning then punched a hole through my home office ceiling. Life is indeed a box of chocolates.