Did the Algonquian People discover Ireland?

Did the Wyandot People come from Ireland?

Part 14 of the Mesolithic Period in eastern North America

by Richard L. Thornton, Architect and Planner

Video Frame Above:  This is from an interview of Ambassador Therese Healy by KievPost, the international news service of Ukraine.  Note that Mrs. Healy has the flat face, wrap-around-eyes and pronounced cheek bones of an American Indian, but she would consider herself a “Black Irish” from southwestern Ireland.  In reality, she has the same appearance of a French-Algonquin Metis in Quebec . . .  a Gammel Folk woman in the mountains between Sweden and Norway or a mixed-blood Cajun in Louisiana.

There is something very odd going on along both sides of the North Atlantic.  It seems that the entire profession of linguistics has missed this mystery. That should not be too surprising. In 2006, I seem to have been the first person in history to compare Chickasaw, Koasati and the Creek language dictionaries to Itza Maya, Totonac  and Zoque dictionaries from Mexico.

You see . . . The suffix word for “people or tribe” is the same for Irish Gaelic, Scottish Gaelic, Breton, Manx, Old Norse, Zoque (or Soque in Georgia), Algonquian, Huron, Micmac, Lenape, Shawnee, Cherokee, Muskogee-Creek and some tribes in the Caribbean Basin.  It is written in these languages variously as ghe, ge, gee, ke, kee or ki, but universally pronounced as a guttural “K” . . . a sound halfway between K and a guttural g.  

My ancestors, the Itsate, Apalachete and Koasati Creeks, used the Itza Maya suffix for “tribe or people” . . . “tē.” The Chickasaw, Choctaw and Apalachicola, use entirely different words.

After proving with radiocarbon dating that indigenous peoples in Canada were building “stonehenges” at least 500 years (3,500 BC) prior to their appearance in the British Isles,  Dr. Gordon Freeman of the University of Alberta worked at several early “stone henge” sites in Ireland and Wales.  His team uncovered numerous artifacts, typical of the ancestors of an indigenous people in Canada 5-6 thousand years ago.  This discovery strongly suggests that the North Atlantic in ancient times was a two-way migration route.

The articles within the Mesolithic Series address the evidence of Indigenous North Americans settling in Europe then Sami, Nordic, Irish, Scottish or Pict colonists settling in the southeastern corner of North America.  Don’t visualize these immigrants as modern Europeans.  Geneticists have determined that the people of northwestern Europe during the Mesolithic,  Neolithic and Bronze Age Periods had dark complexions and black-to-dark brown hair. Some had brown eyes.  Others had blue eyes. They carried substantial Eurasian DNA markers. 

In addition to the Algonquians, we will also discuss their neighbors, the Wyandot.  Like the Uchee of Georgia, they Wyandot always said that their ancestors came across the Atlantic Ocean to settle in North America.  Most anthropological texts conveniently ignore this conflict with the Bering Land Bridge explanation to the peopling of the Americas.

The Algonquians

The Algonquian People compose one of the largest ethnic groups in North America.  In the 1530s, when the French first began attempts to colonize Canada,  Algonquin speaking tribes occupied much of the future Maritime provinces, New England, Quebec, southern Ontario,  the Mid-Atlantic states, the Great Lake Basin, the Midwest, Kentucky and even a part of North Carolina. Around 1600 AD, the Shawnee moved into western North Carolina . . . being so numerous in the Asheville Area that French maps labeled that region,  “Pays de Chouenons,” . . . Shawnee Nation.

Algonquian Migration Legend: The chronicles of the Algonquians state that the Lenape were the first of their people to migrate eastward from the far west. When they reached the Mississippi, they found the country east of it inhabited by a people called Talegi, Talligewi (Tallige- Place of) or Allegewi.  The Talege worshipped a sun god and lived in large towns.  They were a powerful people, but they were eventually driven southward by the increasing numbers of Algonquian tribes, arriving in the east.

First, let’s make it clear.  The Algonquian Peoples are American Indian tribes in the genetic sense.  Those originating near the Great Lakes do often carry the X gene, but as a whole, Algonquians do don’t carry the strange Pre-Columbian admixtures of Sami, Basque, Finnish, Northern Germanic and Karelian DNA test markers, found in the Southeastern United States.  In fact, when people in the eastern part of North America get a DNA test, their percentage of Native American DNA is determined by a comparison to a handful of Algonquian skeletons unearthed in northern Quebec.  That’s a problem if you are Creek or Seminole, because our ancestors came from Mesoamerica.  My first DNA test in 2005 classified me as a Mestizo from Mexico.  LOL

The Gammel Folk of Sweden

There is something unusual about the Gammel Folk (Ancient People) in the mountains between Sweden and Norway and the Black Irish.  The Gammel Folk look more like the Black Irish than they do the Northern Sami,  who also have Asiatic features, but more “heart shaped” faces.  Not only do the ancient peoples in the mountains of Ireland and Scandinavia look like the same ethnic group, but they often also have pronounced American Indian features.

Long ago, I had noticed a different “type” of people, while taking the train from Östersund, Sweden to Trondheim, Norway.  The rails climb up through the Scandinavian Mountains.  The people living up in the small mountain villages along the rails did not look like Scandinavians . . . more like mixed-blood Indians, but with more “chiseled” features than the Northern Sami, whom I had just seen in Lapland.  I asked a biology professor, sitting near me, who they were.  He said that they were the Gammel Folk . . . the ancient,  aboriginal people of Scandinavia.  

Earlier this year, we published a forensic model of a woman, who lived in Sweden around 2,000 BC.  That’s what the Gammel Folk look like.

The Black Irish

I did not realize how different “pure-blood” Black Irish look until 2011 . . . several months before “the Mayas in Georgia Thang” started. I wrote a very popular article for my column in the National Examiner on Duhare, a mysterious colony of Caucasian people on the South Atlantic Coast near Savannah.  This series will have a separate article on Duhare.  What caught the interest of European readers was that Irish language and history professors at Trinity College had essentially proven that the people of Duhare were Early Medieval Irishmen, who had migrated to the South Atlantic Coast of North America in the late 1100s AD.

RTE, the public TV and radio network in Ireland, eventually heard about the article.  They asked a female journalist from County Kerry, who was vacationing in the Caribbean, to stop by Georgia on her way home to do an article on Duhare.  She was to pick up a local film crew. 

She told me that it was worth the detour, because RTE essentially paid for her vacation.  She added though that she wished she had spent her vacation on the Georgia coast.  Its beaches were much prettier and cleaner than where she spent her vacation. Upon getting the assignment from RTE, she went to Savannah then filmed some pristine islands and beaches near Savannah.

Next, she rented a van for her and the film crew to visit me in the mountains.  I didn’t want her to know that I was homeless and living in a chicken house, so suggested that we film at a park in Hiawassee, GA with a spectacular view of Lake Chattuge.

I was shocked how much the Irish journalist looked like the mixed-blood Creek-Uchees in Georgia.  Because of the Uchee admixture,  Creek descendants in central and eastern Georgia look a little different than Muskogee Creeks in Oklahoma and Alabama. The women tend to have heart-shaped heads and be very gracile.  In fact, she was a “spitting image” of a young lady of substantial Creek-Uchee descent, who I dated my freshman year at Georgia Tech. 

Spectacular background in Hiwassee, GA for filming a TV interview

I asked Leona, if she was part Native American.  She told me that she was not aware of any close Native American ancestry, but she told me something interesting.  Throughout the centuries, so many Native American canoes had either washed up or paddled to the mountainous western coast of Ireland that there was a museum of Native American artifacts in her home town.   The small canoes tended to be empty or contain cadavers, but larger canoes could contain living occupants.  Sometimes the survivors stayed and intermarried with the locals.  Other parties chose to paddle back home.  Whatever the case, it is proof that transoceanic travel was possible . . . even after the last Ice Age, when the Atlantic Ocean rose and broadened.

Irish cultural history

Genetics has radically changed the understanding of early Irish history.  Some humans apparently at least visited Ireland around 40,000 BC . . . prior to the last Ice Age. The earliest definite inhabitants of Ireland arrived around 10,500 BC, but there is very little evidence of their presence until around 6,000 BC.  They well could have been American Indians or Proto-Sami.  Remember from our article on Windover Pond, Florida?  Currently,  the oldest surviving human remains in Florida from around 6,000 BC were found to carry Proto-Sami DNA.

A semi-agricultural people, who also raised livestock. arrived in Ireland and Scotland around 4,000 BC.  However, around 2345 BC,  it rained almost continuously in Ireland and Southern England for 20 years – virtually depopulating both regions, except for the mountain range in the western part of Ireland.  

It is now known that the Gaels originally came to Ireland from Galicia and Navarre in the northwestern corner of the Iberian Peninsula around 1000-600 BC.   Iberian-Celtic DNA is now the largest component of Irish DNA.

A second wave of Celtic people from the Atlantic Coast of France arrived around 100 BC then again after Rome conquered all of Gaul.  These later immigrants were highly significant to our interests.  They were the sea-going Gauls . . . but very possibly not ethnically Gallic.* They built massive ships with leather sails, not galleys or small cargo boats like the Romans normally constructed.  Their ships were capable of crossing the Atlantic Ocean or in open sea, out-running or crushing any Roman galley. 

*The Atlantic Coast Gauls used the word, ue, for water, which is also used in Muskogee-Creek. This evolved into the modern French word for water, eau.  In pre-Roman occupation times, most Gauls used either aiga or dour for water. Ue or uje was the Illyrian word for water.

According to Julius Caesar’s autobiography,  Commentarii de Bello Gallico, he ordered his navy not to risk open water combat.  Instead, he waited until most of the Gallic fleet was inside a harbor and there was no wind to push sails.  Without wind propulsion, the Gallic ships were helpless against Roman war galleys.  The sailors and then the ship builders in coastal towns were then slaughtered by the Romans.  The sailing ships, which were out at sea at this time, sailed to Ireland with those wishing to escape Roman brutality. 

The Wyandot (Huron)

The Wyandot lived along the St. Lawrence River and spoke an Iroquoian language, when first contacted by French traders.  Huron is the French nickname given them.  It means “boars head.” 

Until 1650, the Cherokee were vassals of the Wyandot and lived on the Great Falls of the St. Lawrence.  After the Wyandot first were decimated by a smallpox epidemic then massacred by the Iroquois Confederacy, the surviving Cherokees moved to what is now southern West Virginia and became associated with the Tionontateca.

Late 20th century and early 21st century archaeological research has placed the original homeland of the Wyandot in the mountains of northern Virginia and northern West Virginia.  It is interesting that the proposed Wyandot homeland corresponds exactly to the locations of several stone cairn complexes.

The Thunderbird and Flint Run Archaeological Zones are located along the northern Shenandoah River and are also within the proposed Wyandot homeland.  Thunderbird was a Clovis Culture flint mining and flint tool-making site in the period of 9500 to 9000 B.C.  High quality flint and jasper continued to be mined here after the Clovis Culture disappeared.  By 7500 BC, 

Archaeological excavation of a cairn complex near Winchester, VA in the early 21st century revealed that the cairns were used for cremating human remains. The bodies of the deceased may have been lain on the cairns first so that carrion birds, such as vultures, could eat the flesh.

Wyandot Migration Legend: The Wyandots still strongly remember their migration legend, since it is quite different than those of the Algonquians and Iroquoians . . . who both remember a long, icy journey from the west.  The Wyandot state that their ancestors came by boat over the North Atlantic Ocean.

[DeLisle Map – 1701] The note says that the Tionontatecas lived in man-made caves.


 *Note -This ethnic name has been shortened to Tionontati by Gringo anthropologists

Online references, such as Wikipedia, state that the “Tionontate were a branch of the Wyandot.”  I totally disagree.  They may have become allies of the Wyandot as was the case for the Cherokees, but they are clearly a tribe from northern Mexico.   A Nahua-speaking Chichimeca band, known as the Teonontateca, settled in the Valley of Mexico and eventually became allies of the Mexica (Aztecs) then was absorbed into the Aztec polity.  They even had their own temple in the city of Tlatalolco.  The name means, “God-Silent-People” in Nahua, plus the Algonquin-Gaelic suffix for people.  To Spanish missionaries they were known as “Pueblo del Dios Silencioso” or in English . . . People of the Silent God.”  Thus, they probably did not cross the Atlantic Ocean as the Wyandot claim.

In the 1600s, the Tionontatecage originally lived in the northern Shenandoah Valley, where they became wealthy from growing a tropical variety of tobacco, which was vastly superior to indigenous varieties.  They were more generally known to French colonists as the Petun Indians and as the Tobacco Indians by English colonists.  Rather than exerting much time on the growing of other crops, they traded the tobacco for vegetables, grains and meats acquired by other tribes.

Tiononatateca men in the 1700s

An unanswered mystery

This article has provided archival evidence of movements of people across the North Atlantic Ocean in both directions prior to the voyages of the Scandinavians in Greenland/Iceland and Christopher Columbus.  We still can’t explain why the same word for “people or tribe” is on both sides of the Atlantic.  It was spoken by many tribes, east of the Mississippi River and by peoples of northwestern Europe extending eastward as far as the coastal regions of Norway.  The word apparently originated in the Iberian Peninsula, where the Gaels lived prior to migrating to the British Isles.  That just makes the explanation even more complex.

The original, indigenous name of the Shenandoah River was Shanantoa. It appears to be the phonetic spelling of the Archaic Gaelic word Shionainn-toa, which means “Ancient River People.”

The Truth is out there somewhere!


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