America's Stonehenge: A Mystery Set In Stone
Most people have heard of the Neolithic stone monument located near Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, known as Stonehenge. But did you know that we have what may be our very own group of historical stones right here in the United States?
Originally known as Mystery Hill, America’s Stonehenge is located in Salem, New Hampshire. It is a thirty acre area consisting of rock configurations, caves and chambers with its origins the source of much debate. There are large stones that align with solar and lunar occurrences and form a type of calendar. There is an area called “The Sacrificial Table” with grooved scores around the edges to collect and drain off liquid. Was this used to make soap, used as a cider press or for a water and crystal ceremony?
1907’s History of Salem, NH, is the first reference of the site in print. The site was known as Jonathan Pattee’s Cave as he owned the land and had a house in the woods. The land was noted as containing caves that the owner used for storage purposes.
H.P. Lovecraft visited the then “Mystery Hill” in the early 1900’s and is rumored to have used it as the basis for his story “The Dunwich Horror”.
Theories on who built in this area range from Native Americans, to Celts, Norseman and various other European populations. To date there are more questions than answers when it comes to this location and what it was actually used for. William Goodwin believed the site to be linked to Irish monks who visited long before Christopher Columbus arrived on our shores. He purchased the site in 1937 and dubbed it “Mystery Hill”.
Goodwin attempted to move stones back to their “original locations” and is responsible for much of how the location stands today. There are also drill marks from quarrying that took place.
The site has appeared in several television shows such as “The X-Files”, “In Search of” and a History Channel series called “Secrets of the Ancient World.”
Its possible that the site is a combination of Native American influences, colonial usage and amateur archaeologists at work here but we may never know the truth.
People will likely continue to come up with theories and explanations for the mysteries that lie at America’s Stonehenge.