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clarkgoble

Horses in the Book of Mormon

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I was hoping to be at the Fair conference this week but work had other plans. The session I was most intrigued by was Wade Miller's this morning on horses. Was anyone able to attend? 

My guess is that the session was based upon his and Steve Jones work on dating horse bones that was published in The Lost History of Ancient AmericaWas anyone at that session and can confirm? The big issue, as I mentioned in the Heartland thread, is confirming who did the analysis and the results. The paper in the above didn't have that information.

 

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Apparently the guy that published "The Lost History of Ancient America" also published "The Atlantis Encyclopedia", so that's some top-notch company to keep in the field.

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1 minute ago, clarkgoble said:

I was hoping to be at the Fair conference this week but work had other plans. The session I was most intrigued by was Wade Miller's this morning on horses. Was anyone able to attend? 

My guess is that the session was based upon his and Steve Jones work on dating horse bones that was published in The Lost History of Ancient AmericaWas anyone at that session and can confirm? The big issue, as I mentioned in the Heartland thread, is confirming who did the analysis and the results. The paper in the above didn't have that information.

Even if someone dated horse remains to the right period, you still have the significant problem that Mesoamerican material culture reflects a lack of the presence of any beasts of burden. The highways of Central America were designed for human foot traffic and are unsuitable for horses or oxen or llamas. 

This is why folks like Brant Gardner suggest that “horses” refers to ceremonial “battle beasts” carried by royalty (I hope I have that right).

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

Even if someone dated horse remains to the right period, you still have the significant problem that Mesoamerican material culture reflects a lack of the presence of any beasts of burden. The highways of Central America were designed for human foot traffic and are unsuitable for horses or oxen or llamas. 

This is why folks like Brant Gardner suggest that “horses” refers to ceremonial “battle beasts” carried by royalty (I hope I have that right).

Yup. I agree. I'm pretty skeptical of this. It doesn't help, as I mentioned in the other thread, that Dr. Jones' reputation was rather tarnished with his connection to 911 Trutherism. This just isn't a good book to be published in either. A lot of it seems like quackery. Given that if the data were solid you'd expect the Interpreter to leap at publishing it there's something weird going on here. (Of course perhaps Jones is upset at how figures from the Interpreter have treated him in the past - I don't know)

For this to matter, as I said, he's got to establish who did the tests and when. 

14 minutes ago, cinepro said:

Apparently the guy that published "The Lost History of Ancient America" also published "The Atlantis Encyclopedia", so that's some top-notch company to keep in the field.

I like his bio. "He is the author of twenty books about prehistory re-published in as many foreign languages, including "The Atlantis Encyclopedia", "Opening the Ark of the Covenant", and "Unearthing Ancient America". Joseph is a frequent guest speaker at various metaphysical and archaeological societies in the U.S. and abroad."

Somehow I doubt by metaphysical he means discussing the works of Jaegwon Kim on physicalism.

Edited by clarkgoble

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1 minute ago, clarkgoble said:

Yup. I agree. I'm pretty skeptical of this. It doesn't help, as I mentioned in the other thread, that Dr. Jones' reputation was rather tarnished with his connection to 911 Trutherism.

Agreed. I remember there was a big deal a while back about horse teeth being found in a cenote (in Guatemala, IIRC) in a stratum of items that dated to Pre-Columbian times. Problem is that the teeth were fossilized, meaning they were fossils collected by these Pre-Columbian people. Every time there is some new evidence for horses, I am extremely skeptical because previous claims have turned out to be bogus.

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2 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

Agreed. I remember there was a big deal a while back about horse teeth being found in a cenote (in Guatemala, IIRC) in a stratum of items that dated to Pre-Columbian times. Problem is that the teeth were fossilized, meaning they were fossils collected by these Pre-Columbian people. Every time there is some new evidence for horses, I am extremely skeptical because previous claims have turned out to be bogus.

Jones in the 90's had a bunch of bones independently tested that were in various mesoamerican strata that appeared pre-columbian. From what he told me at the time they all tested as post-columbian. I don't know about this current work, but then he was actually careful to ensure no Mormons were involved the materials and that everything was documented. I believe these six new finds are in the US/Canada so aren't necessarily relevant to mesoamerican models.

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Just now, clarkgoble said:

Jones in the 90's had a bunch of bones independently tested that were in various mesoamerican strata that appeared pre-columbian. From what he told me at the time they all tested as post-columbian. I don't know about this current work, but then he was actually careful to ensure no Mormons were involved the materials and that everything was documented. I believe these six new finds are in the US/Canada so aren't necessarily relevant to mesoamerican models.

Same problem in the "heartland," as the material culture shows a lack of the use of beasts of burden. Either way, if these new finds turn out to be genuine, that would be quite interesting. I just don't have a lot of faith in these guys for the reasons I said.

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1 hour ago, clarkgoble said:

I like his bio. "He is the author of twenty books about prehistory re-published in as many foreign languages, including "The Atlantis Encyclopedia", "Opening the Ark of the Covenant", and "Unearthing Ancient America". Joseph is a frequent guest speaker at various metaphysical and archaeological societies in the U.S. and abroad."

Don't forget to include "Midwest coordinator for the National Socialist White People's Party" in that bio.

Colavito gives a decent summary of this guy, including his relationship to Wayne May.

Fringe History's Frank Joseph Problem

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Rajah Manchou said:

Don't forget to include "Midwest coordinator for the National Socialist White People's Party" in that bio.

Colavito gives a decent summary of this guy, including his relationship to Wayne May.

Fringe History's Frank Joseph Problem

Wow. Thanks for finding that. Not a good crowd Jones is mixed up with.

BTW - I'd somehow missed this which might be related to the presentation this morning I missed.

Recently, one of the authors (Miller) received results from C-14 dating of horse fossils. This material came from his field research in Mexico. A date of 2,540 years before the present was provided by the Radiocarbon Laboratory at the University of Arizona. This would place the horse in Mexico during the time of the Nephites.

That's referring to a BYU Studies article. I don't subscribe which is why I missed it. 

Edited by clarkgoble

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See "Were There Horses in the America's Before Columbus" by Dr. Steven E. Jones. 

     Dr. Patricia Fazio of the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming has joined our network of researchers in this field.  Dr. Fazio (private communication) alerted us to a horse bone found at Horse Thief Cave in Wyoming which dates to approximately 3124 B.P. (ie 1100 BC) using thermoluminescent methods. We attempted to have this bone re-dated using the AMS methods which are more accurate but there proved to be insufficient callagen in the bone to permit AMS dating.  The 1100 BC date, although approximate, still stands."

"A paper by Dr. R. Alison notes evidence for horses in Canada dating 900 and 2900 years ago, also in the period of interest."

~Tajara

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In my haste, I missed this from the same article...

"Thus there are a half dozen dated equus samples that date in the time frame 6000 BC to 1481 AD, well since the last ice age and all before Columbus.  Note that all of these radio-metrically-dated equus remains were found in North America."

~Tajara

 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Tajara said:

See "Were There Horses in the America's Before Columbus" by Dr. Steven E. Jones. 

     Dr. Patricia Fazio of the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming has joined our network of researchers in this field.  Dr. Fazio (private communication) alerted us to a horse bone found at Horse Thief Cave in Wyoming which dates to approximately 3124 B.P. (ie 1100 BC) using thermoluminescent methods. We attempted to have this bone re-dated using the AMS methods which are more accurate but there proved to be insufficient callagen in the bone to permit AMS dating.  The 1100 BC date, although approximate, still stands."

"A paper by Dr. R. Alison notes evidence for horses in Canada dating 900 and 2900 years ago, also in the period of interest."

~Tajara

Unfortunately, we can’t ask Dr. Fazio how she obtained these results, as she is deceased. And the only reference to Robert Alison’s article I could find was a dead link in an article by Frank Joseph. 

Edited by jkwilliams

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If you would like to read the entire article I am quoting from, it is Ancient American Magazine Volume 16, Issue #95.  :)

~Tajara

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1 minute ago, Tajara said:

If you would like to read the entire article I am quoting from, it is Ancient American Magazine Volume 16, Issue #95.  :)

~Tajara

I read it. 

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6 hours ago, jkwilliams said:

Unfortunately, we can’t ask Dr. Fazio how she obtained these results, as she is deceased. And the only reference to Robert Alison’s article I could find was a dead link in an article by Frank Joseph. 

Yup. The details matter. Although the mesoamerican bone that dated to the time of Nephi is intriguing. I'd love to know more details such as how they avoided contamination issues and what the size and other morphology was.

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14 hours ago, clarkgoble said:

Yup. I agree. I'm pretty skeptical of this. It doesn't help, as I mentioned in the other thread, that Dr. Jones' reputation was rather tarnished with his connection to 911 Trutherism. This just isn't a good book to be published in either. A lot of it seems like quackery. Given that if the data were solid you'd expect the Interpreter to leap at publishing it there's something weird going on here. (Of course perhaps Jones is upset at how figures from the Interpreter have treated him in the past - I don't know)

For this to matter, as I said, he's got to establish who did the tests and when. 

I like his bio. "He is the author of twenty books about prehistory re-published in as many foreign languages, including "The Atlantis Encyclopedia", "Opening the Ark of the Covenant", and "Unearthing Ancient America". Joseph is a frequent guest speaker at various metaphysical and archaeological societies in the U.S. and abroad."

Somehow I doubt by metaphysical he means discussing the works of Jaegwon Kim on physicalism.

Sounds like this guy should have his own show on the History Channel.

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On 8/3/2018 at 5:14 PM, jkwilliams said:

Even if someone dated horse remains to the right period, you still have the significant problem that Mesoamerican material culture reflects a lack of the presence of any beasts of burden. The highways of Central America were designed for human foot traffic and are unsuitable for horses or oxen or llamas. 

This is why folks like Brant Gardner suggest that “horses” refers to ceremonial “battle beasts” carried by royalty (I hope I have that right).

I do believe that Mesoamerica is heavily forested, while horses are primarily a plains animal in the natural context.  "The horse adapted to survive in areas of wide-open terrain with sparse vegetation..." (Horse - Wikipedia), thus horses in Mesoamerica would be imported from the north (if they existed up there, which they may have), and less common in the southern parts of Mesoamerica.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Stargazer said:

I do believe that Mesoamerica is heavily forested, while horses are primarily a plains animal in the natural context.  "The horse adapted to survive in areas of wide-open terrain with sparse vegetation..." (Horse - Wikipedia), thus horses in Mesoamerica would be imported from the north (if they existed up there, which they may have), and less common in the southern parts of Mesoamerica.

Just because the terrain does not favor horse Warfare or culture, does not mean the horse and mule are not useful. I am thinking of General Pershing in Cuba and in the Philippines. Indeed, the last cavalry charge in US history was in the Philippines. Juliann is absolutely right. We are in no position to have hard-and-fast rules in matters archaeological.

Edited by USU78

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3 hours ago, juliann said:

I didn't hear the talk. I really don't care if there were horses at any particular time period. However, over time I am more suspicious of hard line edicts because so many are falling by the wayside. The land bridge stuff about the only way migration occured always struck me as rigid and frankly, odd and sure enough, it has been re-opened to examination with more alternatives explored. So much of this kind of thing seems to be determined by forcing researchers to toe the established line. 

When this topic (or anything else that is essentially closed when legitimate researchers risk being labeled as wack jobs for violating concensus) becomes open to examination, I'll be more trusting. 

It’s not a question of hard line edicts but an acknowledgement that there’s no evidence thus far of horses in Mesoamerica, no remains and no impact on the material culture. It’s fine to hold out for new information, but skepticism is warranted. 

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Well I wouldn't say no evidence given that BYU studies article.

It's not violating consensus that is the issue though I'd agree. Rather it's the nature of the evidence. The problem with Jones' evidence is that it doesn't appear to be available for inspection and he published in a very dubious outlet which makes one skeptical.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, clarkgoble said:

Well I wouldn't say no evidence given that BYU studies article.

It's not violating consensus that is the issue though I'd agree. Rather it's the nature of the evidence. The problem with Jones' evidence is that it doesn't appear to be available for inspection and he published in a very dubious outlet which makes one skeptical.

Let’s say “no peer-reviewed evidence not associated with a white supremacist.”

Edited by jkwilliams

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2 hours ago, USU78 said:

Just because the terrain does not favor horse Warfare or culture, does not mean the horse and mule are not useful.

I didn't say that.  I said that the horse wouldn't have been found naturally there, and would have had to be imported.  There would be fewer there than on the plains, and thus opportunities for fossilization or preservation of bones would be reduced, which would explain why very little have been found.

2 hours ago, USU78 said:

I am thinking of General Pershing in Cuba and in the Philippines. Indeed, the last cavalry charge in US history was in the Philippines. Juliann is absolutely right. We are in no position to have hard-and-fast rules in matters archaeological.

I agree.  

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9 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

Let’s say “no peer-reviewed evidence not associated with a white supremacist.”

You're conflating the two. They're two different claims. One is Jones whose examples were in the US and Canada. The other is Miller who claimed a mesoamerican dated specimen.

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