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Help us with the Namakan Narrows Site.

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

The NamakanNarrows site is fascinating.  It has white images in addition to red ones.  It has a large number of images.  In spite of easy access and many reports, we found two hand  prints that to our knowledge have never been mentioned before.

But the most interesting part of the site is the story of the missing rock.   Dewdney, in his book Indian Rock Paintings of the Great Lakes, describes the site.  On page 41 Dewdney states:

“At Arthur Pohlman’s place I stared in undisguised amazement at a slab of rock from the Namakan site leaning against the wall of his garage:  painted on it a white moose and a red fish-like form.  Pohlman and his brother-in-law, Dr. J. A. Bolz, author of Portage into the Past, had found the 100-pound slab in imminent danger of falling into the water, had rescued it, and were only too happy to accept my offer to deliver it to the Royal Ontario Museum.  There the Namakan Stone now rests.”

We purchased a high resolution photo and the rights to print that photo for the Northwoods Pictographs bulletin about the Namakan Narrows site and the King Williams Narrows site.   In processing that photograph we found other images on the rock not described in the Dewdney account.  Those images are detailed in the Northwoods Pictographs bulletin.

We found in the Ridley Library at French Lake in Quetico, a photo taken very close up of the rock when it was still in place on the cliff.  However, the photo shows very little of the surrounding rock.  From the photos we have and from our visits to the sites we cannot determine with accuracy exactly where on the cliff the fallen rock was located.  Dewdney has a drawing in his book locating the rock just to the left of the white drum and drum stick currently in situ.  But there are intriguing questions. 

If Dewdney first saw the rock in Pohlman’s garage, what information told him the location on the cliff?  If Pohlman and Bolz found it ” in imminent danger of falling into the water” how did they know its location on the cliff other than concluding that it fell directly down from above?  Could it have moved sideways when falling along the rocks on the surface?

So here is the help we need from you:  Dewdney published in 1962.  Does anyone have a photo or photos taken prior to that time that shows the rock with its white moose still on the cliff.  Additionally, do you have a photo that shows enough of the cliff to determine the exact location of the fallen rock on the cliff?  If so, or if you know someone who might have taken early photos in that area, will you please contact us.  email  info@northwoodsmemoriesmmp.com or call 405-721-6474.

Thanks.  We will aknowledge  you!!