Joseph Robert Jochmans, Lit. D.
Walk into any modern museum, or open any history textbook, and the
picture of the past presented is one in which humanity started from
primitive beginnings, and steadily progressed upward in the development
of culture and science. Most of the artifacts preserved in archaeological
and geological records have been neatly arranged to fit this accepted
linear view of our past.
Yet many other tantalizing bits and pieces unearthed offer a very different
story of what really happened. Called out-of-place artifacts, they don’t fit the
established pattern of prehistory, pointing back instead to the existence of
advanced civilizations before any of the known ancient cultures came into
Though such discoveries with their inherent sophistication are well-
documented, most historians would like to sweep these disturbing
anomalies under the proverbial rug. But the rug of true history is getting very
lumpy, and hard to step across without tripping over such obvious
contradictions to the conservative picture of antiquity.
What’s more, the mysterious artifacts confirm ancient legends and stories
which describe human history not as linear, but cyclic. Forgotten ages and
former worlds rose and fell in great cycles of life and death over millions of
years, lost to our memory except in myths, and now, through a few amazing
pieces left to us. Here are the top ten out-of-place artifacts and what they
reveal to us about our missing legacy:
1. BAFFLING BATTERIES OF BABYLON
In 1938, Dr. Wilhelm Kong, an Austrian archaeologist rummaging through
the basement of the museum made a find that was to drastically alter all
concepts of ancient science. A 6-inch-high pot of bright yellow clay dating
back two millennia contained a cylinder of sheet-copper 5 inches by 1.5
inches. The edge of the copper cylinder was soldered with a 60-40 lead-tin
alloy comparable to today’s best solder. The bottom of the cylinder was
capped with a crimped-in copper disk and sealed with bitumen or asphalt.
Another insulating layer of asphalt sealed the top and also held in place an
iron rod suspended into the center of the copper cylinder. The rod showed
evidence of having been corroded with acid. With a background in
mechanics, Dr. Konig recognized this configuration was not a chance
arrangement, but that the clay pot was nothing less than an ancient electric
The ancient battery in the Baghdad Museum as well as those others which
were unearthed in Iraq all date from the Parthian Persian occupation
between 248 B.C. and A.D. 226. However, Konig found copper vases
plated with silver in the Baghdad Museum excavated from Sumerian
remains in southern Iraq dating back to at least 2500 B.C. When the vases
were lightly tapped a blue patina or film separated from the surfaces,
characteristic of silver electroplated to copper. It would appear then that the
Persians inherited their batteries from the earliest known civilization in the
2. THE STRANGE ELECTRON TUBES FROM DENDERA
In different locations within the Late Ptolemaic Temple of Hathor at
Dendera in Egypt are curious wall engravings which Egyptologists cannot
explain in traditional religio-mythic terms, but about which electrical
engineers are finding very modern interpretations.
In one chamber, No. 17, the topmost panel, depicts Egyptian priests
operating what look like oblong tubes, performing various specific tasks.
Each tube has a serpent extending its full length inside. Swedish engineer
Henry Kjellson, in his book Forvunen Teknik (Disappeared Technology),
noted that in the hieroglyphs these serpents are translated as seref, which
means to glow, and believes it refers to some form of electrical current. In
the scene, to the extreme right appears a box on top where sits an image
of the Egyptian god Atum-Ra, which identifies the box as the energy
source. Attached to the box is a braided cable which electromagnetics
engineer Alfred D. Bielek identified as virtually an exact copy of
engineering illustrations used today for representing a bundle of conducting
electrical wires. The cable runs from the box the full length of the floor of the
picture, and terminates at both the ends and at the bases of the tube
objects. These objects each rest on a pillar called a djed, which Bielek
identified as a high-voltage insulator.
The tube objects look very much like TV picture tubes, an impression which
is not far from wrong, for electronics technician N. Zecharius has identified
the objects as Crookes or electron tubes, the forerunner of the modern
Though the upper chamber scenes have been damaged by vandals from a
later age, other pictures found inside the crypt below the Holy of Holies are
almost perfectly preserved, and their portrayal deepens the mystery of the
strange electron tubes even further. Here, not only are the tubes shown in
full operation, but something else has been added which may suggest the
ultimate purpose for the tubes themselves. In several instances, both men
and women are shown sitting underneath the tubes, hands held out and
cupped, which meant they were in a receptive mode. What kind of radiation
treatment was being performed here?
3. THE ENIGMA OF THE ASHOKA PILLAR
A testimony to ancient metallurgical skills in Delhi, India is called the
Ashoka Pillar. Standing over 23 feet, it averages 16 inches in diameter and
weighs about 6 tons. The solid wrought-iron shaft is made up of expertly
welded discs. An inscription on the base is an epitaph to King Chandra
Gupta II, who died in A.D. 413.
Despite being well over a millennium and a half in age, the Pillar’s
constitution is remarkably preserved. The smooth surface is like polished
brass with only occasional instances of pock-marks and weathering. The
mystery is that any equivalent mass of iron, subjected to the Indian
monsoon rains, winds and temperatures for 1,600 years or more would
have been reduced to rust long ago.
Production of the iron and the techniques of preservation are far beyond
5th century abilities. It is probably far older, maybe several thousand years.
Who were the mysterious metallurgists who made this wonder, and what
happened to their civilization?
4. AN OUT-OF-PLACE COMPUTER FROM ANTIKYTHERA
A few days before Easter Sunday in 1900, Greek sponge divers off the
small island of Antikythera discovered the remains of an ancient ship filled
with bronze and marble statues and assorted artifacts later dated between
85 and 50 B.C.
Among the finds was a small formless lump of corroded bronze and rotted
wood. which was sent along with the other artifacts to the National Museum
in Athens for further study. Soon, as the wood fragments dried and shrank
from exposure to air, the lump split open revealing inside the outlines of a
series of gear wheels like a modern clock.
In 1958 Dr. Derek J. de Solla Price successfully reconstructed the
machine’s appearance and use. The gearing system calculated the annual
movements of the sun and moon. The arrangement shows that the gears
could be moved forward and backward with ease at any speed. The device
was thus not a clock but more like a calculator that could show the positions
of the heavens past, present and future.
It is highly possible that the device may have origins ages long before the
Greeks, and in a land far
removed, now unknown.
5. FLIGHT IN ANCIENT EGYPT
In 1898 a curious winged object was discovered in the tomb of Pa-di-Imen
in north Saqqara, Egypt dated to about 200 B.C. Because the birth of
modern aviation was still several years away, when the strange artifact was
sent to the Cairo Museum, it was catalogued and then shelved among
other miscellaneous items to gather dust.
Seventy years later, Dr. Kahlil Messiha, an Egyptologist and archaeologist,
was examining a Museum display labeled bird figurines. While most of the
display were indeed bird sculptures, the Saqqara artifact was certainly not.
It possessed characteristics never found on birds, yet which are part of
modern aircraft design. Dr. Messiha, a former model plane enthusiast,
immediately recognized the aircraft features and persuaded the Egyptian
Ministry of Culture to investigate.
Made of very light sycamore the craft weighs 0.5 oz. with straight and
aerodynamically shaped wings, spanning about 7 inches. A separate
slotted piece fits onto the tail precisely like the back tail wing on a modern
A full-scale version could have flown carrying heavy loads, but at low
speeds, between 45 and 65 miles per hour. What is not known, however, is
what the power source was. The model makes a perfect glider as it is.
Even though over 2,000 years old, it will soar a considerable distance with
only a slight jerk of the hand. Fully restored balsa replicas travel even
Messiha notes that the ancient Egyptians often built scale models of
everything familiar in their daily lives and placed them in their tombs,
temples, ships, chariots, servants, animals and so forth. Now that we have
found a model plane, Messiha wonders if perhaps somewhere under the
desert sands there may yet be unearthed the remains of life-sized gliders.
6. A JET FROM SOUTH AMERICA
In 1954 the government of Colombia sent part of its collection of ancient
gold artifacts on a U. S. tour. Emmanuel Staubs, one of America’s leading
jewelers, was commissioned to cast reproductions of six of the objects.
Fifteen years later one was given to biologist-zoologist Ivan T. Sanderson
for analysis. After a thorough examination and consulting a number of
experts, Sanderson’s mind-boggling conclusion was that the object is a
model of a high-speed aircraft at least a thousand years old.
Approximately 2 inches long the object was worn as a pendant on a neck
chain. It was classified as Sinu, a pre-Inca culture from A.D. 500 to 800.
Both Sanderson and Dr. Arthur Poyslee of the Aeronautical Institute of New
York concluded it did not represent any known winged animal. In fact, the
little artifact appears more mechanical than biological. For example, the
front wings are delta-shaped and rigidly straight edged, very un-animal-like.
The rudder is perhaps the most un-animal but airplane-like item. It is right-
triangle, flat-surfaced, and rigidly perpendicular to the wings. Only fish have
upright tail fins, but none have exclusively an upright flange without a
counter-balancing lower one. Adding to the mystery, an insignia appears
on the left face of the rudder, precisely where ID marks appear on many
airplanes today. The insignia is perhaps as out-of place as the gold model
itself, for it has been identified as the Aramaic or early Hebrew letter beth
or B. This may indicate that the original plane did not come from Colombia,
but was the product of a very early people inhabiting the Middle East who
knew the secret of flying.
7. CRYSTAL SKULL FROM ATLANTIS
Without doubt the most famous and enigmatic ancient crystal is the skull,
discovered in 1927 by F.A. Mitchell-Hedges atop a ruined temple at the
ancient Mayan city of Lubaantum, in British Honduras, now Belize.
The skull was made from a single block of clear quartz, 5 inches high, 7
inches long and 5 inches wide. It is about the size of a small human
cranium, with near perfect detail. In 1970, art restorer Frank Dorland was
given permission to submit the skull to tests at the Hewlitt-Packard
Laboratories. Revealed were many anomalies.
The skull had been carved with total disregard to the natural crystal axis, a
process unheard-of in modern crystallography. No metal tools were used.
Dorland was unable to find any tell-tale scratch marks. Indeed, most metals
would have been ineffectual. A modern penknife cannot mark it. From tiny
patterns near the carved surfaces, Dorland determined it was first chiseled
into rough form, probably using diamonds. The finer shaping, grinding and
polishing, Dorland believes, was done with innumerable applications of
water and silicon-crystal sand. If true, it would have taken 300 years of
continuous labor. We must accept this almost unimaginable feat, or admit
to the use of some form of lost technology.
Modern science is stumped to explain the skill and knowledge
incorporated. As Garvin summarized:It is virtually impossible today, in the
time when men have climbed mountains on the moon, to duplicate this
achievement…It would not be a question of skill, patience and time. It would
simply be impossible. As one crystallographer from Hewlitt-Packard said,
The damned thing shouldn’t be.
8. WHO SHOT NEANDERTHAL MAN?
The Museum of Natural History in London displays an early Paleolithic skull,
dated at 38,000 years old, and excavated in 1921 in modern Zambia. On
the left side of the skull is a perfectly round hole nearly a third of an inch in
diameter. Curiously, there are no radial split-lines around the hole or other
marks that should have been left by a cold weapon, such as an arrow or
spear. Opposite the hole, the cranium is shattered, and reconstruction of
the fragments show the skull was blown from the inside out, as from a rifle
shot. In fact, any slower a projectile would have produced neither the neat
hole nor the shattering effect. Forensic experts who have examined the
skull agree the cranial damage could not have been caused by anything but
a high-speed projectile, purposely fired at the prehistoric victim, with intent
If such a weapon was indeed fired at the man, then one of two conclusions
can be made: Either the specimen is not as old as it is claimed to be, and
was shot by a European in recent centuries, or the remains are as old as
claimed, and the marksman was ancient too. In view of the fact that the
Paleolithic skull was excavated from a depth of 60 feet, mostly of lead rock,
the second conclusion is more plausible. But who possessed gunpowder
38,000 years ago? Certainly not Stone Age man himself. Another race
must have existed, one far more advanced and civilized, yet contemporary.
The question is, where did that rifle-toting marksman call home?
9. THE INCREDIBLE STONE OF DR. CABRERA
Peru. Here are some 20,000 stone boulders, tablets, and baseball-sized
rocks, decorated with an astounding assortment of pictures, in many cases
very much out of time and place. The owner is local physician, amateur
archeologist and geologist Dr. Javier Cabrera Darquea.
Most material employed is a gray andesite, an extremely hard granitic
semi-crystalline matrix, that is very difficult to carve. But as Dr. Cabrera
observed, People have been finding these engraved stones in the region
for years. They were first seen and recorded by Jesuit missionary Father
Simon, who accompanied Pizarro in 1525. Samples were shipped to
Spain in 1562.
The stone portraits show very
sophisticated surgery skills and medical
knowledge, in some cases as advanced, and even more advanced, than
today. There are scenes of Caesarean sections, blood transfusions, the
use of acupuncture needles as an anesthetic (which only gained use in the
West since the late 1970s), delicate operations on the lungs and kidneys,
and removal of cancerous tumors. There are likewise detailed images of
open heart and open brain surgery, as well as 20 stones showing a step-by-
step heart transplant procedure.
This is a disturbing revelation in itself, that someone in unknown antiquity
achieved a level of sophistication rivaling our own. But there are other
pictures even more out-of-place. As Dr. Cabrera noted, and as has been
verified by other medical physicians, there are stone etchings which show a
brain transplant. The prehistoric surgeons, it is evident, possessed
knowledge several steps beyond modern-day surgery.
10. MANUFACTURED METALS MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD
For the past three decades miners at the Wonderstone Silver Mine near
Ottosdal in the Western Transvaal, South Africa, have been extracting out
of deep rock several strange metallic spheroids. So far at least 200 have
been found. In 1979, several were closely examined by J.R. McIver,
professor of geology at the University of Witwaterstand in Johannesburg,
and geologist professor Andries Bisschoff of Potsshefstroom University.
The metallic spheroids look like flattened globes, averaging 1 to 4 inches in
diameter, and their exteriors usually are colored steel blue with a reddish
reflection, and embedded in the metal are tiny flecks of white fibers. They
are made of a nickel-steel alloy which does not occur naturally, and is of a
composition that rules them out, being of meteoric origin. Some have only
a thin shell about a quarter of an inch thick, and when broken open are
found filled with a strange spongy material that disintegrated into dust on
contact with the air.
What makes all this very remarkable is that the spheroids were mined out
of a layer of pyrophyllite rock, dated both geologically and by the various
radio-isotope dating techniques as being at least 2.8 to 3 billion years old.
Adding mystery to mystery, Roelf Marx, curator of the South African
Klerksdorp Museum, has discovered that the spheroid he has on exhibit
slowly rotates on its axis by its own power, while locked in its display case
and free of outside vibrations. There may thus be an energy extant within
these spheroids still operating after three eons of time.
COPYRIGHT 1995. JOSEPH ROBERT JOCHMANS. ALL