The Miami Circle is an archaeological discovery that has raked up a lot of controversial issues since researchers under the Miami-Dade County's Historic Preservation Division excavated the site in June 1998. Bob Carr, The Director of the Division who headed the excavation and further research on the circle, has succeeded in gaining extraordinary public support to preserve the site…
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The excavation, conducted under Bob Carr revealed a patterned group of holes in various sizes cut into the oolitic limestone. This covered a circular shaped area of 38 feet in diameter. And the excavated earth contained various artefacts like shell tools and stone axe-heads. Other crucial discoveries included human teeth and charcoal from fires. According to the diary report of Ryan J Wheeler, one of the archeologists who participatred in the escavation, they also found
'.some concrete, modern glass, and other construction fill, lower portions produced nineteenth century materials, including the fragmentary neck of a blown green glass bottle and a wire-wound glass button, probably from a ladies' blouse or jacket. (Wheeler).
A controversy regarding the preservation of the site ensued, especially after the suggestion by Baumann to relocate the circle to another location for which he offered to pay the expenses so that he could pursue the construction of the condominium. But there was a general resentment among the general public which included archaelogists, native americans, new agers and school children. And the State the State of Florida Preservation 2000 land acquisition program had to purchase the disputed site from Bachmann for $26.7 million.
The radiocarbon dating, conduct...
However, the argument that the holes belonged to the modern age was further disputed by Tom Scott and Harvey Means, Florida Geological Survey, who brought to light the fact that there was a buildup of a calcite duracrust on the edge of the cut face, which cannot happen in the case of modern objects.
The artefacts that were found are supposed to belong the Tequesta native group which existed prior to the European settlement of the area. But to come to such a conclusion, other possibilities were to be discounted. There is no proof that native North Americans built such permanent structures so long ago. And the hypothesis that the site could have belonged to the Olemec or Mayan civilizations was more or less ruled out as there was no evidence of any artefact belonging to Cetral American origin on the site. According to Bob Carr, "Mayan architecture is always rectilinear, except for the observatory in the Yucatan, so really nothing about this fits a Mayan connection." He thinks that the references to Mayan civilization in this context are "just an exotic way to explain it." (Nimnicht). There exists an argument that the holes were postholes of some structure, some sort a foundation for a building. Another hint is that it could have been a burial site, but the excavators could find only a five-foot long shark skeleton, a dolphin skull and a complete carapace of a sea turtle. Apart from the four human teeth found on the site, nothing confirmed to the idea that it could have a common burial ground.
The controversy regarding the decision of the Sate to spend a phenomenal amount on the project reached its height with the hunch by the University of Florida archaeologist Jerald T Milanich that the Circle
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