QUEENSLAND'S SEA KINGS' ANCIENT SETTLEMENTS

By

"Awareness Quest" - Australia

 

EDITORS NOTE: Although this article refers throughout to 'Phoenician' colonization, it must be remembered that a large number of mariners were Northern Tribes Israelites, especially of Dan & Asher, who joined with the Phoenicians in their voyages of discovery.

THE FRESHWATER POINT SITE

The Freshwater Point Site - above photo: Sunmap. Old Dept Nat. Res. Scale 1:25000.

THIS complex was first discovered by Val Osborn in 1990. Almost a decade of research has indicated it to be a typical Phoenician Colony settlement of the ancient sea kings of around 1000BC. Such sites exist the World over and presently generate enormous controversy among historians and other academics.

Artifacts, inscriptions and ruins of harbours and settlements have been privately documented but ignored in the face of official Australian history and British policies. Similar sites exist around the North African Coasts with Carthage, an old capital and Tyre and Sidon, as Mediterranean capitals of the era 1500BC. The sea king trading era began with the Minos Kings out of Crete and Libya ending at Carthage, approximately 2000 BC to 400 BC.

Nothing further in international sea trade after the collapse of maritime history became evident until the 14th Century AD. A typical Phoenician colony was an isthmus, with freshwater springs, twin harbors built of stone set in furnace slag cement, houses of mud brick, with adjacent fields for crops of millet and barley. The
religious edifices were unique with Bel and Tanit shrines as God and Goddess, with a Tophet cemetery and also small shrines of sawn granite with a crude idol. The sea people were essentially traders in exotic wares and exported and imported also supplying navigators and shipwrights with a monopoly on maps, charts and navigation
.

Ezekiel 27 and 1 Kings 10 in the old Testament provide descriptions of the lifestyle, culture and cargoes with 3 year voyages utilising fleets; ivory from Africa, peacocks from India, marmosets from the Amazon etc. A mural depicting Queen Hatshepsut cargoes exists in the giant El Amarna Temple on the Nile from the same era. Australia was called Ophir or Big Java or the Aurea Chersonesus in old maps and was well documented. Black opal from Lightening Ridge and sapphires were found in Nile jewellery and Ophir gold highly valued in ancient times.

Egyptian, Hebrew, Phoenician and Ogham scripts are documented from sites all over Australia along with constructions, harbors and roads. At present the refusal to rewrite history has political overtones.

The Freshwater Point complex is uniquely Phoenician, as are adjacent sites on the Queensland Coast The two artificial harbors meticulously engineered are quite large and represent the labour of many over centuries. The East Harbour is keyed into a reef constructed of placed andesite boulders set in slag furnacecement with a back fill road of mined ore stone. The North Harbour jetty is of collapsed pylons of similar boulders set in gold slag cement, the pylons at intervals presumably once having a timber top. A quarried store chip road meets this in a triangle fashion. Adjacent to this ruined jetty are slag heaps from fumaces of gold, mercury and copper ore. Furnaces were small, of dolomite bricks of half cubit sized, reinforced. Evidence of refining exists on the Sarina
Inlet area with a sluice race and air artificial reservoir of water lined with clay, some 2 acres overall. A similar reservoir is found on the east Harbour complex along with a sluice and tilled fields adjacent. As the culture was always of mud brick housing, only retaining walls of stone are to be found to date.

The sea has eroded beaches and foreshores up to 80 metres in places and many parts of the site are now below the tide line, proving great antiquity. The minerals mined were gold, copper and mercury with dolomite mined for the fumace bricks. Intrusive hydro-thermal dykes, sills and stress veins occur from intrusive granite reefs - especially under water at high tides. Mining was carried out by heating the rock then quenching with water to crack the ore body, levering the ore out and then crushing and refining into ingots. Over 1 million tonnes of ore have been removed and processed with placer deposits carefully cleaned out. Beach boulders along with furnace slag were used to construct both jetties.

Three roads exist for loading of cargo, constructed of quarried ore body stone fill. The main ore bodies run NE from the headland and the rniners hacked deep into the headland to the bottom of the "dip". The hydro-thermal bodies still are extremely rich. A further bonanza for a colony could have been the wealth of cowries in the area, known as "money cowries", worth their weight in gold in antiquity. As well, Murex shells indigenous to Phoenicia and the Sarina area exist in abundance. From these shells, the famed tyrean purple dye was extracted.

Evidence exists of ore from off-shore islands also being processed here. In Sarina Inlet a Tophet cemetery along with the usual Bel temple exists with a boat yard and stone slip. Artifacts in cast iron have come to light here on the surface.

The Sarina complex is only one of many hydrothermal, highly mineralised sites on the central Queensland coast. The mining techniques were limited and are strikingly similar to other antique mines such as at the Zimbabwe Plateau complex.

Aboriginal activity is well documented in later times by aborigines demolishing walls to create fish traps etc. which raised the controversial question as to whether Australian aborigine tribes are remnants of colonies brought frorn Africa and India by ancient sea king expeditions. It follows that The Sarina complex is of vital interest to indigenous peoples and world historians.

The argument that James Cook "discovered" Australia is fallacious. His ship's log shows that he had maps. His instructions were to reconnoitre the coast for the purpose of colonising. The real history of Australia remains controversial.

INVESTIGATIONS:

The problem is not mere historical politics but the implications and repercussions relative to changing Australian history. Proof of settlements arid developments will change Palaentological history of aboriginal origins if evidence arises here of galley slaves utilised for colonisation. Therefore, it is expected that academic controversy will occur in any future investigation. Similar sites now being investigated suffer the same fate. The size of the site plus its locale makes it impossible to police or to protect. Its enormous implications require protection at this stage. At present it is at serous risk and automatically becomes a problem to Sarina authorities. Publicity can only attract vandals, treasure seekers and collectors of artifacts.

THE SARINA INLET SITE:

This area covers some 3 kilometres of coastline including the North Harbour refining complex. Here we have a shipyard with boat-slip, revetments, walls and gigantic stone fish traps - the latter now buried in siltation from coastal development The cemetery site is adjacent and typical of Phoenician colonisation. The Phoenicians cremated their dead, interred the bones in amphorae. The boat-slip shows indications of windlasses and a filled loading platform exists among mangroves. All sites are heavily overgrown.

The main village is presently not located, the entire area representing a giant isthmus and rich farmed soils indicate fields and gardens. Further sites nearby are being investigated. Rich soils indicating part ploughing and agriculture are found near the north reservoir and the east reservoir. These currently bog four wheel drive vehicles. A stone wail runs from the existing road terminus around to the reservoir, a sluicing site. The sluicing site exhibits collapsed stone walls running around to the mine site near the north point. Limestone pier footings are found along with rock wall that retains the silted reservoir. To the west of this wall, now below high tide mark, the smelting area exists with discarded ore pieces and slag heaps. The smelting area and slag heaps are presently one metre below high water mark, the erosion having eaten away the inlet beach adjacent - proof of great antiquity. The jetty pylons have disintegrated out of the slag cement over centuries, yet run in a
straight line some 600 metres in collapsed footings, through a stone cutting. Initially a quartz reef-gold bearing has been removed and stone cut out adjacent to a quarried stone chip filled road at the apex of a triangle. Slag heaps, now collapsed, are of mercury, copper and gold origins, greatly eroded. The harbour is of clean sand with a meticulously cleaned bottom adjacent the ancient jetty.

MINES:

Mining related to the extraction of quartz and calcite ores rich in gold, copper, along with meta cinnabar (mercury). Huge veins have been mined from low tide reefs extending back under the headlands. The main deposits existed on the northeast reefs below high water mark available at low tides. At the headland, the miners burrowed under the cliff faces, like rabbits, as far as feasible, for their fire and water techniques. The discard quarried stone was utilised to create roads and fill. Obviously carts and draft animals were used, even as Java buffalo were imported in the 1900s in early Queensland history, as draft animals. These reefs have been professionally hand-mined, walls and jetties carefully engineered. The stone crushed and refined on the north harbour site in typical Phoenician historical fashion. Blast furnaces constructed of refractory dolomite-slag brick were fed by wind funnelling oxygen from erected sails. The mercury veins and several gold veins exist under the present headland but much of the activity was done below high tide. The contact hydro-thermal veins were all extremely rich. A dolomite vein has been mined at the east of the promontory and recently in the 1920s, a tentative mine seeking gold and copper was worked on the south of the promontory. A rich epidote deposit exists on The SE point. These mining operations match those on the Percy Islands and other coastal islands and mainland reefs. A road of quarried chips exists to the south of Freshwater Point accessing a gold vein in gossans limestone. Microscopic analysis of the slag cements show varying batches of dolomite, gold dust, copper dust and mercury oxides mixed with furnace slag finely ground. This practice of concreting ceased around 200 BC with the introduction of Pozzoland and Portland cements. The absence of shell grits, muds of natural composition preclude any possibility of natural phenomena. Also, both jetties carefully engineered of tumbled granite boulders set in slag cement are in straight lines. Any inference of "natural phenomena" is therefore contradictory to known geological intrusions.

Also, portions of ore bodies from offshore islands found near the smelting site prove mining operations were broad-spectrum.

REFINING:

The quarried calcite ore bearing gold, copper or mercury along with quartzite were extracted from the metamorphic zone. It was then mortared by hand to a crushed dust, put through sluices to extract the fines, then packed into small brick kilns constructed of numbered reinforced bricks of refractory dolomite and slag in the usual small refinery manner. Dolomite was mined from the east reefs and ingots of metal cast as wedges or 'ox hides' were then packed in straw as ballast in Phoenician vessels according to tradition. Reject quarried ore was used to surface roads and landing areas as evidenced. Slag cement from the blast furnaces on the beach was recycled in jetty construction. In the east jetty, huge andesite boulders taken from adjacent beaches were set in slag cement presumably in wooden forms. In the north jetty complex, piers were constructed at intervals in the same manner. The Phoenicians were renowned for this type of unique slag cement construction. Always the furnaces were constructed for convenience sake on beaches The cement slag is today extremely hard, the Eddystone lighthouse in 1759 was build in a similar fashion by John Smeaton utilising Portland cement. A few old footings have been found of limestone concrete using shell grits. The andesite boulders used do not absorb water and are renowned for marine concrete application, unable to swell and crack the cement as the tendency is with other rock. These stones came from varying beach sites especially the north beach where they are conspicuously absent from the grading of this pebble beach. it is expected that other refining sites will turn up adjacent to other harbour walls such as at Avoid Island.

Hydro-thermal zones always provide huge riches at the surface. Where the veins dip beneath headlands, it was impossible for the ancient miners to go further, requiring explosives.

Brown millet has been found to the north relative to Mediterranean millet.

NOTES:

It is evidenced that the harbours were recently utilised at least in the last millennium, yet prior to Cook's arrival. Speculation now arises that the site was used for vessels utilising the ancient facilities. However, Australian history of the last 200 years shows no record whatsoever and local shipping records and news going back to Mackay's founding show no indication of any knowledge of this area as a harbour. Coastal packet steamers were ignorant of its existence, as are modern mariners including local fishermen. The present bitumen road access was constructed in the 1980s and Admiralty maps show the site as an island. Present mangrove and salt pan growth plus cane farm silt have literally filled the neck into an isthmus - as well as filling Sarina Inlet with huge amounts of farm and clearing silts.

Sarina Inlet is now inaccessible to shipping at low tides. The neck of the isthmus exhibits several freshwater springs as well as adjacent to both large reservoirs. These bubble up from cracked andesite intrusions.

The southeast high knoll has been systematically cleared of vegetation. Presently, has a small stone cairn, peculiar in that it has garden soil at its apex and has been terraced in beach stones.

Small walls of typical tumbled granite boulders (up to 1 tonne), set in cement occur in odd places around L1ewellyn Bay. They do not relate to recent fish traps.

The half cubit brick analysis of dolomite plus local crushed ore has measurements relative to the era 2000 - 500 BC, with a hole for typical rod reinforcing. It is a refractory furnace brick and was stamped by a stylus, the ancient Hebrew numbers "51" on its side. Similar bricks have been found. The cast iron tool found below low water mark along with a large rudder (Central Qld. University possession) is identical with the depiction of such boat building tools chiselled in stone on a Nile facade at an ancient Egyptian shipyard, alongside adzes, saws, chisels etc. Its use is enigmatic.

Sawn granite pieces were found on the east harbour wall surf beach. Handsaw marks identical to ancient Egyptian handsaw marks in granite indicate these pieces may have been part of a Phoenician aedicule (a small shrine dedicated to Tanit).

Granite pieces here show bollard marks from thimbles used in mooring vessels. Two pieces were found on east harbour wall surface. Aboriginal fish traps at minimum 150 years old exist all over sheltered water sites where local aborigines have recycled ancient stone walls. However, the huge areas of stone traps in Sarina Inlet now buried under silt would have sufficed in one day's catch approximately 500 persons. They are in much older order relative to marine encrustations. It is presumed from the enormous labour intensive constructions that approximately 500 to 1000 persons were present at anyone time in these mining operations.

SUMMARY:

The entire complex has suffered repeated cyclone activity and a great deal of erosion - proof of great antiquity. The annals of ancient history associate the names of Queen Hatshepsut of Egypt and Ethiopia, King Solomon of Israel and Hiram, the Phoenician of Tyre with three year voyages to Ophir - identified by historians with Australia in the era of around 1000 BC. In the era 90 AD, Ophir was stated by historians to be owned by India. In so much as great controversy exists, pertinent to ancient history, it is believed that excavations of the site will open old doors long shut and vent many similar artifacts and petroglyphs found all over Australia relative to Egyptian, Israelite and Canaanite history.

This site and other sites recently discovered point to an as-yet undocumented culture of sea trading by ancient Phoenicians and in as much as this site has not yet been excavated and existing artifacts have been collected from the surface, it is predicted that archaeological investigation may well re-write Australian history out of Sarina. However, the deep and abiding concern of people involved here is that the site may be vandalised.

The name derives from the purple dye of the murex shell used to create a "papal" purple. Originally sea traders from the Red Sea, they moved capitals to Tyre, Byblos and Sidon on the Canaan Coast and are referred to in history as Canaanites in Akkadian Scripts of 1500 BC on an Egyptian Stele at Memphis.

The early Mynos Kings of Crete and Lydia are also closely identified. Cargo vessels were built of Lebanon Cedar and Aleppo pine and Bashan oak. Large double
ended craft with square sails and up to 200 galley slaves at the oars. The Phoenicians monopolised the sea trade and were master mariners and navigators. Sufficient Phoenician Hebrew and Egyptian artifacts and inscriptions have been found all over Australia to prove a Mediterranean connection.

Cargo voyages took 3 years and one such fleet sailed to Ophir with Israeli overseers and Phoenician navigators as described in Old Testament annals, seeking a pure white timber for Solomon's Jerusalem Temple. As recorded by the Jewish historian Josephus in his histories. Identified as the Eungella white hazelwood (symplocus spectre) a giant native of Mackay and Fraser Island rainforests. Fraser Island timbers were used in antiquity and in the recent Suez Canal construction imported for pylons.

The Tophet and Bel temple construction also identifies the site as a Phoenician settlement, along with the unique smelting operations on the beach, exclusively Phoenician in history.

Dating is clearly of great antiquity as the north harbour beach has eroded up to 50 metres and the old slag-heaps, docks and furnace site are now a good 50 metres offshore and underwater on full tides.

The half brick is identified as pre-Roman in half cubit measurements. This also dates the site. The brick ceased to be used approximately 300 BC, the change to linear Roman measurements.

There is a possibility that the site was visited in recent times by Europeans but no occupation indicating such recent colonisation exists prior to Cook. Examination of records frorn the last 400 years of maritime history show no record of this site, neither was it visited by coastal steamers or fishermen in the early coastal settlements of the last century. It remained unknown and until recently was inaccessible from the mainland as an island and as isthmus. Early admiralty maps of the last century depict it as an island The description "Freshwater Point" is recent history.

ALTERNATIVES:

If it is argued the Dutch, Portuguese or Spanish cultures were responsible for the site; no trace of any such history exists in the last millennium. The Phoenician connection is the only logical conclusion to fit the site. Erosion of granite at the mine sites point to great antiquity in the polishing of the veins by sea action, along with the submergence of the slag heaps, collapse of rock walls and general erosion. Despite scepticism in accepted history, the evidence contradicts it and the huge amount of labour expended at the site, plus the similarities to known Canaanite colonies demand a change of current presumed histories.

DOCKS, WALLS, FURNACES ETC:

The north harbour has an eroded shoreline and over centuries cyclones have hammered at the site. This allows reconstruction of the walls at site A, docks at site B, furnaces at site C and slag heaps at D and B.

Rich sieved soil at site F up to one metre in depth presumes ploughed fields and cultivation. It is presumed that the village existed to the west to service the harbour. However, a freshwater spring exists at site G.

The huge outlay of labour required for the complex points to a large village somewhere, with the usual potsherds etc. To date, this site has not been uncovered; evidence of ploughed fields exists as well on the east of the peninsula.

Loose rock walls exist all over the complex with present regrowth as revetments and retainers and the two giant reservoirs originally lined with red clay from the southwest of Arrnstrong Beach Creek. The sluices run across the neck of both reservoirs and are hand constructed. Some stones on the jetties amount to two tonnes in weight and only can have been placed by block and tackle. It is impossible that such stones be lodged in such sites by nature. Evidence of other construction for unknown reasons is found in three circular depressions at the rear of the east jetty wall and at the boat slips back in Sarina Inlet. These may have been designed for derricks.

The extent of labour required to construct the walls at the north harbour alone has been estimated by a marine engineer at approximately 1,000 men working for one year. However, the richness of the ore bodies and gold placer deposits would have justified this outlay of labour. Subsequent removal of rocks up to a mere 50kg by aborigines to build fish traps has confused visuals sometimes, as well as scattering by cyclones resulting in slumping of many ancient walls.

Furnaces were small and traditional, of dolomite slag bricks, about 2 metres high, reinforced fed by sails funnelling oxygen to wood fires. Crushed copper, gold and mercury ores melt at low temperatures.

It should be emphasised at this time (August 1999) that no archaeological excavation has taken place and conjecture and judgement has been relative to visual sightings with few surface artifacts, as to be expected.

It must also be emphasised that the Sarina site is only one of many similar sites known to exist on this coast all retaining early Mediterranean overtones. At the present there are more questions than answers and the project is in its infancy.

ABORIGINAL IMPACT:

Ethnic groups from the Central coastal region have been identified by custom and physical attributes as originating from the upper Indus (Dravidian) and the African Congo (Negrito). As these gene pools are diverse controversy exists relative to migration and the accepted theory of a Borneo land bridge around 12,000 to 45,000 years ago. Today such theories are unacceptable. The pygmy Negritos became extinct around 1900 AD yet they were well documented by pioneers. The local Dravidian tribes have also become extinct. Both cultures were at war with each other at the time of European settlement. The evidence presumes that the Dravidian peoples were indigenous to this area, the Negritos to the north. Large corroborees were held at Sarina as late as 1860. The impact of aboriginal culture is self evident at the site and adjacent sites of aboriginal camps, one of which was situated on Arrnstrong Beach, the other at the southwest point of Petersen's Rocks where a shack was built in the early 1900s by a local.

Tumbled granite rocks were recycled from adjacent walls and beach deposits to create current fish traps, quite evident at half tides. However, as a fish trap to feed a tribe of 100 persons rarely exceeds the size of a normal house block, the gigantic traps in the west portion of Sarina Inlet, the largest known in Australian history (up to 10 acres) are designed to feed a much larger community. Contrary to general belief, marine growth only collects on fish traps in muddy estuaries and it takes centuries for oysters etc. to colonise the stones. Also, smooth granite is rarely colonised by marine growth. The giant traps in the north west are today buried in silt and only emerge after cyclonic floods. These adjoin the complex of walls, shipyard and slip-way.

The slip-way has a standard 15 degree slope, is heavily eroded and is backed by circular indentations indicating derricks or windlasses. The similar depressions in the front harbour wall may have been recycled as fish traps by aborigines. Circular traps are unknown elsewhere.

The difference in stone construction between aborigines and Europeans is self evident. The aboriginal saw no need to place one flat surface against another and had no knowledge of mortars. Latter day aboriginal occupation so evident would have removed any metals left over by the earlier culture.

Currently a large area to the west is being investigated seeking the original village site. On the southeast point of the isthmus standard size fish traps still exist along with an ancient dolomite and mercury mine. To the west some 300 metres the 1920s gold and copper mine, a very small 3 man enterprise, is to be located by a silted hole and some 3 tonnes of quarried copper tailings. This was anyway, an ill-advised prospecting site, but the miners must have had their reasons

Aboriginal artifacts are fairly plentiful, scattered about the complex.

The entire area shows clearing to have been undertaken in the past. Large softwoods relative to freshwater springs elsewhere are conspicuous by their absence. The present 4WD tracks through the complex show repeated bogging in the fine rich sieved soils. Obviously these areas have been cultivated in the past. Such soils are not to be found elsewhere along the coast. It is also known that an aboriginal camp existed at Plane Creek, Sarina and as well, at Arrnstrong Beach adjacent to Freshwater. However, no permanent camp was known to be at Freshwater Point and it is presumed the aborigines hunted there regularly.

It is contrary to known aboriginal cultures to have constructed such stone projects anywhere in Australia. It is also evident that walls were demolished by aborigines
to build fish taps.

In the annals of antiquity, especially Phoenician and Egyptian, Ethiopian slaves were prevalent especially as galley slaves on ships. The origin and subsequent transport of African and Indus tribes becomes a very real possibility relative to colonies elsewhere especially on the Australian coast known in antiquity as Ophir. The customs of east coast tribes show Mediterranean, African and Indian associations that have long mystified anthropologists and if the Sarina site proves to be Phoenician, then the origins of aborigines in Australia requires thorough reinvestigation.

The Phoenician cargo platforms are built the same way as they were at Carthage and Tyre. Beach boulders, preferably granite rounded by wave action, were set in forms and slag cement poured in. Timber was then set on top. The complex jetties at Sarina, one facing north, the other due east were so engineered. The east jetty has stones taken from adjacent beaches as does the north jetty. The difference is that in the former, stones are set in a reef of rock and back-filled to a level top with quarried stone. A large number of yellow dolomite fragments are present as fill, mined from the forepart of the sedimentary reef and from the south point of the isthmus. It is impossible for such tumbled beach stones to migrate naturally from the beaches and to set themselves in a straight line 600 metres long in a cement that analyses microscopically as slag cement. The east jetty construction was of pylons of such concrete, at intervals, now collapsed and eroded down to the base of the cement. The centre pylons have vanished from a line of some 800 metres of pylons set in a previously excavated ore reef. A rock cutting runs some 20 metres at the north end to allow for the jetty extension. Some stones weigh over one and a half tonnes.

It is possible for delta stones similar to this to deposit themselves in mud at river mouths but these originate in adjacent beaches and are set in varying batches of slag cement, matching pieces of slag cement nearby, showing traces of gold, copper and mercury under analysis. Also, it is obvious that the stones were fitted in places. Both jetties submerge some 1 metre at high tide at present. An eroded curved runway exists at the base of the north jetty for cart loading. A metal detector search proved futile as the entire complex is highly mineralised. The fill used on these jetties for ramps and roads is of quarried stone from the mines and readily matched.

The entire area represents an enormous amount of stone and fill and labour with an astonishing amount of ore body cut out and duly processed. Such labour intensive activity requires a large work force.

FOOD SUPPLIES:

While the giant buried fish traps in Sarina Inlet silts would have yielded prolific catches in antiquity and it is known that Phoenicians fed slaves on the marine products, they also ate millet and barley in their diet and historians speak of them planting crops on their famed three year voyages.

The richness of soils devoid of rubble, adjacent to the reservoirs with present thick grass overgrowth point to agriculture on a fairly large scale, up to 50 acres. Timber was originally prolific in a rainforest spring environment but would have been quickly stripped for fires and furnaces. The absence of old rainforest timbers is a conspicuous feature with new growth only now appearing. Rainforests once stripped, rarely recover. The present biota of wild foods is an indication of past abundance. The fish stocks of the past century were phenomenal as testified in recorded history.

As millet has been found to the north among wild grasses, it is expected to turn up here as well. Some odd fruit tees have been noted, not Australian natives, and early explorers noted nutmeg, pepper and plantains etc.

SHIPS AND COLONIES:

The colonies of Hanno, the Phoenician, are recorded on a stele at Carthage, a latter day outpost. Hanno was banished with his relatives for failing to win a war. His emigration consisted of 60 vessels and 30,000 settlers, some 500 per vessel, in 425 BC, to the west coast of Africa. He took his settlers to found new city states.

Pharaoh Necho hired the Phoenicians to circumnavigate Africa and Darius the Mede hired their ships and mercenaries. Trade and import/export maritime activities were the monopoly of Phoenicians, especially in metals and gems. The Hanno expedition gives a glimpse of the fading Phoenician Empire in its last stages. Some 500 years previous to Hanno, King Solomon sent his Hebrew overseers with a fleet of Phoenicians to Ophir on a 3 year voyage who retumed with 200 tonnes of gold. Sadly, Phoenician history is sparse and maritime trade collapsed with the loss of library maps and navigators. The trade did not revive until the 14th Century AD. Considering that the Babylonian Empire rose after the Phoenician Empire fell, any evidences will be sparse in ancient colonies. The Libyan colonies bear startling similarities to the Sarina site; however, archaeologists find typical Phoenician colonies distinct from any other. It is expected that excavations at Sarina will link up with other Australian sites, artifacts, glyphs and constructions, already documented and awaiting research.

APPENDIX/NOTES:

A. An analysis of the slag cement of the east harbour wall proves that iron smelting, suspected in the odd pieces of pig iron slag found, was carried out here. The ore came from Red Clay Island or Iron Island, some 60 km to the south east. Here, huge deposits of high grade steel ores are the composition of a massive island and fine beads of native iron are unique to the island. The same tiny globules appear in analysis of the slag cement utilised to set granite boulders in the harbour wall -along with fragments of flake pig iron and dolomite. The original ore was magnetic, the flakes are now highly magnetic. This proves a refining process with crushed dolomite used. Iron in pig iron form, is depicted in El Amarna Egyptian murals and in 1000 BC was as expensive as gold. Damascus was owned by Phoenicians and renowned for Damascus steel

B. Analysis of the stone used at the Tophet cemetery proves it came from Armstrong Beach at the south end from an outcrop of pyroclastic rock of distinctive formation. Why such large cartloads of rock should have been carted some 6 km is unclear unless the area was also mined - a distinct possibility.

GEOLOGY:

The geology within Sarina shire embraces almost every variation of rock development and mineral formation known to science. Simply put, it is astonishing and as yet undocumented. Some 30 metres of sediments sit on metamorphic igneous intrusion in a marine coastal environment. Once Sarina town was a low-lying beach of pebble adjacent to coral atolls and reefs. Upwelling magma created volcanic plugs that here and there did not reach the surface in many places, creating a complexity of sills, intrusions in an explosion of hydro-thermal activity. Rare earths exist in the ancient sediments as well. The present coastal range, once a beach and headlands rose along with up thrust limestone coral reefs and igneous intrusions fissured by earthquakes and gases. The result is a geology student's dream/nightmare Guided tours could be formulated for tourists and academics relative to the sheer diversity on offer. Very rare minerals are present along with rare metals and tiny gemstones. The entire area is known to be an unexploited gold and silver field. Granite lava contact metamorphic reefs rise vertically, especially offshore. In future authorities must decide between the values of tourism or industrial development. The spectacular island formations are of enormous heritage values relative to future tourism.

Val Osborn can be contacted at: 72 Armstrong Beach Road, Sarina, QLD 4737. or by contacting - osbornruth1@bigpond.com

By 'Awareness Quest'
Australian Archaeological Anomalies Research

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