New Hampshire has a rich history. As one of the original colonies, the Granite State was one of the first places that Americans called home. But just how far back does our history stretch? An eerie, spooky archeological site on Mystery Hill in Salem may hold the answer.
Or, America’s Stonehenge may just confuse you more.
Naming something after one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world gives you some big shoes to fill. Stonehenge in England is ancient, mysterious, and captivating - all things that America’s Stonehenge hopes to be.
First, let’s introduce it. America’s Stonehenge claims to be one of the oldest man-made sites in North America – over 4,000 years old, to be exact. It’s made up of caverns, rock formations and astrological formations, but no one knows exactly who made it, or why it’s there.
The spookiest part of the site is the sacrificial table. This rock slab is ringed with an indentation to help drain the blood from sacrificial victims. Creepy, right?
It gets worse! A hidden chamber and tube in the rock cavern below the table was reportedly built so that a priest could hide, and speak unseen as the voice of the oracle – a voice that seemed to come from within the sacrificial table itself.
Much like the original Stonehenge, America’s Stonehenge also has carved stones that align with the summer and winter solstices.
The stones suggest that at one point Mystery Hill was used as a religious site.
So, who built America’s Stonehenge? No one seems to know.
William Goodwin, who purchased the land in 1937, believed that the site was built by Irish Monks who were fleeing the Vikings in North America. Unfortunately there is no proof that monks or Vikings reached New Hampshire years before Columbus discovered the new world.
Most people, however, believed that the site was the work of New Hampshire’s earliest settlers or original Native American inhabitants.
There are many reports of the site being used to shelter escaped slaves traveling north on the Underground Railroad.
We may never know the truth about Mystery Hill and America’s Stonehenge, but the site, now owned by the aptly-named Stone family, is certainly worth a visit.
You may even get to see the newest mysterious occupants of the site – Alpacas.