I was on a bike ride into Boston, MA last weekend with some friends. On the way back, we paused for a rest in Cambridge. Around the intersection of Memorial Drive and Mt. Auburn St. there is a granite plaque in the ground, with the following:
Nobody I talked to knows anything about this. I am aware that the Vikings got to newfoundland, but Cambridge? Did Lief actually stay in my neighborhood?

I don’t see why not. I mean, it’s still in Mass, and not really a long walk from the shore. Unless they had to carry the damn boat, which would suck. I wonder how they got along with the natives.

I suppose it’s not impossible, but there’s certainly no solid evidence that the Vikings settled anywhere in the Americas other than Newfoundland (or Greenland, if that counts). I’m not even sure if they settled on Labrador, which is less than 20 miles from Newfoundland, much less anywhere else on the mainland of North America.

Also, “In the year 1000”? Not “In or around”? Someone’s way too sure of himself…or pulling people’s legs.

Chaim Mattis Keller

“Sherlock Holmes once said that once you have eliminated the
impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be
the answer. I, however, do not like to eliminate the impossible.
The impossible often has a kind of integrity to it that the merely improbable lacks.”
– Douglas Adams’s Dirk Gently, Holistic Detective

From EB:

There is an interesting book called “Runestone” by Don Coldsmith which is a fictionalized account of how a stone with Viking runes maight have wound up in modern-day OK. (The story is fiction; the stone being found near Heavener, OK is true.)

Sue from El Paso

majormd, I grew up near Heavener (pronounced HEEV-ner), and have seen this stone. I always assumed it was a hoax even though it is presented with a straight face as the real deal. Are you saying that there may have been Norse/Vikings in OK centuries ago?

pmh, No. I have not personally researched this, but apparently people who look into these for a living feel that the Heavener runestone is among the more likely to be the real thing.

The book I described is a work of fiction. It tells the story of how fictional characters might have migrated from known Viking settlements in Newfoundland inward. The runestone (if genuine) could have just as easily been transported there by traders.

But it’s an interesting story.

The vikings certainly settled in Newfoundlan, but only lived there a few decades. They explored Labeador, parts of Canada south, but never any US soil, as far is known. They did not get along with native Americans in Labrador that well. The Newfounland site is a national park at L’Anse Meadows.

OK, ( pardon the pun ) i’ll bite. Just how large IS this alleged Runestone? And,what with New Age, and Goth, what do the Runes say?

Here’s the Parks Canada website for L’Anse aux meadows National Historic Site (it is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, being the earliest known site of European presence in the New World).

There’s an interesting section of the site called “Is L’Anse aux meadows Vinland?”
Parks Canada

(Edited this url to bring us back to a regular line length. your humble TubaDiva)
[Note: This message has been edited by TubaDiva]


here’s a site that should answer your questions.

(my first attempt at posting a link. apologies if neccesary.)

Um… I guess I’ll have to retract my suggestion that Native American traders might have transported it from Newfoundland then. (the link stated the stone was 10 feet x 12 feet x 16 inches)

Sue from El Paso

This topic has been in the papers quite a bit around here lately. There are three big items that they’ve been citing as to “prove” that the Vikings were around here at some point:

  1. The “Skeleton in Armor” that was found in Fall River, MA in the 1830(?)s. It was, as it states, a skeleton, sitting inside of Norse-like brass (or bronze, the article has long since been tossed) armored outfit. The natives of this area (Wamponoags and Narragansetts) never had this type of armor, so the “experts” claim that it has to be a Viking. Also, apparently there is some evidence somewhere of Leif’s brother dieing in North America, further reinforcing the idea that this fellow must be a Viking. The skeleton in armor is no longer with us, however. It was destroyed in a rather nasty fire in Fall River in the late 1800s.

  2. Dighton Rock. Sitting on the Taunton River, about 4 miles or so north of Fall River (in the town of Berkley, across the river from Dighton) is this big-ol’ boulder with some carvings on it. Again, the “experts” claim that these carvings are Viking in origin, proving that the Vikings must have explored Narragansett and Mount Hope Bays, as well as sailed up the Taunton River. There is also some evidence claiming that these carvings were done by Portuguese explorers in the 1500’s, and with the extrordinary amount of Portuguese decendents in this area, that theory seems to be the favored one.

  3. A chunk of coal. I had seen within the past week or so that a lump of anthracite coal was found in a house in a Viking settlement in Newfoundland. Anthracite coal is only found in Rhode Island, so the Vikings must have been in the area to have brought that lump of coal back. (I figured some trading could have gotten said lump up there, but I’m not an anthropologist…what do I know).


I can think of no more stirring symbol of man’s humanity to man than a fire engine - Kurt Vonnegut