Boy Finds Ancient Canoe
Mother nature has given up a piece of hidden history to a young Indiana Jones.
A boy has discovered an historic canoe in a lake behind his home, but instead of keeping the dugout canoe, the family decided to preserve this piece of history.
About a month ago, seven- year- old Koen Ergle and his grandfather Ken Ergle were scuba diving at Lake Owen in the Ocala National Forest.
They found golf balls, old cans and bricks, but then they came across something that caught Koen's eye.
"He stopped me and pointed down to this piece of wood that was sticking out of the sand. He gave me the this look and I gave him the look back like what is it," said Ken Ergle.
"I thought it was a giant clam," said Koen.
Koen was so intrigued by what he found, he refused to leave it alone.
"So we tried to dig it up, we tried to pull it up, but it was stuck," said Koen.
Two weekends later, Koen and his grandfather continued to try and dig out the mysterious object.
"The longer it got and the more we uncovered it was like well this is an Indian canoe. So we just kept working, working, working until we were able to get it uncovered," said Ken.
Once the Ergle's realized what they discovered, they contacted Lee Brown who is with the Marion County Museum of History and Archaeology
On Labor day brown came out to Lake Owen and confirmed this piece of treasure.
"We discovered it was in fact a dug out canoe. The real thing," said Brown.
The ancient canoe is about 18 feet long and was most likely used by Native Americans.
Senior Archaelogist with the Division of Historical Resources Julia Byrd said she doesn't know how old it was.
"We will find out more when we run the radio carbon date and the wood identification," said Byrd.
On Thursday, Koen said good bye to his dug out canoe as it was carefully taken to a warehouse for a two year drying process.
"We anticipate that at our museum's fourth anniversary, it will be the weekend around 9/20 of 2015 we hope to have it on display," said Brown.
As little Koen waits to see this relic displayed at the museum, he said he will continue to scuba dive in hopes of finding another piece of history.
"Maybe another canoe," said Koen.
Bryd said it's best to keep such artifacts in the water to preserve it until the Division of Historical Resources can be called in to help.
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