Mysteries of the Seven Site


Before Excavation

The fourth question we asked of the Seven Site was whether the hole that we noticed when we first found the site in 1996 might be where the work party buried the skull that was later exhumed by Gallagher. We reasoned that a careful excavation of the hole might provide clues to its purpose and, if it was really the “skull hole,” meticulous screening of its contents might even turn up teeth that had become dislodged from the skull in the process of burying it and digging it up. It was a long shot, but the possibility of obtaining a DNA sample from a tooth was worth the effort.

After Excavation
As we excavated the hole it became apparent that its original shape fit the “skull hole” hypothesis very nicely. It appears there were two holes – an original hole of fairly small proportions, and a subsequent larger hole that was not centered over the original one.

Unfortunately, no teeth were found, but neither can we be certain that we got to the bottom of the original hole before we ran out of time.

Click on each topic to read our results and reasoning, and to see photographs of the artifacts recovered:

  1. Is there evidence at the site of the presence of a castaway?
  2. Does the site fit Gallagher's specific description of a fire, dead birds, and turtle?
  3. Does anything about the site explain the presence of what appear to be man-made trails in a 1938 aerial photo taken before the island was officially inhabited?
  4. Is a man-made hole at the site the place where a skull found by a work party was buried and later dug up by Gallagher?
  5. Are there human remains or diagnostic artifacts present at the site which make it possible to identify the castaway?
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