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Apalache-Creek temple made use of both solar and lightning energy

Apalache-Creek temple made use of both solar and lightning energy


Many of you have probably glanced at an engraving, created by printer Arnout Leers of Rotterdam in 1658, which portrays a hilltop Apalache (Proto-Creek) temple, overlooking a mountain valley.   The architecture of the temple, drawn by Leers, is probably grossly inaccurate.  The building looks like a 17th century Dutch Protestant church.  However, other aspects of the temple are intriguing.  There is a beam of light coming from the sky or else pointed at the sky, from the temple mount.   Lightning is striking a device on the roof of the rear of the temple.  I have never, ever, seen such features elsewhere on European Renaissance art.

Engraving of the Apalache Sun Temple by Arnout Leers

Notice also the upper left part of the drawing.  It portrays an angel carrying a palm frond in one arm and the badge, which symbolized the French Huguenot Church, in the other arm.   This symbolizes the warm relations between the Creek People living in the Southeast and the French Protestants at that time.   Indeed,  eventually the High King of the Apalache became a French Protestant Christian . . . but also allowed English Protestant, Roman Catholic and Jewish colonists to worship freely in their own buildings. 

Ethnologist Charles de Rochefort did mention that the priests of the Apalache, called joana,  knew how to ignite their sacred fires with focused sunlight.  They also had large mirrors, which they used as “search lights” to focus sunlight on other parts of the valley.  As yet, I can’t find any mention of lightning in Charles de Rochefort’s book, but evidently there was such a mention in the notes given him by Richard Briggstock, who was the actual person, who stayed in the Kingdom of Apalache for several months in 1653.  Certainly, I learned on July 5, 2019 that this region has extensive electromagnetic activities underground, probably due to its volcanic origins.   Now I got a charge out my close encounters of a third kind with ground lightning, but I do not recommend that any readers attempt to duplicate the experience as a recreational activity.  There is so much that has been lost about the lives of our ancestors before the Great Disease Holocaust.   We will continue to put back the pieces of that puzzle as new evidence appears.

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Richard Thornton is a professional architect, city planner, author and museum exhibit designer-builder. He is today considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the Southeastern Indians. However, that was not always the case. While at Georgia Tech Richard was the first winner of the Barrett Fellowship, which enabled him to study Mesoamerican architecture and culture in Mexico under the auspices of the Institutio Nacional de Antropoligia e Historia. Dr. Roman Piňa-Chan, the famous archaeologist and director of the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, was his fellowship coordinator. For decades afterward, he lectured at universities and professional societies around the Southeast on Mesoamerican architecture, while knowing very little about his own Creek heritage. Then he was hired to carry out projects for the Muscogee-Creek Nation in Oklahoma. The rest is history. Richard is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the KVWETV (Coweta) Creek Tribe and a member of the Perdido Bay Creek Tribe. In 2009 he was the architect for Oklahoma’s Trail of Tears Memorial at Council Oak Park in Tulsa. He is the president of the Apalache Foundation, which is sponsoring research into the advanced indigenous societies of the Lower Southeast.



    I, like you, am to old for BS. I call it out when I see it, when appropriate.
    The world would be a better place if more did so (when they are armed with the facts of course).

    • That was a very interesting article. There could be large stone statues inside the Apalache mound-hill.


    Hi Richard, Intriguing post on lightning shown in painting of protro-Creek building. I wanted to remind you and your readers of the remarkable novel by Taylor Brown, River of Kings (2017). A work of fiction, it nevertheless tells the story of the french fort at the mouth of the Altamaha (Fort Caroline) which you have argued convincingly to been located as described in this novel-not near Jacksonville, Florida. This creative work is, I believe, a remarkable insight into what was happening as the french occupants await the inevitable attack by Spanish forces from St. Augustine and an increasingly disgruntled Native American population.

    • I had no idea that this novel had been written. Most people are not aware that William Bartram visited the ruins of the Spanish Fort (San Mateo) which was built near the site of Fort Caroline. He mentioned this in his book, but everyone seems to ignore the passage.



    Glad to hear that your lightning experience has got you thinking in a new direction lol!

    Okay… now you are ready to contemplate another interesting hypothesis…. namely where all of that ‘recent’ (geologically anyway) volcanic ash came from. The great thing about electrically induced volcanic eruptions is that they also leave a nice trail back to where the eruption came from. The ground that gets covered in ash looks like a veritable desert for a couple years after. The ash trail is quite evident in satellite photographs after an eruption but the 17th century unfortunately does not provide us with those. Instead you will have to use those ‘crazy’ 17th century maps.

    Google Images > Ogilvy 1672 map

    It’s the one at



      Damn… It appears I also took too many shocks during my brief stint as an industrial electrician back in the 90’s.

      Ogilby not Ogilvy and it turns out it’s just my damn spellchecker thankfully lol!


      That’s your ash trail from the @1670AD eruption in case you missed it. The natives recount an earlier eruption 10 miles south of Pigeon mountain. I figure the best candidate for that might be the clearly discernable maar at Rocky mountain hydroelectric reservoir 8 miles NW of Rome.


    Howdy, Trying to catch up on Texas history…Actually learned a couple of things. There was a Thornton at Goliad…your family?

    • Yes, they were originally Thorntons from Elbert County, GA. The commander of the dragoons, which were attacked by the Mexicans on the American side of the Rio Grande was also a Thornton. This surprise attack precipitated the Mexican-American War.


    Richard, One more follow on: the sound “Tani” used by the Parakusa (Hi-tani-che river) and the Cherokee’s lost band of the (Ani-Ki-tani) is a connection to the goddess “tani-th. In Egyptian, her name means ‘Land of Neith’ (America?)


    If a particular spot on a mound or mountain was continually being struck by lightning I could see someone smart building a temple there. The frequent lightning would be a great reminder to the masses of the supernatural powers that their kings or priests possessed.


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