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The Columbus, GA – Minoan – Dog Star – Yupaha Connection

The Columbus, GA – Minoan – Dog Star – Yupaha Connection


The answer to this riddle was always in my face, but we’uns wuz too dumb to look at the computer screen.

Three years ago, I downloaded this gorget at left, commonly found in North Georgia and Southeast Tennessee, into my computer and enlarged it.  This style of gorget has been found as far away as southeastern Missouri, but it was definitely the logo of the Apalache Kingdom in Northeast Georgia.  Some anonymous academician, who didn’t actually look at the design, labeled it “The Sacred Fire” long ago.  Subsequently,  four generations of anthropology students said “Yes, oh exalted master” and memorized that the gorget meant “The Sacred Fire” without looking at it.

Because it was an interesting composition, I colorized the gorget’s image and adopted it as the logo of the Apalache Foundation.  As I was coloring the artistic details,  I was astonished to see that this gorget actually portrayed warriors from two ethnic groups forming an alliance with a brazier burning copal resin as the uniting force.  That was not a fire.  It was a Mesoamerican copal brazier, with the symbol of the Itza Mayas on it.  On the the warrior’s kilts were the Maya glyphs for the planet Venus . . . which were associated with warfare in Maya culture.  However, the warriors were wearing conical straw hats like the Panoan peoples of eastern Peru and the one on the right had black tattoos on his face like the Chiska warriors of eastern Peru and northeastern Tennessee.  Actually, some Maori tribes in New Zealand did this too . . . so the custom may have originated among the Polynesians.  

OMG!   This gorget celebrated the union of peoples from many parts of the Americas into what would eventually become the Creek People.

By the way, don’t believe those articles by anonymous contemporary archaeologists in Wikipedia.  Bronze axes, knives and swords were found by a team of archaeologists from the Smithsonian Institute during the 1880s near a cluster of stone smelters in Caldwell County, NC.  Smithsonian archaeologists also unearthed copper smelters in eastern Tennessee. 

During the 20th century, several archaeologists of national stature found bronze tools and weapons in the soil of the Nacoochee Valley in the Georgia Mountains, in fieldstone veneered mounds on the Oconee River in Northeast Georgia and at the mouth of the Altamaha River.  Those in Georgia were uniformly credited to “unknown Spanish explorers.”  Folks stopped making bronze weapons and tools in the Iberian Peninsula around 500 BC.  The discoverers in Georgia included archaeologists Robert Wauchope, Harvard University’s, Phillip E. Smith, and James Ford of the Smithsonian Institute.

Meanwhile back in Bronze Age Scandinavia

In recent weeks, I have been trying to better understand the cultural traditions of the Scandinavian Bronze Age civilization to discern if more than their glyphs show up in the indigenous peoples of the Southeastern United States.  As mentioned in earlier POOF articles, they were not the same people genetically that we call Scandinavians today.  Their closest living relatives today seem to be the Sjø Sami (Sea Lapps) of northwestern Norway,  the Black Irish of County Kerry, Ireland and the Uchee of the Savannah River Basin in the USA.  The Basque people of northern Spain and southern France seem to also be relatives, because it is typical for Georgia Uchee to have Basque DNA markers.  However, the Basque DNA may have also come from early Spanish explorers or colonists from the Balearic Islands (Majorca) off the coast of Spain, whose indigenous people are related to the Basques.

That’s right.   The Colony of Georgia welcomed colonists from Majorca, who had first settled near St. Augustine, after their rebellion against the Spanish, to settle on the Upper Savannah River in what is now Stephens and Hart Counties, Georgia!   Several village names on colonial maps that folks call “Cherokee words whose meanings have been lost” are actually Majorcan words.   Majorcans also typically carry a lot of Semitic DNA.    POOF member, Dr. Andrew Martin, is a descendant of these Majorcans.

Perhaps, one of the most astounding discoveries made by the world-famous Genetics Institute at the University of København (Copenhagen)  occurred earlier in 2017.   They have determined that the blond and red hair gene of Scandinavians, Scots, Irish and northern Germans is not a Gaelic or Germanic genetic trait at all, but can be traced to a red-blond haired people, who lived on the southeastern tip of Iran.  They are the same red haired people, evidently, who founded the first civilization in Peru and who were the first settlers of New Zealand.

I asked the anthropology professors at Lund University in the Swedish province of Skåne  (where I lived) . . . “What was the religion of Bronze Age Scandinavians?”     Their response was surprising.   These people worshiped the sun, of course, but they also worshiped the Dog Star, Sirius.   Sirius is in a constellation that rises just before the sun in Northern Europe.  They also apparently worshiped the North Star.   By triangulating the positions of the sun, the star Sirius and the star Polaris (North Star)  Bronze Age Scandinavian mariners could determine their latitude and longitude anywhere in the northern hemisphere.   Scandinavian anthropologists believe that the abstract symbols that appear on several of their petrolyphic boulders are navigation charts.  

A graduate assistant at Lund University sent me a link to an article written by a professor at Uppsala University on the worship of Sirius.  Uppsala is located north of Stockholm and contains hundreds of Bronze Age and Iron Age burial mounds.  

Scandinavian anthropological literature emphasizes that during throughout the Bronze Age, Nordic peoples continued to predominantly use stone tools and weapons.  One of the most prestigious possessions was a flint sword, identical to those excavated at archaeological sites of much later dates in the Southeastern United States.  Copper tools were more common than bronze ones because bronze was extremely expensive and primarily limited to the nobility.   Thus, excavating a Scandinavian Bronze Age burial mound provides pretty much the same mix of stone and metal artifacts that one finds at Etowah Mounds in Georgia. 

Scandinavian copper miners used stone hammers and chisels, just like those found in the ancient copper mines of Lake Michigan in the USA.  Thus, the argument by American archaeologists that stone hammers eliminate the possibility of Pan-North Atlantic miners working in the Michigan Copper Belt is just not based on anthropological facts.

The spread of religious concepts across several continents

The Nordic name of Sirius was probably Buri.  In the Norse iron age population that replaced Scandinavian Bronze Age civilization, the newcomers named the first god of Scandinavia, Buri.  He was half-human, half-bull being that his mother was the Sacred Cow Goddess, Audhumla.  Keep in mind that the Indus Valley Civilization, where the red-haired people came from, worshiped a Cow Goddess.  Cows are still considered sacred in Hindu Religion.  Buri was defeated in battle by Odin, who had superior weapons.  Odin then became the supreme god.  

It seems that Norse religion remembered the time around 600-500 BC,  when Germanic peoples with iron weapons defeated the indigenous peoples of southern Scandinavia, by first establishing bases on the coast and then battling their way inland.   However, recent genetic testing has revealed that classic Scandinavians with red or blond hair were already occupying southern Scandinavia by the Iron Age.   The Germanic Celts with iron weapons do not represent a predominant percentage of Scandinavian DNA, but by becoming the elite, their language filtered down into the population.   

This is ironic.  The German Nazi’s used Scandinavian models to promote the “Aryan Ideal,” but in fact, Scandinavians are only closely related to Germans by language.  Their closes genetic relatives live in Friesland and eastern England/Scotland.

I was astonished to learn that this religion in Bronze Age Scandinavia had been traced to Crete! in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.  Furthermore, the Minoans on Crete apparently borrowed the worship of the Dog Star, Sirius,  by mixing the traits of the ancient Egyptian gods Horus, Hathor and Apes.   The Minoan deity was a “Bull God” and portrayed as either a bull or a man wearing a horned helmet.   This is the source of the Legend of the Minotaur . . . have half-man, half-beast, to whom youthful war captives were sacrificed.

On Bronze Age petroglyphs in Sweden, one often sees a super-sized figure in the prow of the boat like in the photograph above.   The figure is wearing either a god with horns or a leader wearing a horned helmet.  Scandinavian scholars can’t decide if the supersized figure is Buri (the star Sirius) navigating for the expedition or is the leader of the expedition.   Whatever the case,  they strongly suspect that Homer’s Odyssey was actually the dim cultural memory of expeditions by Minoan or Mycenaen ships to Southern Scandinavia.  All three civilizations were wiped out around 1200 BC.   Danish geologists have determined that a tsunami or incredibly powerful hurricane flooded Denmark around that time.  It leveled most of the trees and deposited a thick layer of mud.

There may be a horned figure on one of the boats in the Tugaloo Stone, which has been sitting outside on the grounds of Traveler’s Rest Inn near Toccoa, GA for over 200 years.  Its the stick figure next to the rudder oar in the stern of the boat.  I am not certain because of the engravings have been heavily eroded by the elements over the eons and I could only take photos of the sides of the stone by laying my camera on a brick.    This precious artifact needs to be inside a museum and photographed by the special cameras, used by geologists.

The myth that Viking warriors worn horned helmets came from early archaeological digs in Scandinavia,  northern Germany, the edges of the Baltic Sea and Friesland.  Archaeologists found bronze helmets with horns on them.  Not being skilled enough in that era to date objects by their stratographic location or later, by radiocarbon methods,  the archaeologists assumed that they were from the Viking Age.  Actually they were as much as 2000 years older.  Bronze does not decompose like iron.

Now take a look at the logo of the People of One Fire below.   It is a style of gorget found at many locations throughout the lower Southeastern United States, but is most common in the Creek Homeland.  This one came from the North Georgia Mountains.  Note that this figure is wearing deer antlers like Buri and Cermonnos . . . is carrying a solar ring in one hand and a traditional Neolithic-Bronze Age flint sword in the other.  There is a snake in the composition like the image of Buri.  

This figure is also displaying several Maya traditions.  His copper crown was worn by the Maya sun god.  His shell jewelry is arranged in a pattern similar to Maya costumes.   He is wearing a pubic guard like Itza Maya warriors.  Notice that he is also wearing the protective padded belt of a Maya ball player.  So  . . . what we are looking at is a piece of art that blends Muskogean, Mayan and North European traditions. Folks in the United States always assumed that the flint sword was a tradition of the Creek’s ancestors.  Now we know that it was on both sides of the North Atlantic Ocean.  OMG!


Thar’s gold in them thar hills

As Hernando de Soto was about to leave the indigenous Floridians, whom he incorrectly labeled Apalache, he asked the leaders where they could find gold.  The Floridians told De Soto that two weeks march to the north were the mountains, where the great town of Yupaha was located.  The people in Yupaha had plenty of gold.  Two weeks of hiking at 12 miles a day from Tallahassee, Florida probably would not get you to the mountains, but it would get you to Columbus, GA.

The conquistadors headed north in search of Yupaha, but once they reached what is now the Macon, GA area, the De Soto chroniclers never mentioned Yupaha again.   Yupaha is the Hispanization of the Itsate Creek words Yupa Ahau, which mean, “Horned Lord.”    There was a remnant tribe in the Creek Confederacy.  They were called the Yupataw or Horned People in Muscogee Creek.  They formerly lived on the Middle Chattahoochee and Upper Savannah Rivers, but by the mid-1700s were only living near what is now Columbus, GA.   Upatoi Creek, immediately south of Columbus is named after them .  The Metcalf Stone, which we now know portrays Minoan Linear A script was found near Upatoi Creek. 


A few months ago I found the image on right in the Georgia Colonial Archives in Savannah.  It is labeled “Creek writing system copied from boulder in Creek Country.”   I don’t think that this is “Creek writing” at all.  I have already put together of the Apalache glyphs to know that the Creek writing system was similar to the earliest Olmec system, but had many more symbols.   This writing system on right clearly came from Bronze Age Europe.  Who wrote this message and where the stone is now located, we may never know.


And now YOU know!





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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.



    This is making sense to me in respect to a recent incident of a friend of mine who had a DNA test done in her family. Her grandmother swore she was of Creek and Cherokee descent. She had passed away years ago. My friends mother had a DNA test done and she was told there was no native American dna, and was mostly Irish. This bothers my friend to think her grandmother fibbed about her ancestry as she was not the kind of person that would do this. As a forever student of anthropology (my minor at Auburn University, concentrating in archeaology), I am always researching and am increasingly frustrated over evidences that are ignored or illogically explained away. How many others are being told the same thing as my friend? I know she’s not the only one.

    • Jody, I wouldn’t trust most of those commercial DNA labs anyway. They don’t even have DNA test markers for the Creek Indians. They are ripping people off. The situation is even worse with the Cherokees, because there are many federally recognized Cherokees, who have very little Siberian DNA even though they look “Native American.”


    We see once again that what we were taught may not be correct and what man has learned of our past may not be so simple a thing. It’s an ever evolving, twisting, turning path sometimes you have no idea where it may go, or where it’s leading you to… But to learn there you must go. Thanks again Mr. Richard for following the path to where it may take you and then telling us about what you are finding out. So Very Interesting.


    Are there any good labs for us? To further confuse things, my German born G Grand pop (Dad’s side) looks kinda Sami. We have found no pics of the Irish side of Mom’s family where my “native bit” comes in, to know if they might have been dark. Pretty sure he come over as debtor. My Mom was dark and had auburn hair but blue eyes. Most of the blonds in my family tanned quite well which always seemed odd to me. Sadly, I’m probably southern white trash !

    • That’s a good question. Awhile back I saw a report where DNA samples of sisters, who were identical triplets, were sent to three of the top commercial labs. Their reports came back quite different. The TV program then resubmitted the sisters DNA, but swapped which labs they were sent to. The same girl at a different lab received a report that was quite different from the first lab. That tells me that these commercial labs are primary for “entertainment” like state lotteries.


    Richard, You are light years ahead of the History books. Great article and Thank You!!!


    Richard, You are light years ahead of the History books. Great article and Thank You!!! “and Dan stayed on their ships” perhaps some of that lost tribe made it to Dan – Mark (Denmark) with iron weapons? Moses (Passover-Jordan river) 1313-1297 BC and but Dan tribe went to looting all the way to Northern Europe. I think the Celtic peoples (Sun worshipers) started in the Eastern US and went across the Atlantic. I don’t think the Celtic kingdoms started in South-central German but arrived in the Western side of the land once called “Amorica” with its Royal city called “IS”.


    A solid copper axe head was found at a Food City grocery store in Murray County Georgia back in early August 2017 Richard. And there is much about the Semitic DNA found in people there as well. The Semitic people mined the silver inside Fort Mountain since the early 1400’s, or so I was told growing up here. There’s much about those mines and what all is inside there to this day. I fully support you Sir. I am delighted that you are writing this blog and share it often. Take care out there . Peace


    As always Richard you deliver a superb post. I am so amazed at learning about the DNA labs and their devious ways. I am also amazed at how the Minoans come into this. So interesting to read. Thank you.


    Hey Richard,
    I was telling my neighbor about the mariners using the star Sirius, Polaris, and the sun to find their position. He brought up a good point. If Sirius is up before the sun did the mariners have a sun stone to find the exact position of the sun? The Vikings had sunstones, that was supposed to be the key to their navigation system. With them they could find the sun in any weather. The Vikings learned that somewhere, just sayin…
    Thanks for the great articles

    • That I don’t know. In fact, all I know is what I read in the Swedish academic paper. This is a whole new world for me. I can’t recall Scandinavian history ever being in a history class, I took in either high school or college.


        Hey Richard,
        Well you did it again to me. I was looking for info on Sun stones to try and answer my question and I went down the rabbit hole called the web. I found in my searching pictures of bronze age petroglyphs in Armenia. When I compared them to the ones you got from Sweden there were amazing similarities. In the past you and other readers have a theory that the Cherokee ancestors may have come from this area. Have you seen any of these petroglyphs from Armenia? There are thousands around Ughtasar Mountain.
        Google Ughtasar petroglyphs and you will see hundreds of pictures of the carvings. To my untrained eye there are to many that are so close there had to be some communication happening between the bronze age peoples
        Thanks for an interesting teip through the web.

        • The Armeninan petroglyphs can be thousands of years older than those in Scandinavia. Scandinavian scholars think that original people of Scandinavia came from Armenia, but that the current Armenians came from somewhere else.


    Your discussion of the VIKING horns in the most competent, coherent and almost complete discussion of the topic that I have read.
    My Paradigm is that the Vikings became Catholics when they met the LENAPE bishop about AD 1125. Then the wore feathers on their head gear. Because of that tradition, the men in America wore feathers,

    Keep up the good work!

    • Sanct Ibbs Kyrka on Ven Island in the Oresund Channel was built around 900 AD. The King of Denmark was converted there. Ven is where I designed the pedestrian village.


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