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Archaeological Studies Of Noah's Ark

Updated on April 29, 2016
Model of Noah;s Ark built to Biblical full scale measurements in The Netherlands.
Model of Noah;s Ark built to Biblical full scale measurements in The Netherlands. | Source

Ark Encounter Opens In Grant County Kentucky

Regardless of whether anyone finds and proves their find as Noah's Ark, the South will have such an Ark in Kentucky in 2014. Construction began in 2010 approximately 40 miles south of Cincinnati OH off I-75 in Grant County. The exhibit is a living history museum under subsidiary ownership of Answers In Genesis, which operates the Creation Museum in the area. The construction is all-wood and sustainable, provided by Troyer Group and their LEED certified professionals. It will provide jobs for 900 individuals and boost the area economy,

This project is more massive than one might imagine. Following the measurements found in the original language of the Old Testament, the ark itself is a huge structure. The site will also include a walk-through aviary and a petting zoo, a 1st Century Middle Eastern town, a Walled City, the Tower of Babel, and a timeline path describing historical events from the era of Abraham through the Parting of the Red Sea during the lifetime of Moses.

While media releases insist the ark is not a theme park, live performances will occur, along with bird and mammal shows; and dining and retail will be provided.

With the rise of Ark Encounter , interest in and controversy over the original Noah's Ark may disappear.

Noah's Ark, by Edward Hicks, 1846. Philadelphia Museum of Art. Public domain.
Noah's Ark, by Edward Hicks, 1846. Philadelphia Museum of Art. Public domain.

One theory abounding is the thought that Noah took not full grown animals on board his Ark, but infant animals and eggs, cocoons, etc.

Recent Discoveries Of The Ark

A 97-year-old Hardwicke Knight of New Zealand dies in 2008 and left behind as a legacy a collection of 650 boxes of archaeological and historical artifacts and other materials. Rumors had it that Knight had pieces of Noah's Ark in one of those boxes.

They were never found, but Knight had traveled to Turkey and Mt. Ararat, looking for the Ark in the 1930s. He may have been the earliest 20th Century explorer to do so. Other researchers and linguists studying original Old Testament language feel that the Ark is in the Mountains of Ararat and not on one Mt. Ararat.

Knight discovered under melting ice, some exposed wooden beams on Mt Ararat, which many still feel is the place the Ark landed after the Great Flood. However, that may be a case incorrect English translations of the Old Testament. In the 2010s, some scientists believe that the orginal texts indicate that the Ark is in what is now Armenia - and that may also not be correct. However, Knight flew back to Mt. Ararat in the 1960s with a team of professionals he assembled, but could not find the place where he had previously explored. His work is inconclusive.

Stained glass in a Paris cathedral.
Stained glass in a Paris cathedral. | Source

To Investigate or Not To Investigage

"The world is turning into a cesspool of imbeciles." - Harlan Ellison

Both sides of the Ark controversy contain members that feel those express sentiments.The quotation struck a chord as I've listened to sputtering profanity and wisecracks in the case of Noah's Ark from both sides of the controversy - existence and nonexistence.

I think an uproar provides additional reason to pursue studies to a logical ending, no matter what the results. If someone wants it stopped, other will want it completed, all the more.

If funding is not an issue and finances are provided from non-taxpayer funds (without swindling), I think that the researchers should be left unhampered, but still peer-reviewed. The fact that here and there an individual brings up the question on an Internet bulletin board or a Yahoo-answers type of site keeps a pot boiling or a wound festering and I wonder how much revenue, if any, is generated by resultant traffic. Still, the question is interesting, because of the controversy and the possibilities. The scene of the hundreds of animals waiting for Evan to open his Ark in Evan Almighty is otherworldly and as riveting as the dinosaurs first seen by visitors in Jurassic Park. Many people want to find the Ark.

If Bible history is nonsense, then why should not investigators pursue a Holy Lands archaeological project and prove that status of nonsense or not?

Why does a chorus shout to prevent an activity that costs taxpayers nothing and does not insist it believe in anything? Or would the finders and provers take the Ark and brow beat nonbelievers with it? --- Bad show.

And if proof of the Ark exists and is found, what will we all think?

A sculpture in Bavaria.
A sculpture in Bavaria. | Source

Astronaut James Irwin Saw The Ark

Many projects have gone up Mt. Ararat and felt they found the Ark or falsified evidence in order to make it look as if they did. I no longer read any of the falsifications or hoaxes.

The first explorer I heard of in connection with the Ark was former astronaut James Irwin. Reading a book of his from the 1970s (out of print), I found photos of the end of a wooden structure buried in the ice atop Mt. Ararat. In warmer years of greater ice melt, more of the structure was revealed; one year, as much as to be able to stand up inside the opening.

Carbon dating, even though not infallible, placed it at approximately the correct century.

The "ark" was an odd structure, though: a large and rectangular box.

Estimated measurements approximated the Noah's Ark of the Bible; but it did not look like a boat. Of course, NASA tells us that spacecraft can be any shape, so perhaps boats can be rectangular, the sea being somewhat like space. Regardless, further springtime explorations by the Irwin group were not continued.

Irwin's widow has kept all of her husbands research papers and exhibits in order and lends them to research institutions working on the Ark question.


Genesis 8:11 (NLT): This time the dove returned to him in the evening with a fresh olive leaf in its beak. Then Noah knew that the floodwaters were almost gone.

The Base Institute Research And Theory

Bob Cornuke (web sites below) travels to various land sites mentioned in the Bible in order to gather evidence to prove Bible events historically. In addition, he runs structured tours of these sites for vacationers, especially those that wish to travel to the Holy Lands of the Middle East.

Among Cornuke's several research projects is Noah's Ark and he feels that his findings may show some potential toward finding it. Visit his websites and read about his research and view videos and photos of some of his investigations.

The short version of his Ark research is that he thinks the Ark may be in Iran and may be petrified wood - like rock of approximately correct dimensions that has been found.

Whatever his end results, they should be interesting, if only to vacationers. The website seems to show that people have a good time on adventures with the institute. This may be the closest humanity approaches to proving or disproving the Ark.


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    • profile image

      Terry Veen 6 years ago

      Way cool story

    • Support Med. profile image

      Support Med. 6 years ago from Michigan

      I think it's exciting they are building the ark. Maybe it will have a mobile roof (one you can roll back and roll up like a convertible car in case it rains or something. Would not be a good idea to keep it without a roof 24/7. But it is an interesting--with the animlals and live entertainment, and creating employment too, Awesome!!

    • simeonvisser profile image

      simeonvisser 6 years ago

      A version of Noah's Ark already exists, it was built by a Dutch guy. It is on a smaller scale but still large enough to house a restaurant, animals, a shop, and more. You can find photos of it here: It is really big so I imagine the real Ark to be really massive in size.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      I didn't know about the Indian story. Thanks for telling us! The concept is even now more interesting.

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 6 years ago from UK

      This is fascinating Patty, a wonderfully researched , well written and thoroughly entertaining hub. I really enjoyed reading this. There is a whiff of Indiana Jones about the ark stories. Interestingly there is also a great deluge and an ark story in Hindu mythology- in this story the ark is rescued by one of the avatars of Vishnu from the great deluge.

    • tcfsu profile image

      tcfsu 6 years ago from Tallahassee, Florida

      wow! very interesting hub, great work!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      Are you kidding, copernico? This is going to be a big moneymaker, besides interesting to see what they come up with and pleasing to Believers. I know several people planning vacations for that place in 2014 already.

      btw, it's the Creation Museum researchers that have traveled to South America and found evidence of reptiles we heretofore had not seen. That adds to science.

    • copernico profile image

      copernico 6 years ago from Canada

      Not enough with having a Creation Museum? Kind of embarrassing isn't it?

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      That's an important point.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      That's an important point.

    • Mr. Smith profile image

      Mr. Smith 6 years ago from California

      Good info. here. I hope the ark is forever hidden. Man is way too prone to idolatry.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      Thanks! There's mention of someone finding what they think is a petrified-wood Ark. That could fit.

    • sligobay profile image

      sligobay 6 years ago from east of the equator

      I've read that there are separate Summerian and Assyrian accounts of a Great Deluge that destroyed the world with the exception of a boatload of people. Archeological digs in Mesopotamia have confirmed the occurrence of the Flood.

      It seems odd to expect a wooden vessel like the Ark to survive for 5000 years and more. I think that wood is 'biodegradeable'. Great Hub!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      J Sunhawk - As a child, I sat in a hill of fire ants once - kinda prickly. Moonshine Ants - that a good story title!

      Betty Reid - It should be pretty interesting and I want to see how accurate their ehibits are, as far as we can tell, that is.

    • Betty Reid profile image

      Betty Reid 6 years ago from Texas

      Sounds like you have done a lot of research! I would like to visit Ark Encounters when it opens.

    • J Sunhawk profile image

      J Sunhawk 6 years ago from South Carolina

      It makes me curious whether Noah included mosquitoes and fleas in his two-by-two counts. Then again, mosquitoes and fleas were most likely hitchhikers, or rather stowaways, to keep with the nautical theme we're discussing.

      But where did he get fire ants from? Fire ants were a creation of southern moonshiners who allowed common and gentile red ants to mill around the moonshine residue and pack off the used mash. From eating all that potent stuff, these harmless ants developed a flame-hot bite and evolved a red hot attitude toward anyone or anything that interfered with their work.

      The Ark is filled with mysteries, yes? Great hub in recounting a few of the more unusual claims about this episode in human history.

      If someone does one day find the Ark, beware of the fire ants.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      Thanks, Hello, hello: it's rpetty interesting and i'll go to Kentucky and take pictures when the Ark Encounter opens.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      This article had me spellbound and thank for a great, wonderfully written hub.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      That's cool. Thanks for postinjg.

    • profile image

      Yaright 6 years ago

      I enjoyed reading this. But, my opinions on the ark stay the same. I wouldn't mind going to the museum just to have a look.

    • workn2it profile image

      M Peel 6 years ago from Alabama

      I loved reading this!

    • L.L. Woodard profile image

      L.L. Woodard 6 years ago from Oklahoma City

      Lots of great and interesting information here. Thanks for the hub.

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 6 years ago from USA

      Hi Patty - Talk about miracles...

      Gus :-)))

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      Amazing stuff, Gus! Thanks for sharing this.

      Changing water into wine also takes a different understanding after I found that wine traditionally was 2 or 3 parts water to 1 part wine during that era. It could happen.

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 6 years ago from USA

      Patty - I believe that if a person believes something strongly enough it IS. That does not necessarily make it so for you and me, but it IS. Alchemists have long believed that they can turn base metals into gold. You and I know that this is not possible without employment of nuclear reactions and related equipment, but there have been real results from alchemy. For example, you can buy a "bain Marie" in most restaurant supply stores right today. They are used to keep foods hot for serving. Their name is derived from Moses' sister's name, and she is said to have been an early alchemist. Tales seem to last forever, don't they?

      Gus :-)))

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      That's a good point, Bobbi. I have things that prove it all to me, but many are intangible.

    • BobbiRant profile image

      BobbiRant 6 years ago from New York

      "We walk by faith, not by sight." comes to mind here. Some people say: "If I saw a miracle or proof of God, I'd believe." Would they? When backed against the Red Sea, just freed from Egyptian slavery, the Israelites started to whine and cry. Then after seeing the Red Sea parted,once they were in the wilderness, they complained again and again. So I think either people believe or not, they should not have to have proof. God knows humans are so prone to worshipping objects, that maybe it's good it's not found.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from North America

      Looking at some drawings of the finished Ark for Kentucky, I see that it is almost rectangular, with no house on top. That is rather an eerie vessel.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      The museum would be interesting if only to get a feel for what it would have been like.

    • SteveoMc profile image

      SteveoMc 6 years ago from Pacific NorthWest

      Intrigue, suspense, mystery, it's all there. Iteresting hub.