The newly discovered Vikings site in Canada may possibly rewrite history, particularly the part when Europeans explored North America before the time of Christopher Columbus.
The said discovery by a team led by American archaeologist Sarah Parcak was made using satellite images of Point Rosee in Newfoundland captured via cameras installed some 400 miles above the Earth.
Parcak studied the images and found interesting variations in the landscape such as discolored soil and altered vegetation, which suggest that there must be something important underneath them.
Further into their investigations, the team also found almost indistinguishable patterns on the ground, which may signify that manmade structures used to be found there.
One of these structures appear to have sections inside and is nearly the same size and shape as the longhouses unearthed at the only other pre-Columbian iron manufacturing site in North America, which is the L'Anse Aux Meadows.
Rich Stories, Elusive Evidences
Although sagas about Nordic explorations seem to be rich with epic battles, amazing adventures, mystifying romances and tragic betrayals, all those narratives remain to be just stories written on paper or words spoken by the mouth.
Unfortunately, such stories only led experts to discover just one confirmed Norse site in the New World.
Fast forward to the present - 55 years to be exact - the second possible Nordic historical location was discovered, with the help of advanced technologies from up in space.
Implications Of The Discovery On History
The discovery of the new site, announced on Thursday, opens a wide door to the possibility that Vikings were once present there.
The team found turf structures, which may have been used for almost anything and everything - houses, storage centers or something completely out of the box.
The researchers also discovered very few artifacts in the area, which actually solidifies their theory that Vikings were indeed present at the area at some point. This is because Vikings tended to have fleeting settlements, "ephemeral" as Parcak would describe.
History books may soon have to be recalled for some major editing as the possibilities made by this new discovery is very vast. The site may have been a facility for iron smelting, a part of a bigger settlement, the endpoint of the Vikings' travel or just a rest point prior to bigger explorations of other areas that are yet to be uncovered.
Further Research Needed To Strengthen Discovery
There is so much more to study and Parcak is looking to monitor the skies for other helpful clues. She and her team will return to Point Rosee this summer to further their excavations.
Meanwhile, the experts are exercising keen caution in discussing the exact implications of the new discovery. Whether the area is a Norse site or not has not yet been confirmed.
"This is going to take years of careful excavation, and it's going to be controversial," says Parcak. She further explains that the discovery may actually bring up more questions than answers.
But then again, she says that that is what new discoveries are meant to do.