Last week, Noah's Ark Ministries, including evangelical explorers and filmmakers, announced that they had found the remnants of Noah's Ark on Mount Ararat in Turkey. (Read all about the claim in National Geographic
.) Of course, this isn't the first group that's "found" Noah's Ark. No, it's at least the sixth in the last 50 years. Over at Discovery News, the Skeptical Inquirer's Benjamin Radford provides "A Short History of Noah's Ark Discoveries." From Discovery:
Interest in the Ark spiked in the 1970s after a man named Georgie Hagopian said he located and climbed on the remains of the Ark at least twice--though he claimed it occurred some 60 years earlier (in the early 1900s) and could offer no evidence to back it up. One of the first people to claim to have found the Ark on Mt. Ararat was a woman named Violet Cummings, who in the early 1970s wrote a book titled Noah's Ark: Fable or Fact? Despite its intriguing title, the claim turned out to be fable, not fact. A few years later, in 1976, yet another man claimed to have discovered the Ark on Ararat, and offered ambiguous photos as proof but nothing more came of it.
"A Short History of Noah's Ark Discoveries"
(painting above is Edward Hicks' "Noah's Ark," 1846)
Interest waned until the 1990s, when CBS television aired a primetime special titled The Incredible Discovery of Noah's Ark, which finally offered seemingly definitive proof in the form of an eyewitness who owned a piece of wood he claimed was from the ark. The whole thing turned out to be a huge hoax; CBS and its viewers had been duped.
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