Extremely rare ‘unicorn’ of US paper money expected to sell for $3 million

An extremely rare U.S. currency note from the late 19th century is expected to sell for up to $3 million when it is auctioned next year. The 1891 $1,000 Silver Certificate is the only bill of its kind believed to exist in private hands, according to auction house Stack’s Bowers Galleries. Known as the Marcy … Continue reading “Extremely rare ‘unicorn’ of US paper money expected to sell for $3 million”

An extremely rare U.S. currency note from the late 19th century is expected to sell for up to $3 million when it is auctioned next year.

The 1891 $1,000 Silver Certificate is the only bill of its kind believed to exist in private hands, according to auction house Stack’s Bowers Galleries. Known as the Marcy note, the bill features the portrait of former New York Governor William L. Marcy, who served as a senator and as secretary of war under President James Knox Polk.

Stack’s Bowers Galleries notes that the Marcy note is sometimes considered the “unicorn” of U.S. money thanks to its unique design. The bill, which has an estimated pre-sale value of $2 million to $3 million, is being offered at auction for the first time.

'HOLY GRAIL OF PAPER MONEY' SELLS AT AUCTION FOR $2M

The note will be auctioned at the Whitman Spring Expo, which takes place in Baltimore between Feb. 28 and March 3.

The back of the note. (Stack’s Bowers Galleries)

Another extremely rare $1,000 bill described as the “Holy Grail of paper money” was recently sold at auction for just over $2 million.

The 1890 Treasury Note is dubbed the “Grand Watermelon” on account of the large green zeros on the back of the bill. Major General George Meade, the commander of Union forces at the Battle of Gettysburg, is shown on the bill’s face.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

8,300-year-old stone snake heads reveal Stone Age ritual ceremonies

What might be passed over as two oddly shaped rocks are the work of Stone Age artisans who sculpted the rocks into beady-eyed snake heads, archaeologists have found.

It's a mystery why these ancient people, who lived in what is now Ukraine, created the stoney serpents, but the researchers have a good guess.

"These sculptures could have ritual purpose," said study lead researcher Nadiia Kotova, an archaeologist in the Department of the Eneolithic and Bronze Age at the Institute of Archaeology National Academy of Sciences (NAS) of Ukraine. "They were probably used during ceremonies." [In Photos: Intricately Carved Stone Balls Puzzle Archaeologists]

Kotova and her team found the snakey stones in 2016, during an excavation at Kamyana Mohyla I, an archaeological site near the city of Terpinnya. Both stones, although different ages, were found near ancient bones and flints from the same period: the Mesolithic, which is the middle Stone Age between the earlier Paleolithic and later Neolithic. There were many sandstones at the site, but "these two had quite a strange shape, so we decided to look closer," Kotova told Live Science in an email.

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  • The "older" figurine was found near an open fireplace, near piles of shells and flint tools. Using organic matter from the fireplace, the researchers were able to radiocarbon date the yellow sandstone snakehead to between 8300 B.C. and 7500 B.C.

    This snakehead is small, measuring only 5 inches by 3 inches (13 by 6.8 centimeters) and weighing almost 3 lbs. (1,215 grams). It has a triangular shape with a flat bottom. "Two rhombic eyes were carved on the upper surface alongside two knobs" on the stone, the researchers wrote in the study. "A wide, long line represents a mouth."

    Regrettably, the snake was "damaged on the 'nose' during excavation," the researchers wrote in the study.

    The "younger" stone snake was also found by a fireplace and was dated to about 7400 B.C. It measures about 3 inches by 2 inches (8.5 by 5.8 cm) and weighs just under 1 lb. (428 grams), meaning it can comfortably fit in a person's hand, Kotova said.

    "The smaller stone has a flattened, round shape and so-called 'neck,'" Kotova said. "There are two deep traces, probably the eyes of the creature. There is also kind of a nose."

    The two findings represent the only snakehead stones known at Kamyana Mohyla I. However, scientists did discover a fish-like stone sculpture at the nearby Kamyana Mohyla, a giant stone pile just a stone's throw from the snakeheads' spot.

    Archaeologists don't know much about the people who made these sculptures, except that these prehistoric inhabitants lived on the steppe of the northwestern region of the Sea of Azov. "They made tools from stones, flints and bones and hunted with bows and flint arrows," Kotova said. "It was the society of hunters and gatherers. Unfortunately, we don't know much about their cultural traditions yet."

    The study was published online today (Dec. 12) in the journal Antiquity.

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    Originally published on Live Science.

    Cannibalism? Nope, this 8,000-year-old man was likely burned in a ritual

    The shattered skull of a hunter who lived about 8,000 years ago isn’t evidence of cannibalism, as scientists previously thought. Rather, the hunter died in a grisly murder, new research suggests.

    Although the ancient skull, found in what is now Poland, is severely damaged, a new analysis revealed that the skull showed signs of healing, meaning that the man likely lived a little more than a week after his injury.

    "It turned out that the damaged skull shows traces of healing that can not be seen with the naked eye," Jacek Tomczyk, a physical anthropologist at the University of Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński in Warsaw, told the news website Science in Poland. "This means that the person did not die at the moment when the impact occurred, which also destroys the archaeologists' belief that we are dealing with a victim of cannibalism." [In Images: An Ancient European Hunter Gatherer]

    Researchers originally discovered the Stone Age skull nearly 50 years ago on the banks of the Narew River, in Wieliszew, a district in east-central Poland. In addition, in the late 1950s, archaeologists also found an ancient burned human bone nearby, as well as flint tools, which suggested that the man was a hunter. These artifacts dated to the Mesolithic, the period that followed the last ice age.

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  • Because the bone was burned and the skull had obviously been dealt a strong blow, the researchers concluded that the man had been cannibalized.

    But Tomczyk and his colleagues decided to take a second look. They re-examined the ancient skull with a scanning electron microscope and a computed tomography (CT) scanner, which allowed the researchers to create digital 3D images.

    The analysis showed a long, horizontal incision on the center of the man's forehead, Tomczyk told Live Science in an email. "Despite the fragmentation of the skull, the edges of the incisions are regular, not ragged," as they would be right after an injury, he said. A closer look at these edges revealed a "subtle callous formation bridging several bone fragments," indicating that the wound was just starting to heal.

    "This is the first case from Mesolithic Poland where we see bone damage and healing," Tomczyk told Science in Poland. Now, the only Mesolithic site in Poland thought to contain cannibalized remains is Pomorska, in the Lubuskie Lake District, he noted.

    As for the bone, it's possible it was burned in a funerary ritual, as people during the Mesolithic both burned and buried corpses.

    The ancient hunter was likely in his 20s when he died. "We also did DNA testing, but unfortunately tissue damage caused by high temperatures made it impossible for us to obtain reliable results," Tomczyk told Science in Poland. The skull injury, however, was clear as day. It appears that the hunter "received a sharp hit with the tool," he said.

    The research has been submitted to a peer-reviewed research journal, but it is not yet published.

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    Originally published on Live Science.

    Remains of US Revolutionary War frigate discovered off UK coast

    The remains of the famous Revolutionary War frigate USS Bonhomme Richard have been discovered off the coast of the U.K., more than 200 years after it sank following a naval battle.

    The BBC reports that the famous warship, which was commanded by John Paul Jones, was discovered by search experts Merlin Burrows. Pieces of the ship were found off the coastal town of Filey in Yorkshire.

    Originally a merchant vessel named Duc de Duras, the ship was built in France and donated to the American cause by King Louis XVI in 1779. Renamed Bonhomme Richard to honor both countries (American Ambassador to France Benjamin Franklin was the author of “Poor Richard’s Almanac”), the ship was commanded by John Paul Jones, who is regarded as the father of the U.S. Navy.

    REVOLUTIONARY WAR-ERA SHIP UNEARTHED AT VIRGINIA CONSTRUCTION SITE

    Bonhomme Richard famously defeated British frigate HMS Serapis in the Battle of Flamborough Head off the U.K. coast on Sept. 23, 1779. “Victorious, John Paul Jones commandeered Serapis and sailed her to Holland for repairs,” explains the U.S. Navy, on its website. “This epic battle was the American Navy's first-ever defeat of an English ship in English waters!” it adds.

    Illustration of the battle between USS Bonhomme Richard and HMS Serapis, from "Memoirs de Paul Jones." (Library of Congress)

    The clash is also immortalized in a famous quote from Jones. During the closing stages of the battle, Bonhomme Richard’s mast was hit above the top-sail, sending a large section of the mast and the ship’s Colors crashing to the deck near Jones’s feet. “Serapis called out, ‘Have you struck your Colors?’ Resoundingly, John Paul Jones exclaimed, ‘Struck Sir? I have not yet begun to fight!’," according to U.S. Navy. “With newfound will, his crew delivered decisive blows from all sides and aloft. Jones' sent 40 Marines and Sailors into the rigging with grenades and muskets.”

    Despite defeating HMS Serapis, Bonhomme Richard suffered extensive damage during the battle and sank on Sept. 24, 1779.

    SUNKEN BRITISH WARSHIP FROM AMERICAN REVOLUTION FOUND IN LAKE ONTARIO

    The location of the wreck has long been a mystery, with the Yorkshire Post reporting that the site was thought to be six miles out to sea. However, the newly-found remains are said to be visible from nearby cliffs and “walkable from the beach.”

    A depiction of the battle between USS Bonhomme Richard and the British frigate HMS Serapis. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

    The discovery has caused excitement on social media.

    “FINALLY! Bravo! Been a long time coming!” tweeted maritime historian and author William H. White.

    “Found!” tweeted Bill Koller.

    Revolutionary War shipwrecks continue to be a source of fascination for historians. Earlier this year, for example, a Nor’easter uncovered the remains of a Revolutionary War-era ship on a beach in Maine.

    ALEXANDER HAMILTON’S DESCENDANT LOANS EXTREMELY RARE FAMILY HEIRLOOMS TO REVOLUTIONARY WAR MUSEUM

    In 2015, a Revolutionary War-era ship was unearthed at a construction site in Alexandria, Virginia.

    John Paul Jones, hero in the American Revolutionary War, (c1930s). Jones (1747-1792) was the first well-known naval hero in the American Revolutionary War, and founded the US Navy. (Photo by The Print Collector/Print Collector/Getty Images)

    A 22-gun British warship that sank during the American Revolution regarded as one of the "Holy Grail" shipwrecks in the Great Lakes was discovered at the bottom of Lake Ontario in 2008.

    Fox News’ Katherine Lam and the Associated Press contributed to this article. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

    Chilling Crusader discovery: Trove of coins and 900-year-old earring found at massacre site

    Archaeologists in Israel have uncovered a trove of rare gold coins and a 900-year-old gold earring at the site of a Crusader massacre.

    Officials announced the discovery earlier this week, explaining that the artifacts were found at the ancient city of Caesarea on Israel’s coast. A small bronze pot, which contained 24 gold coins and the earring, was found hidden between two stones in the side of a well located in the remains of a 900-year-old house.

    “The coins in the cache dating to the end of the eleventh century, make it possible to link the treasure to the Crusader conquest of the city in the year 1101, one of the most dramatic events in the medieval history of the city,” explained excavation directors Dr. Peter Gendelman and Mohammed Hatar of the Israel Antiquities Authority, in a statement.

    AMAZING CRUSADER DISCOVERY: GOTHIC HALL FOUND AT KNIGHTS' HILLTOP CASTLE

    Citing contemporary sources, the experts noted that most of Caesarea’s inhabitants were massacred by a Crusader army led by King Baldwin I of Jerusalem. “It is reasonable to assume that the treasure’s owner and his family perished in the massacre or were sold into slavery, and therefore were not able to retrieve their gold,” they said in the statement.

    The bronze pot with gold earring inside. (Photo: Yaniv Berman, courtesy of the Caesarea Development Corporation)

    The stunning artifacts were found in the area of a sacred compound built by King Herod the Great more than two millennia ago. Other treasures have also been found nearby. In the 1960s, for example, a pot containing gold and silver jewelry was discovered at Caesarea, while a collection of bronze vessels was found in the 1990s.

    The house where the latest treasures were found was built about 1,000 years after Herod’s reign.

    CRUSADER-ERA HAND GRENADE SURPRISES ARCHAEOLOGISTS

    The turbulent Crusader era in the Holy Land began in the 11th century and lasted until the 13th century.

    The Gold earring discovered at Caesarea. (Photo: Yaniv Berman, courtesy of the Caesarea Development Corporation)

    The excavation project at Caesarea is sponsored by the Edmond de Rothschild Foundation and involves the Caesarea Development Corporation, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, as well as the Israel Antiquities Authority.

    The discovery also came just before the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, when it is traditional to give children “Hanukkah gelt,” which are chocolate coins. “It is symbolic that the gold coins were discovered on the eve of Hanukkah,” said Caesarea Development Corporation CEO Michael Karsenti, in a statement. “For us, this is certainly ‘Hanukah gelt,’ and a testament to how much more is still hidden within Caesarea.”

    900 YEAR-OLD JEWELRY FOUND IN CRUSADER CASTLE

    Israel’s Crusader sites continue to be a source of fascination. In a separate project, for example, archaeologists recently discovered a Gothic hall at a medieval Crusader fortress in northern Israel.

    Caesarea Maritima, general view of the archaeological excavations (Photo: Yaakov Shimdov, Israel Antiquities Authority).

    Last year, amazing medieval jewelry was found during the excavation of a Crusader castle on Tittora Hill in the town of Modi’in-Maccabim-Re’ut.

    In 2016, a centuries-old hand grenade that may date back to the time of the Crusaders was among a host of treasures retrieved from the sea in Israel. The hand grenade was a common weapon in Israel during the Crusader era.

    MORE DEAD SEA SCROLLS MAY BE HIDDEN IN NEWLY DISCOVERED CAVES

    Over decades, archaeologists have also uncovered the ruins of the once-thriving Crusader city in the modern Israeli city of Acre.

    Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

    China’s ancient ‘pyramids’ reveal their stunning secrets

    A researcher has uncovered fascinating new details about the construction of ancient “pyramids” in China.

    There are over 40 “pyramid” mausoleums in China, which are huge artificial earth hills. Only two of these sites have been partly excavated, according to Giulio Magli of the Politecnico di Milano in Italy, author of a new study on the pyramids.

    The research, which examines the role of astronomy and Feng Shui in ancient Chinese necropolises, used satellite data and field surveys to collect a wealth of information on the archaeological sites. One of the sites is the pyramid tomb China’s First Emperor Qin Shi Huang, which is guarded by the famous Terracotta Army.

    MYSTERIOUS REMAINS OF EXTINCT APE DISCOVERED IN ANCIENT CHINESE TOMB

    In a study published in the journal Archaeological Research in Asia Magli notes that the ancient Chinese pyramids fall into two categories. One group of tombs is oriented “with good precision” to the cardinal points of north, south, east and west.

    Terracotta Warriors protecting the Qin Mausoleum’s east front. (Giulio Magli)

    In a statement, the researcher explains that, like their counterparts in Egypt, the ancient Chinese emperors saw their power as “a direct mandate of the heaven, identifying the circumpolar region as a celestial image of the imperial palace and its inhabitants.” As a result, the orientation of pyramids toward the cardinal points should come as no surprise.

    However, the second group of pyramids is oriented away from true north. Specifically, these tombs orient to the west of north, when looking toward the monument. “It is out of the question that this second family may have been due to errors of the Chinese astronomers and architects,” Magli explained.

    ANCIENT GREEKS MAY HAVE HELPED DESIGN CHINA'S TERRACOTTA ARMY, EXPERTS SAY

    Instead, the study proposes that the ancient pyramid builders were accounting for the rotation of the Earth’s axis, which, over long periods of time, alters the position of stars in the night sky.

    Video

    “The explanation proposed in the article is thus astronomical: the emperors who built the pyramids of the ‘family 2’ did not want to point to the north celestial pole, which at the time did not correspond to any star, but to the star to which the pole would be approached in the future: Polaris,” he explained.

    Polaris, also known as the North Star or Pole Star, is located in the constellation of Ursa Minor and has long been used as an important guide for navigation. While modern astronomers are used to identifying the north celestial pole with Polaris (although it is not a perfect alignment), at the time of the ancient Han emperors in China, the pole was still far from Polaris, Magli explained.

    Other discoveries are shedding new light on ancient China. In 2016, archaeologists revealed evidence that ancient Greeks may have helped design the Terracotta Army, potentially offering fresh insight into China’s early contact with the west.

    Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

    The colorful history of the New York City subway map revealed

    New York City, 1932 – at that point, the New York City subway has been around for a whopping 28 years. With 472 station stops, around 800 miles of track, and over 20 different subway lines, one might be shocked to hear that in 1932, the NYC subway system was attempting to label all 27 subway lines with only 3 colors. To even get close to understanding how NYC subways went from 3 colors to today’s 10, one would have to speak to a man named Peter Lloyd.

    Lloyd is an amateur historian of the New York City subway system. He not only knows the system’s ins and outs he also knows the story of the creative geniuses that brought the system to where it is today. The New York City subway system has a long and outstanding history, but in order to learn where the color-coding system originated, we need to talk about 2 key players.

    First and foremost, there is Raleigh D’Adamo, winner of a contest that the New York City Transit Authority held in 1964, and technically the creator of the modern color-coding system that exists within the NYC subway system today.

    MYSTERIOUS FLORIDA TUNNELS’ SECRETS REVEALED

    In 1964, the NYCTA contest called on graphic designers to attempt to design a way to organize the extremely disorganized subway system. D’Adamo wasn’t a graphic designer by profession, but he was a subway map guru and a man with an idea, so he entered the contest and to his surprise, he was one of three winners.

    Although not the focus of the contest, his background in practicing law came in handy; D’Adamo says, “to explain it [his idea] I wrote a 19-page report comparing New York City’s system with other systems like London and Paris.” D’Adamo went on to explain that the key phrase that caught the eyes of the judges was, “It’s clear that the maps of the New York City subway system are using too few colors to do too much work.” All in all, D’Adamo's idea was that every line would be assigned a color, and so the modern coding system was born.

    This organizational strategy worked for a few years but having a map with over 20 colors on it eventually started to confuse people. This is where John Tauranac enters the picture. Today, Tauranac is a professor at NYU, but back in the day, he was the leader of a key team in the MTA when the NYC subway map was going through some important changes. To simplify the color system, Tauranac and his team decided to incorporate something called “trunk lines.”

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    Trunk lines made it so subway lines that ran on the same avenue were all labeled the same color. Lloyd explains it best when he says, “Lexington Avenue has 3 lines running down it, the 4, 5 and 6. Now back in the 60’s and 70’s each of those routes had its own color. John Tauranac’s idea was to paint those 3 routes the same color and that meant he can draw a single line instead of 3 lines, saving space.” This trunk line system is still in effect, and New York City has John Tauranac to thank for the easy-to-read maps of today.

    New York City is home to the largest rapid transit system in the world. However, when it comes to reliability, it finds itself towards the bottom of the list. This may change, but after understanding the rich and longstanding history of the NYC subways, it can be agreed upon that the properly organized and accurately colored system we currently have is far better than the one of bygone days.

    See the exclusive video interview with Lloyd above to get the full story.

    British Library set to reveal real-life ‘da Vinci code’

    The British Library in London is set to showcase a number of Leonardo da Vinci's most important notebooks, all written in his famous “mirror-writing.”

    The "Leonardo da Vinci: A Mind in Motion" exhibit will include notes and drawings from three of his most revered scientific and artistic notebooks, the Codex Arundel, the Codex Forster and the Codex Leicester.

    “These remarkable pages, written in Leonardo’s distinctive mirror writing, illustrate how his detailed studies of natural phenomena – and in particular of water – influenced his work both as an artist and an inventor,” explained the British Library, in a statement.

    LEONARDO DA VINCI'S EARLIEST WORK DISCOVERED?

    In addition to using his own shorthand, da Vinci also wrote his personal notes starting on the right-hand side of the page. It is not clear whether this so-called mirror writing was a way to keep his notes private or simply a means to prevent smudging, as da Vinci was left-handed.

    File photo – Sheet discussing how to read water for navigation from Leonardo da Vinci’s Codex Leicester (Photo by Seth Joel/Corbis/VCG via Getty Images)

    Another famous southpaw, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, bought the Codex Leicester, for $31 million in 1994. The Codex, a 72-page collection of notes, is widely considered to be one of Leonardo’s most important scientific notebooks, according to the British Library.

    The British Library exhibition, scheduled for next year, will mark the 500th anniversary of the Renaissance master’s death.

    LEONARDO DA VINCI'S $450 MILLION 'SALVATOR MUNDI' PAINTING HEADS TO THE LOUVRE ABU DHABI

    The library said Tuesday it will mark the first time selections from the three will be displayed together in Britain. The Codex Leicester is also being shown in the U.K. for the first time since its purchase by Gates.

    Sketch of Italian polymath Leonardo da Vinci (1452 – 1519). (Photo by Mansell/The LIFE Picture Collection)

    Curator Andrea Clarke said da Vinci's notebooks "show him to be an extraordinarily dynamic thinker who was able to make connections between multiple phenomena and disciplines."

    The da Vinci exhibit will run from June until September.

    HISTORIANS SAY THEY'VE FOUND LEONARDO DA VINCI'S LIVING RELATIVES

    Da Vinci continues to be a source of fascination. Earlier this year, experts in Italy said they had found the earliest surviving work by da Vinci. The small glazed terracotta tile, described as a self-portrait of the artist as the Archangel Gabriel, was unveiled at a press conference in Rome.

    However, the tile’s authenticity was questioned by noted Leonardo expert Martin Kemp, professor emeritus of the history of art at the University of Oxford.

    There has even been some debate about the authenticity of Da Vinci’s “Salvator Mundi” painting, which sold for a record $450.3 million last year.

    The painting grabbed headlines around the world when it was sold at Christie’s auction house in New York. "Salvator Mundi," Latin for "Savior of the World,” is one of fewer than 20 paintings by da Vinci known to exist and the only one in private hands.

    The Associated Press contributed to this article. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

    Mysterious Florida tunnels’ secrets revealed

    A newspaper article from almost 100 years ago has shed new light on the mysterious tunnel network beneath the historic neighborhood of Ybor City in Tampa, Fla.

    A National Historic Landmark District, Ybor City is located northeast of downtown Tampa. The district’s tunnel network remains a source of fascination for historians and a recent report from Fox 13 gave a glimpse of the strange subterranean world.

    One theory suggests that the tunnels were used by Prohibition-era smugglers and bootleggers. There has also been speculation that the tunnels were part of a network that transported Chinese prostitutes from Cuba to the Port of Tampa to Ybor City in the early 1900s.

    MYSTERIOUS TUNNELS DISCOVERED IN FLORIDA

    A 1921 newspaper article, however, offers fresh clues as to the tunnels’ uses.

    Michael Strickland, a professor at Amridge University and independent historical researcher, contacted Fox News after seeing the Sept. 25, 1921 issue of the Tampa Tribune.

    A Tampa Tribune reporter accompanied police into the mysterious tunnels as part of an article. “Underground tunnels, hidden panels, solid, barred doors, veiled passages, lookout poops and signal devices, all relics of a bygone day and age in this city, were discovered,” the article says. “In addition, gambling paraphernalia of all kinds, celo tables, poker and bolita layouts, every device known to the ingenuous minds of the gambling fraternity, were found in what were once notorious resorts.”

    “Organized vice as such no longer exists in this city,” declares the article’s headline, with the reporter noting that former gambling joints are empty.

    MYSTERIOUS HIDDEN ROOMS UNCOVERED AT CHURCHILL’S PALACE BIRTHPLACE

    Of course, it is possible that the tunnel network was put to various uses at different times in its history.

    Founded in 1886, Ybor City is renowned for its rich architecture, which includes former cigar factories and social clubs. Fox News has reached out to Ybor City with a request for comment on this article.

    The Tampa Tribune ceased publication in 2016.

    Historic tunnels are also found in other U.S. cities, such as the Cobble Hill tunnel in Brooklyn. Built in 1844, the massive tunnel beneath a busy Brooklyn street has been described as the world’s oldest subway tunnel.

    In Canada, a network of early 20th-century utility tunnels beneath the city of Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, was used as shelter by Chinese immigrants and also by bootleggers in the 1920s. Some anecdotes even link Al Capone to the tunnels, although it has not been proved that the famous gangster visited Moose Jaw.

    Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

    More Dead Sea Scrolls may be hidden in newly discovered caves

    More Dead Sea Scrolls may be hidden in two newly discovered caves in Israel.

    LiveScience reports that the caves, dubbed 53b and 53c, are near caves where the famous artifacts were found. However, archaeologists excavating the sites have yet to find any new scrolls.

    In a paper presented at the American Schools of Oriental Research annual meeting in Denver last month, archaeologists Randall Price of Liberty University and Oren Gutfeld of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem explain that cave 53b has revealed some of its secrets. Earlier this year, a rare bronze cooking pot and an ancient oil lamp were found in the cave. “Other finds included large amounts of pottery representing store jars, flasks, cups and cooking pots, and fragments of woven textiles, braided ropes and string,” they explain in an abstract from their paper.

    DEAD SEA SCROLLS DISCOVERY: TECH REVEALS HIDDEN SCRIPT

    Archaeologists note that the caves have at least partly escaped the attention of looters in previous decades. “The significance of this discovery involves the new evidence it provides that the caves south of Qumran represent sealed loci, despite the attempts by Bedouin to loot these sites,” they write, in the abstract.

    The Caves at Qumran on the western edge of the Dead Sea, the location of where the Dead Sea scrolls were discovered. Dated 1950. (Universal History Archive/UIG via Getty Images)

    The first Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 1946 and 1947 in the Qumran caves in the Judean desert. Further scrolls were found in subsequent years, up to 1956. In total, 1,000 ancient religious manuscripts were discovered. The delicate fragments of parchment and papyrus were preserved for 2,000 years thanks to the dark, dry conditions in the caves.

    LiveScience reports that most of the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 11 caves discovered between 1946 and 1956. A single, blank scroll was found in a 12th cave that was discovered in 2017. Scroll jars, scroll wrappings, an Early Bronze Age seal, Neolithic arrowheads and pottery were also discovered in the cave.

    DEAD SEA SCROLL FRAGMENTS DISCOVERED TO BE ‘FAKES’ AT THE MUSEUM OF THE BIBLE

    The Dead Sea Scrolls are a continued source of fascination. Earlier this year, researchers at the University of Haifa announced that they have translated one of the last two parts of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

    In October the Museum of the Bible in Washington D.C. confirmed that five of its 16 Dead Sea Scroll fragments are fakes.

    Fox News’ Chris Ciaccia contributed to this article. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers