Last night, the CW's Legends of Tomorrow attempted to thwart the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in 1914. Coincidentally, yesterday I traced back the origins of the occult claim that the car carrying the archduke also carried a curse that killed a dozen people or more. It turns out that Smithsonian magazine was wrong about ufologist and Fortean broadcaster Frank Edwards inventing the story, just as occult writers are wrong about the story being true. My findings, with translations and transcriptions of the original documents can be found here.
Yesterday, the former host of America Unearthed, Scott F. Wolter, announced on Twitter that he had taken possession of what he described as a journal containing the secrets of the Templars and Oak Island. He shared pictures of the leatherbound volume, whose pages are filled with English language cursive writing, apparently in pencil. “This journal arrived from Europe today,” Wolter wrote, “and contains shocking Templars in America secrets including the answers to the Oak Island treasure mystery.” However, even Wolter’s fans quickly sensed something was amiss.
In a recent podcast interview, former television personality Scott Wolter made a bizarre assertion about prehistoric space aliens, a part of his ongoing conversion to full ancient astronaut theorist. Wolter discussed the documents he has asserted to be medieval records from the Knights Templar for the past several years, and in “new” Templar documents conveniently mirroring his own conversion to ancient alien enthusiast, he claims to have discovered evidence that space aliens intervened in human history.
Since losing his Travel Channel TV series, former America Unearthed host has been on a downward slide into the depths of conspiracy culture in search of revelation and relevance. Because he no longer has a media platform, I haven’t been covering his antics as much as in the past, but because he is a former three-time cable TV show host and likely to return to TV in some capacity in the future as the demand for filler content grows among streaming services, it’s worth noting some of the extremes Wolter embraced in his latest podcast interview.
Apparently, the only thing that onetime America Unearthed host Scott Wolter hates more than me criticizing his work is me ignoring him. I’ve been too busy working on serious, important things to care about the former TV star’s frequent radio rants, so Wolter went on The Family with Tom Barnard to spend 15 minutes badmouthing me. Lest anyone be confused, at one point he slipped and said my name instead of “the blogger.” Odd, though, that he calls me “the blogger” since my publication history, in national magazines, university press books, academic journals, etc., far outstrips his self-published books and freebie Blogspot blog.
I am busy working on projects right now, but I wanted to pause and offer this tweet from former America Unearthed host Scott F. Wolter, who has finally gone full ancient astronaut theorist after years of skirting around the edges.
Read into that what you will, but I will merely note that Ancient Aliens already covered the supposed connection between Templars and space aliens.
After a 15-month investigation, a New Jersey man has been charged with one count of criminal mischief in the vandalism attack on America's Stonehenge that left the New Hampshire colonial cold cellars wrongly believed to be an ancient Old World monument defaced with QAnon slogans. Mark Russo, 50, is currently is in jail in New Jersey waiting for extradition to New Hampshire to face trial.
In the wake of the Capitol insurrection and renewed interest in QAnon and its web of conspiracy theories, Q-believers have been trading images of a map of "hidden history" that, not coincidentally, maps exactly onto the fake history deployed by Ancient Aliens, Scott Wolter, and the History Channel, Science Channel, and Travel Channel band of speculators. To the best of my knowledge, the map was first developed in 2018 by fashion designer Dylan Louis Monroe, a Q-curious artist who displayed it at both the History Channel's AlienCon and a special 2018 exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art devoted to conspiracies theories as art. The Met called it a way to "oppose political corruption, bureaucracy, and media manipulation." You know, by accusing all of history of being a Jewish-Catholic Satanic conspiracy. As you do. Seriously, how could the Met not have considered the consequences?
For years now, I have ended each trip around the sun with a summary of the preceding twelve months in fringe history, space aliens, and the weird. Most years, these summaries run into the thousands of words because so much happened. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic and the American presidential election severely curtailed the number of extreme claims made about ancient history, as conspiracy theorists turned their attention toward disease and politics. Last year, I said I was ready for a long, difficult year to end, and now those look like the good old days. This year I published a new book and wrote two more, and I look forward to what I hope will be big things next year when publishers get a look at my newest manuscript. In the meantime, we can look back in sadness and anger.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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