The American naturalist and cryptozoologist Ivan T. Sanderson coined the term OOPArt , which means artifact out of place (out of place artifact in English). These are objects of historical, archaeological or paleontological interest that have been found in a very unusual place, considered too advanced for their time or that demonstrate the presence of humans before it was known that they existed. The acronym is rarely used by historians or scientists and is limited mainly to the terminology of cryptozoologists, defenders of the theories of ancient astronauts and travel in time.
Detractors argue that some experts use questionable methods to interpret these surprising findings. They believe that most OOPArts are simply misinterpretations or the assumption that a particular culture could not have created an artifact or technology due to its lack of knowledge. But even then hundreds of OOPArts have been discovered around the world that continue without explanation. That said, if Christopher Columbus discovered the New World in 1492, then how did a Spanish coin minted 200 years before his arrival end up in Utah?
That is the question that National Park Service (NPS) officials are trying to answer after the recent discovery of two mysterious coins near Lake Powell.
The strange coins
As reported by the US media KSL, last September a hiker was walking near Halls Crossing Marina when he found two circular metal objects that he thought were garbage, one the size of “25 cents” and the other smaller than a coin of “10 cents” . But when he looked more closely at them later, I note with astonishment that they were really two Spanish coins from hundreds of years ago.
The hiker began to search for coins online and discovered that the largest coincided with the Spanish coins minted in Madrid in the 1660s, while the smallest one seems to date back to the 1290s.
Controversy with timelines
It seems that the smallest coin is the one that has created mystery to the discovery since it predates the arrival of Columbus to the New World. It is also curious how Spanish coins have ended up in Utah since subsequent exploration trips through the American West are not close to the area where the coin was found. According to historians, the Spanish conquistador Francisco Vázquez de Coronado was the first to travel near Utah in his search for the mythical “Seven Golden Cities” in the early 1540s. But the closest he came was to the Hopi villages in northern Arizona, more than 160 kilometers to the south.
The hiker handed the coins to the National Park Service after the discovery, and officials are now looking for experts to help them figure out if the coins are real and, if so, how they ended up in the park.
Brian Harmon, the archaeologist with the National Park Service, told Business Insider that there are some different possibilities that are being investigated. Those possibilities include scenarios in which the coins are real and were brought to the area by the first Spanish explorers or settlers, and ended up in Utah after being exchanged. Another option is for them to be real, but they were accidentally lost in the lake, perhaps by a treasure hunt. Finally, there is a possibility that the coins are false or reproductions. While Harmon admits that he is not a currency expert, he believes they are true and that they ended up in Utah because of a former Spanish settler or explorer, since it would mean that there was a Spanish presence in the area much earlier than initially thought.
Park officials kept the discovery secret until recently, and have not wanted to reveal the exact location where the coins were discovered. They also warn that the use of metal detectors in national parks is illegal. The American archaeologist said he is thinking of traveling to the place where the coins were found to look for clues about how the coins arrived.
And this has provoked a heated debate in social networks about the true origin of the moneadas. It is true that many agree with Brian Harmon’s theory, but it is also true that others point out that the coins are OOPArts, out of place and time artifacts. Also, remember that the find in Utah is similar to the mysterious coin found in a work in Mexico in 2018. In this case what caught his attention most was the inscriptions he had engraved on it: 2039, the symbol of the Nazi Party, the eagle and the swastika, as well as some words written in Spanish that said “New Germany”.
What do you think about the currencies of Utah? Is it about OOPArts? A test of time travelers? Or is there a logical and rational explanation?