Friday, May 02, 2014

Hopkinton RI's "Gold Standard Turtle"

Some experts say:
 All stone piles were created as
 farmers piled stones as they cleared fields. 

It takes a very particular type of fool
 to look at a carefully designed and constructed object
 and declare it "random discard."
 - a friend of mine said that.

"This is the “Gold Standard” for an Indigenous Sculpture of a Turtle.
This is one is found on the Hopkinton Land Trust’s Trail near the Town DPW building," Tom Helmer writes.

"The Narragansett sculpted rocks into Animal Effigies...In Narragansett Theology, many of the items in a Spiritual Landscape are considered “Perpetual Prayers”. Were their rocks disassembled, and then meticulously restored in the exact same location, the rocks might look exactly the same, but the prayer has been destroyed. Please, do not mess with what you don’t understand. Leave things undisturbed when you find them...Narragansett artists were not content to make small sculptures of hunting animals from single stones. They also created large works of art, using multiple stones, depicting animals which were Sacred to them.
(Norman Muller Photo that I have disfigured in my paint program - Tom includes some of Norman's fine work here:

"This is perhaps the most beautiful Indigenous sculpture that is known, so far, in Hopkinton’s Tomaquag Valley.   So what is it?" Mr. Helmer asks - and I think I know the answer:  
"Yes, it is a turtle three feet high, five feet wide and six feet long. The Turtle, “Tun-up-pa-sog” in Narragansett, was an extremely sacred animal to many/most Indigenous Tribes all across North America.
The Turtle was the symbolic representation of “Nooh-ka-sah-kee”, Mother Earth. Please note the cavity for offerings located below the head and to the right..." 

(I need photo credits!!! Could be Larry Harrop's or Bob Miner's? Heck: there's an oral history page of Miner's Farm tom has put up:

Jim Porter kindly sent me some of the above images, as well as a few of his from other places nearby, and I'll include them - and thank him once again!

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