8 things you may not know about the mystery of Oak Island and its ‘buried treasure’

Oak Island. Image copyright 2015 DigitalGlobe

Oak Island. Image copyright 2015 DigitalGlobe

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1. Oak Island is a 57-hectare (140-acre) island in Lunenburg County on the south shore of Nova Scotia, Canada. The tree-covered island is one of about 360 small islands in Mahone Bay.

2. The Island is privately owned and gated.

3. Theories of what could be buried on Oak Island from pirate gold, Spanish treasure, Knights Templar treasure, a Rosicrucian vault, King Solomon’s temple treasure, the Ark of the Covenant, ancient Egyptian tomb, or the lost Shakespeare manuscripts.

4. Six people have been killed in attempts to excavate the pits below Oak Island.

5. The Oak Island Treasure Act came into effect on 1 January 2011 and allows for treasure hunting to continue on the island under the terms of a licence issued by the Minister of Natural Resources.

6. Mark Finnan in his book Oak Island Secrets[59] noted that many Masonic markings were found on Oak Island and pointed out that the shaft or pit and its mysterious contents seemed to replicate aspects of a Masonic initiation rite involving a hidden vault containing a sacred treasure.

7. Critic Joe Nickell argues that there is no treasure and that the apparent pit is a natural phenomenon, likely a sinkhole connected to limestone passages or caverns

8. In 2012, the island was featured in the video game Assassin’s Creed III by Ubisoft. The player reaches Oak Island by completing quests related to Captain Kidd. Inside is a cave full of natural emeralds and an equip-able ring that deflects enemy bullets.

The memorial to those who have died pursuing the Oak Island quest

The memorial to those who have died pursuing the Oak Island quest