These Stones Bear Witness by Richard White

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Columbus discovered America. So they say. But what of Leif Ericsson? What of St. Brendan? Who inscribed that anguished message on the Kensington Rune Stone? And who was The Westford Knight?We are sure that Columbus made it to San Salvador – and back. And the Icelandic Saga shores up faith in Leif Ericsson’s voyage to North America, although scholarly opinion of the Vinland map seems to change every 10 years or so. St. Brendan’s adventure has been pretty generally dismissed as mere myth- as if myth could not be rooted in truth. And the case of the Kensington Rune Stone continues to generate controversy, despite an impressive accumulation of evidence, both environmental and linguistic. And then there is the Westford Knight. In 1954, the late Frank Glynn uncovered the figure of a knight in full armor incised on a slab of glacial rock along a roadside in Westford, Massachusetts. The Knight’s helmet, sword and shield all date to a specific decade in the evolution of armor and arms. And the emblem on the shield represents the armorial bearings of Clan Gunn, a noble family based in Scotland’s County Caithness. The figure is, in fact, a classic military effigy, a type of monument commonly found in ancient gravesites in Scotland and in the north of England. So what was the Knight doing here?Facts cited in this little book suggest that The Westford Knight sailed westward with his high-born kinsman, Henry Sinclair, baron of Rosslyn and Earl of Orkney, in the service of The Lady King. The author presents the evidence: THESE STONES BEAR WITNESS. The verdict is for the reader to decide.

Richard White is the author of four published novels. This is his first foray into non-fiction. The Sinclair saga inspired White’s first book, SWORD OF THE NORTH (Green Hill, 1983). The story haunts him still. Hence the birth of this work. In quest of facts, White has trekked through New England, and on to Scotland, the Orkneys and to Nova Scotia. He has scoured libraries at home and abroad, and tapped informed sources that include the Rt. Hon. Malcom, Earl of Caithness and chief of Clan Sinclair; Dr. Stephen Augustine, hereditary chief of the native Micmac people of Canada; Sir Iain Moncreiffe of that Ilk, late herald to H.R.H. Elizabeth II; Major Niven Sinclair, who vetted the manuscript, and the late Frank Glynn, who uncovered the effigy of The Westford Knight on a roadside in Massachusetts, thus sparking renewed interest – and the ongoing controversy – concerning the Atlantic crossing in 1398 of Henry Sinclair, baron of Rosslyn and lord of the Orkney isles. Richard White, former journalist and veteran teacher, holds the M.A. degree from Tr4inity College. He is a writer-in-residence and a member of the English Faculty at the Williams School in New London, Connecticut.

About Richard White

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Richard White, professor of History at the University of Washington in Seattle, is the author of "The Middle Ground" and "It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own" and the recipient of the Albert J. Beveridge and Western Heritage awards.
Published August 31, 2010 by AuthorHouse. 232 pages
Genres: History. Non-fiction

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