Agri Dagh, a 5165 metres high mountain in Eastern Turkey, international better known by its name ‘Ararat’, is one of the mountains that has the reputation of beeing the final landingssite of Noah’s ark. One important reason for that is that it’s mentioned in the Holy Scriptures*.
Genesis 8 : 4:
“In the seventh month, on the 17th day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.”
Below you’ll find some shortened statements from the most remarkable eyewitness accounts, people that have seen or visited Noah’s ark on Mt. Ararat in the past or have seen photos of the ark.
History told by Haji Yearam, recounted by Harold Williams.
One hot summer day, sometime in the mid-1850’s:
After an extremely perilous and difficult climb, perhaps three-quarters of the way up, the small party came to a little valley on Greater Ararat, surrounded by small peaks. Here they found the prow of a mighty ship protruding from a glacier whose melting waters formed a lake, then spilled them over in a little river that tumbled down the mountainside. The summer had been unusually long and hot and the ice in part of the ship was melted out, making it possible to enter and explore some of the rooms. They found the immense structure divided into several floors and stages with compartments and with bars like animal cages of today. The entire ship was heavily coated, both inside and out, with a varnish or lacquer that was very thick and strong. The superstructure appeared much like a great and mighty house built on the hull of the ship. There was a large doorway, but the door itself was missing. From where they stood on the ground no windows could be seen.
John Joseph Nouri, Nestorian Archdeacon, said to have visited the ark, during an expedition to the source of the Euphrates.
“The wood was peculiar, dark reddish in color, almost iron colored in fact, and seemed very thick’.
Arthur Chuchian, an American, claimed that his father Jacob Chuchian saw the ark numerous times during his childhood.
‘The ark, which has a reddish-brown color, rests on a type of cleft or ledge near a steep drop off and is surrounded by the other three sides by walls of rock. The ark lies roughly in a north-south direction and just a little to the west. It is slightly tilted to the left side with the front slightly raised.’
Parts of the front are missing as well as parts of the bottom. Aproximately 13 meter of the front was exposed, another part was in water and ice. The water from the melting ice formed a pool and little waterfall.
1902 – 1905
George Hagopian, an Armenian living in the USA, declared to have visited the ark twice during his childhood, once with his uncle, when he was ten years old and another time on his own.
During his first visit he even climbed on top of it and through a hole, he was able to look inside, but he didn’t go inside. ‘It looked like it was made out of one piece.’ The ship was long, he remembered, not square or round, and the sides tipped out. The part of the bottom that was visible, was like the roof, as flat as can be. There was no door on the side they examined, only the window-holes in the top under the overhanging roof, about eighteen inches high and perhaps thirty inches long; many of them, he remembered, perhaps fifty, he couldn’t count them all, he said, ran along the side. The grain was plainly visible but appeared almost petrified, as hard as rock .. the wood was dark brown .. it looked exactly like a barge .. the nose was flat in front. Many other boys had seen it too.
Duran Ayranci from Adana, declared that six of his friends, soldiers from the Turkish Army, saw the ark.
‘His friends claimed the ark was positioned in a north-south direction near the top of Agri Dagh. Wooden pegs held it together. Portions were decayed and broken, but most of it was preserved in the glacial ice’.
Zabolotsky, lieutenant in the Russian Army saw the ark on Mt.Ararat from out of an airplane.
Boris Vasilivich Rujansky, sergeant in the Russian Army, joint the Russian expedition which was a follow up on the sighting.
‘Part of the ark which was in the ice, was found in the saddle of two peaks. Through a broken hatchway near the front they were able to “enter a very narrow room with a high ceiling.” From here, side by side to it, rooms of various size stretched along a corridor, among which one very large room. It was not possible to count them, because many were full of ice. A corridor was overloaded with broken partitions.’
Guillford Officer flew around Mount Ararat in 1918 together with an Army pilot . “When the men reached the mountain, … they had flown clockwise around the peak three times before they gained the necessarry altitude. As the men crossed the Ahora Gorge at approximately 14,000 feet and turned south, they were surprised to find themselves nearly level with a great ship in a small lake valley, half-exposed and protruding from a melting glacier, with deep snow still piled on the back. It was about noon on a hot July day, and the ship stood out clearly in the bright sunlight.
Ed Davis, sergeant in the U.S. Army, was lead to the ark by family Abas.
According to Davis, ’..a huge rectangular man-made structure, lying on its side, partly covered by a talus of ice and rock. At least 30 meters were clearly visible. I can even see inside it, into the end where it’s been broken off, timbers are sticking out, kind of twisted and gnarled, water’s cascading out from under it’.
Davis was aloud to see the ark from a distance, but not to go and touch it: “They said there’s a curse on the ark. People once stayed inside and died because of lung infection or from a bactery in their lungs.” Abas told Davis that ‘during many years the ark is covered by ice and snow’.
Vince Will, U.S. Air Force Sergeant, saw the structure 10 till 15 seconds during a flight over Ararat.
‘I think it’s a bit above the 4300 meter up the mountain’.
We flew along the west side and at about 16,500 ft. Suddenly the plane made a turn to the right, this shook me up some as we knew the Russian border was close to the other side of the mountain. I went up to the cockpit and was about to inquire about our turning when the co-pilot said, “What the heck is that?”
…I looked out his window and there to our right was a canyon with a barge-like structure in it. The barge-like thing made a perfect rectangle. It was surrounded by ice or snow on all sides. Looking down on it again this object had a resemblance to barges one sees on rivers, except it appeared to be much longer. My first impression of this barge was simple, crude and long. The terrain was broken up with canyons and deep ravines. …We descended to the level (about 14,500 ft.) which the barge was in. Soon we were abeam the barge. I was stunned. It was so clear and left no doubt it was made by man. …The only part of the mountain of interest was this one ravine or canyon.
Early in September a Kurdish farmer named Reshid was about two-thirds of the way up the 16,969-foot peak when he came upon an object he had never seen before, although he had been up the mountain many times. He moved around it and then climbed higher to examine it from above. There, Reshid said it was the prow of a ship protruding into a canyon down which tons of melting ice and snow had been gushing for more than two months. The prow was almost entirely revealed, but the rest of the object still was covered. The contour of the earth, Reshid said, indicated the invisible part of the object was shaped like a ship. The prow, he added, was about the size of a house. Reshid climbed down to it and with his dagger tried to beak off a piece of the bow. It was so hard it would not break. It was blackened with age. Reshid insisted it was not a simple rock formation. “I know a ship when I see one,” he said. “This is a ship.” He spread the word among little villages at the base of the mountain and peasants began climbing up its northern slope to see the weird thing he had found. Each who came back said it was a ship.
An anonymous U2 pilot, during a flight over Mt.Ararat saw, between the 4300 meter and 4600 meter high,
‘an object that was very odd to its surrounding. A man-made structure protruding 6 to 8 meters from a glacier. The object was very dark, long and rectangular and had some damage’. He concluded this had to be Noah’s ark.
It was on the 11th of August of 1952 that Akki Usta, an old Turkish gentlemen, known as the historian of Igdir, said to the French explorer Fernand Navarra and his companions:
‘While Noah, his family and the animals were able to descent from Ararat, and go in the direction of Ahora and Yerevan, the ark stayed on the mountain. You know that. Now listen to what I’m going to say. The ark is still there! This I was told by the greybeards, and they were told it equally by those who were old during their youth. And all of us here believe it. All the people of Igdir, of Bayazit, of Yerevan, to the last shepherd on the Twin Mountains, all believe it. And we shall hand on that believe to our children with the bounden duty of passing it on to their descendants.’
George Jefferson Greene, a geologist, took a serie of photos of the ark which were seen by his family and friends.
Greene described the ark as ‘lying in a north-south direction, on a big shelf, at the side of a vertical cliff.
‘It was protruding from a snowfield or glacier, about one-third was visible, the rest being covered up by not only snow, but also by rock debris and mud.
Clear planking up to the roof was visible at the side of the ship’.
After the discovery Greene only lived another nine years before he was found dead, under suspicious circumstances, in a hotel in British Guiana, while the photos were never traced again.
Shortly after Greene’s return from Turkey, he found himself with an oil prospecting crew in Kanab, Utah. Here in a motel in 1954 he met another oil engineer a Fred Drake, to whom he showed his photos and related the story of his find. Drake: “I’ve seen actual photographs of the Ark! There were six clear photographs, taken from different angles as they flew around the ship.”
Bill (William) Todd, Navy Photographer, took photos of the ark from out of an airplane.
‘It was a rectangular, slate-colored boat. Everyone stated it was Noah’s ark. About 10 meters of the structure was protruding from the ice.’
From a 1996 interview; Bill: “We gave four or five copies of the pictures to all of our crew. The whole squadron of six mapping planes was abuzz about Noah’s Ark and everyday some plane “accidentally” went by Ararat to see it. You practically needed a control tower around Ararat that summer. After seeing the photos, we were convinced that the structure was Noah’s Ark.
Bill made 18 x 9 inch prints. His copy was loaned to his sons Sunday school teacher 40 years ago, but they never returned it.
Gregor Schwinghammer, Air Force Pilot, was shown the ark by a Turkish pilot.
‘It looked like a big, rectangular barge-type construction protruding from the mountain.
It was situated in a horse-shoe depression and was clearly manmade.’
Gus Pipkin, U.S. Air Force Pilot, saw a part of a boat surrounded by rocks on the mountain from out of his airplane.
‘There was no point or bow shape to the boatlike object.’ Pipkin looked down to a dark grey object which had a whitish outline and he saw colors of brown, tans and oranges.
Ed Behling, a man from the American Air Force, was lead to the ark by his friend Mustapha and saw the ark from out of a higher location.
‘I looked down and there was this massive black object on a shelf of rock and it fades into a snow bank.
Al Shappell, a U.S. Navy Lieutenant, saw the structure during a flight over Mt.Ararat.
‘It was a coal-black foreign object…oblong and partially buried in ice,..it also appeared as though it didn’t belong on the mountain. It was just totally out of place.
Dale Nice, a businessman from Cortez, Colorado, announced that he had seen a picture of the Ark in World War II. Not only that, but his wartime buddy, Roy Tibbetts, who had served with him in the Seabees in New Guinea, also lived in the area and he too had seen the picture. It seems that an Australian whom they remembered only as “R. Taylor” had come to their tent to look up one of their platoon members, a “Wes” Taylor, to learn if there might possibly be any relation between them. It was during his brief visit that the “Aussie”,” as they called him, had shown them several pictures that he carried in the breast pocket of his battle jack,.. Dale Nice remembers looking at only one, but Roy Tibbetts recalls seeing at least two pictures, not exactly identical, but very similar. The photo was very clear, and the men recalled it distinctly, although they had not been particularly interested in hearing about the Ark at the time. It was probably during his European tour of duty that Taylor, described as an adventurous type, had made his journey to Ararat, where he told them he had climbed the mountain and photographed the Ark. The object, which Taylor had assured them was Noah’s Ark, appears to sit in a small basin which was situated in a larger basin, surrounded by snowfields. It looked to be slightly tilted to one side, also possibly slanting a bit downhill and grounded on the shore of a small pool of water at one end. Both ends were still buried in snow, and the object leaned against a “dike” or “hogback” or “ridge,” protruding some thirty to forty feet above the snow. …The Ark, the men said, was very dark, but not as black in color as the rocky ridge it was leaning against, and it seemed to be sitting at an angle, “kind of on its side.”Right at the end of it, recalled Nice, was what he took to be melted glacier water. “It was clear, a different color or shade than the surrounding ice fields. I took it to be ice water.” …The top appeared to be slightly rounded, perhaps because of the tilt, no catwalk or windows were visible in the photos. Said Nice: ” The thing that impressed me was that there was a little pond of water there. I couldn’t figure that out, at that altitude….” Was the ship quite close to the hogback? “Yes,” replied Tibbetts, “right at the base of it.”
Ahmet Ertugrul, born in the region of Mt. Ararat, has been well-acknowledged of the cultural influence of Noah’s Ark in his hometown. He is a professional mountain climber. For the last two decades, he is dedicated to searching of the Ark, aiming at revealing the truth of Noah’s Ark. In July 2008, he discovered a large wooden structure on Mt. Ararat by tracing some clues collected. Accompanied by a photographer, he took some photos and this expedition led to an amazing discovery. Ahmet Ertugrul: “I got to know the secret location in June 2008. My source told me that this is Noah’s Ark. I took a team there to search around the region and found a wooden structure. I took some photographs of the interior structure.Ahmet Ertugrul
Panda Lee said, “In October 2008, I climbed the mountain with the Turkish team. At an elevation of more than 4,000 metres, I saw a structure built with plank-like timber. Each plank was about 8 inches wide. I could see tenons, proof of ancient construction predating the use of metal nails. We walked about 100 metres to another site. I could see broken wood fragments embedded in a glacier, and some 20 metres long. I surveyed the landscape and found that the wooden structure was permanently covered by ice and volcanic rocks. Prior to my trip, the Turkish team had excavated the site to expose the structure.”
Ararat Team 2009
SEVEN SPACES REVEALED
Man-fai YUEN, a representative of NAMI, said at the press conference, “The search team and I personally entered a wooden structure high on the mountain. The structure is partitioned into different spaces. We believe that the wooden structure we entered is the same structure recorded in historical accounts and the same ancient boat referred to by the locals.”
The wooden structure discovered by the team is broken, so members had to enter the structure through various openings. Up until now, the team has discovered seven spaces. One of the team members, Wing-cheung YEUNG explained during the press conference:
1. One of the spaces discovered was frozen in ice. Under the ice is wood, with a wooden beam above. There is a tenon construction on the wall, obviously an artificial structure.
2. The first space witnessed by Panda Lee was L-shaped. Its features were very similar to those of some of the spaces discovered later, features such as tenon construction. We concluded that it was originally a box-shaped room, now heavily decomposed.
3. This third space is more than 5 metres high. Team members had to enter through a broken opening and abseil down to get inside. All the walls are wood and the space is not box-shaped. The walls of this area are not vertical but are rather curved and inclined. There is a small door on one side, roughly one meter high and half a meter wide, which presumably leads to another space; but our team did not risk going further due to the lack of oxygen.
4. This room is box-shaped, with dimensions (height, width and length) of more than two metres. There is a wooden beam with wooden pegs along one side of the wall. It is believed that ropes may have been hooked on these pegs to keep animals in place. Along another wall, there are racks.
5. A very small tunnel-like space connects two of the other spaces.
6. A few wooden staircases were found inside the structure, appearing to have been carved from logs. Our team climbed up one of these stairways and found a door in the ceiling, concluding that the wooden structure therefore has more than one floor. We tried to open it but failed. Since we did not want to destroy the structure, we will try again with appropriate equipment in the future.
7. The team has not entered this final space. They viewed it and took photographs from a small opening above. The height and width are estimated to be 5 metres and 12 metres respectively.
Dutch archeologist and Belgian physician confirm: Remains of wooden structure and pottery found on Mount Ararat, Turkey. Two video clips from the YouTube video: Trailer: The Mystery of Mount Ararat In courtesy of Inside Mount Ararat and The Mystery of Mount Ararat
Sheila Bishop and Philip Williams.
Philip: “……Now feeling well and fully aware of my surroundings, I move into position to descend into the passage. As we make our way down and through the long snow-covered ice tunnel, I notice the passage turning toward a level floor. I loose one of my crampons along the descent. The floor now turning level, it doesn’t much matter.
Shining our flashlights to my left, I see several pieces of worked wooden boards sticking out from the floor and wall. I take off my gloves so as to operate the camera. I use my other hand as a measure.Photo: Philip Williams
For some miles before reaching High Camp until I notice those first well-finished wooden boards, aside from what we had brought, I had seen nothing on this mountain but rocks, snow, and ice. Ahead and behind us and on every side lay a monotonous menagerie of smooth-sided broken rocks either completely or partially covered by snow and ice.
As we shine our lights further down the passage where we are walking, that scene suddenly changes.
As our flashlights survey the end of the tunnel, I see a long passage between two walls that narrows towards the top. The wall to our left slants outward as it reaches the floor with worked wooden pieces sticking out here and there.
I am astonished by the very high, very straight, and very long wall to our right. Wide horizontal boards are visible behind a thick coating of ice. The wall appears bowed slightly inward as one looks towards the bottom. What seems to be a wooden floor covered with ice is remarkably level all along the passage. The walled passage extends as far as our flashlights can reach into the darkness.
“What to make of this underground cathedral!” Or might it be a giant warehouse?
Peering to my right at what appears a straight though slightly bowed hull, I say to myself: “It might also be a great ship.”
I move quickly from place to place, aiming to record with my camera the most interesting features and structures. I see several exposed mortise and tenon joints, the boards apparently having broken free from their original placement. I also notice many square pegs having broken free from the square holes that once contained them. I see no evidence of nails or any metal used for fastening the boards, though it seems that the builder had to use metal tools to cut and work the boards.
….. the guides restrain me from climbing over what appears a wooden brace in front of our passage so as to head deeper along what appears a bowed wall. The translucent ice seem to reveal the blackened wall that I had noticed from the photograph of this site taken a few years ago. The entire wall is constructed of long, wide, straight horizontal boards.
We look at the edge of the floor to our left. Cracks along the wall reveal a large compartment below. The guides point to a similar compartment above our heads.
The guides tell us that we have entered the structure’s second level.Photo: Philip Williams – “Cracks along the wall reveal a large compartment below”
I want to stay, to study, and record, but …we also have to get off the mountain while it is still light.
…. Know that two American witnesses report that:
our eyes have seen, our hands have touched, our cameras have recorded a wooden structure of what appear several large floors buried under many tons of volcanic rock and ice above 4000 meters on the south side of Greater Mount Ararat. The local villagers have believed it to be Noah’s Ark since the earthquake of 1840 unveiled it. Whatever this is, it is hardly of recent fabrication. It could never have been constructed in situ at this deep and dangerous site where we visited it. It is deserving of the most serious archaeological and scientific study. “
To be continued …..
As mentioned above, these testimonies are just short excerpts from (sometimes long) eyewitness accounts.
For information on the October 15 Announcement in Charlotte N.C. U.S.A. concerning news about the Ararat discovery; Press Kit available at araratdiscoveries.com
Below some October 2015 press photos from a serie released by araratdiscoveries.com
*The Holy Scriptures