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Episode 30 of 365

030-The Oak Island Money Pit

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Nova Scotia's Oak Island hides a famously booby-trapped treasure cache -- or so goes the legend. In this episode of the Futility Closet podcast, we review the many attempts to recover the treasure and wonder who could have engineered such a site, what might be hidden there -- and whether, indeed, it contains anything at all. We also puzzle over what a woman's errands can tell us about how her husband died.
Sources for our segment on Oak Island:
"The Secrets of Oak Island", Joe Nickell, Skeptical Inquirer, March/April 2000.
Richard Joltes, "History, Hoax, and Hype: The Oak Island Legend", Critical Enquiry, accessed Oct. 19, 2014.
Edwin Teale, "Mystery Island Baffles Treasure Hunters," Popular Science, May 1939.
D'Arcy O'Connor, The Money Pit, 1978.
The image above shows the dig as it existed in August 1931. Below is 27-year-old Franklin Roosevelt (third from right) at the 1909 dig:
This week's lateral thinking puzzle was contributed by listener Nicholas Madrid.
You can listen using the player above, download this episode directly, or subscribe on iTunes or via the RSS feed at
Many thanks to Doug Ross for the music in this episode.
If you have any questions or comments you can reach us at Thanks for listening!