R. Cedric Leonard (1934-2022)* was from Oklahoma and has worked as an electronic technician, initially in the U.S. Navy and later in private industry, from which he retired in 1990. He studied Comparative Religion, Sanskrit and Classical Greek and has a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Oklahoma. He is also self-taught in Egyptian, Canaanite and Phoenician inscriptions. He has also speculated on the possibility of the Phoenician alphabet having its origins in Atlantis and the possibility of a connection with the Glozel Tablets(c).
His Sanskrit studies led him to investigate stories of the Vimanas or ancient Hindu flying machines. He has produced several booksand scientific papers on the subject of Atlantis and ancient India. He has also written on the existence of UFOs in ancient Egypt(d), Mesopotamia(h) and the Bible, particularly the Book of Ezekiel(e). He has also produced a paper(f) about archaeological mysteries in general.
He located Atlantis along The Mid-Atlantic Ridge and offered geological, mythological, linguistic as well as paleontological evidence to support this idea and for its destruction following worldwide catastrophes around 10,000 BC. He also wrote a paper(g) on the asteroid/comet impact around the same time, which created the Carolina Bays and its possible connection with the destruction of Atlantis. This encounter was brought to the notice of a wider audience by Richard Firestone and his colleagues in their book, The Cycle of Cosmic Catastrophes.
Before retirement, Leonard supported Posnansky‘s early date for Tiwanaku citing a number of astronomers who endorsed his chronology. “Between 1927 and 1930 Prof. Posnansky’s conclusions were studied intensively by a number of authorities. Dr. Hans Ludendorff (Director of the Astronomical Observatory of Potsdam), Friedrich Becker of the Specula Vaticana, Prof. Arnold Kohlschutter (astronomer at Bonn University), and Rolf Müller (astronomer of the Institute of Astrophysics at Potsdam) verified the accuracy of Posnansky’s calculations and vouched for the reliability of his conclusions.
The conventional practice of dating Tiahuanacu as beginning c. 200 A.D. and collapsing c. 1000 A.D. started with Wendell Bennett’s excavations, which turned up numerous examples of pottery, small statues and other artifacts. Since it is common for later arrivals to be awed by massive ruins (sometimes attributing their origin to supernatural beings, thus replicating the “sacred” images on their own pottery and textiles), I think it is a mistake to fuse the two cultures into one, implying that the later arrivals were the same people who built the original ruins. I believe Bennett and his successors are all guilty of such an error” (i).
Leonard recognised that his belief in prehistoric flying machines may lead some readers to dismiss his carefully thought-out theory on Atlantis, but he is adamant that both existed. Nevertheless, it is fair to say that Leonard is one of the few writers on the subject who has produced original material to support the idea of Atlantis’ existence.
Some of Leonard’s work can be found plagiarised on the Internet, most blatantly by the artist, Charles Alexander Moffat(b).
>I have only just discovered that Leonard died on Jan 17, 2022.<
(h) See: Archive 2881
‘Colonel’ James Churchward (1851-1936) was a British engineer and patent holder. However, his most famous invention was ‘the land of Mu‘, an imaginary counterpart of Atlantis, supposedly situated in the Pacific. He wrote six books +++++ between 1926 and 1935 to promote this brainchild. Although based on material dating back to 1927 the last volume, Books of the Golden Age, was not published until 1997.
He also gave more than two dozen radio lectures on New York’s station WNYC between 1924 and 1925(q).
Churchward claimed to have gained his knowledge of Mu from the so-called Naacal Tablets which were translated for him by an Indian priest. Jason Colavito has recently expanded on this matter in a recent blog(i).
Readers might be interested in reading a newspaper report from 1932 in which he claimed the existence of flying machines in ancient India(k). This idea was subsequently adopted by Pauwels & Bergier, copied by Von Däniken and more recently stolen by Hatcher Childress. Colavito has written a valuable piece(l) on the origin and evolution of the story of vimanas in ancient Indian literature and debunked the suggestion that they were some early UFO.
On April 23, 1933, The New York Times described “Mr Churchward is an authority, the only authority there is, on the Lost Continent of Mu. It is, in fact, his continent, by all the rights there are of discovery, invention, evidence, conviction of reality that deal with intangible things.”
The kindest thing that I can say is that Churchward’s most valuable contribution to literature was A Big Game and Fishing Guide to Northeastern Maine, published in 1898. Two of the many gems offered by Churchward are (1) “Christ’s last words on the cross were in the language of Mu” and (2) “the sun is not a superheated body; it is a cool body but highly magnetic”(b) !!!
Fortunately, geological knowledge today clearly demonstrates that Churchward’s vast island of Mu is as impossible as Donnelly’s Atlantic Atlantis. However, although Churchward also accepted that Atlantis was a mid-Atlantic continent, I am tempted to think that he invented Mu in the Pacific in the hope of emulating Donnelly’s publishing success with Atlantis. A critical review(h) of Churchward’s theories, in French, is available on the Internet.
James Churchward’s younger brother, Albert (1852-1925)(right), was a Masonic writer, who was the author of The Origin and Evolution of the Human Race. It is interesting that this book, now available online(j), does not refer to either Mu or Atlantis.
An extensive paper written by his god-daughter, Joan Griffith, about his life and work is available online(a). Churchward’s great-grandson, Jack, also has a website(d) dedicated to telling his story. This includes an acceptance(s) that the rank of ‘colonel’ used by his great-grandfather was, on balance, another invention.>However, both Jack (Podcast 20)(r) and Joan(a) have defended the authenticity of Churchward’s military background with newspaper clippings and an article that was “published in 2001 by the World Explorer Club and authored by Joan Griffith entitled, “James Churchward and His Lost Pacific Continent — Lost Continent or Lost Cause?”
The article asserts that Peter Tompkins in the “Mysteries of the Mexican Pyramids” reveals that James was a member of British Intelligence. Due to the classified nature of his service, the British government has refused to acknowledge that he served. This is the reason that nobody can see his real records. If this were true it would be very convincing.”
At this point I was pondering on why it would still be a military secret a century later and decided to look at Jack’s Podcast 21(s) and found there a most startling admission by Jack Churchward;
“In summary, I believe that the evidence shows that James Churchward was not a Colonel in the British Army and the use of the title was unearned. While this is the conclusion I reached given the evidence, I would be absolutely dumbfounded if someone did not disagree. If I have overlooked something, I am more than willing to re-evaluate the subject with any new evidence that is presented.
On the other hand, James, as a showman, needed the title to create the atmosphere and keep his audience enthralled. At the end of the day, if James used the title to bolster his presentation and sell himself to make a living, then who am I to judge him?”
If Jack is correct you can reasonably ask ‘what else did the ‘colonel’ lie about?’<
Jack also admitted(m) the unreliability of James’ translation of the Troano Manuscript, influenced as it was by the earlier seriously flawed attempts by Bishop Diego De Landa (1524-1579), de Bourbourg and LePlongeon. Jack has also written a couple of articles comparing the ideas of Churchward and LePlongeon(o).
Some years ago Frank Joseph wrote an article for Atlantis Rising magazine #30 in which he claimed that Churchward had been ‘corroborated’ but failed to mention that this corroboration only took place in Joseph’s fertile imagination! In fact, the article title is misleading and in my opinion, its content is just blather padded with waffle(p).
Most of Churchward’s Mu books can be read or downloaded online using the links below.
(h) http://ukko.free.fr/mu.htm (French)
(p) Atlantis Rising magazine #30 http://pdfarchive.info/index.php?pages/At
David Hatcher Childress (1957- )(d) >was born in France to American parents.<He is a prolific writer on the subject of ancient civilisations, having written a series on ‘Lost Cities’. He describes himself as a ‘rogue archaeologist’. He has had an exciting life(a) worthy of a book itself. His literary output, which deals extensively with ‘ancient technologies’, is somewhat speculative and inclined to veer close to the ravings of Erich von Däniken.
A link to several of Childress’ papers is available(h).
In 2016, Childress, in Ark of God , repeated old speculation that the Ark of the Covenant was capable of flight, suggesting that the Ark was an example of advanced ancient technology!>Which begs the question, if it could fly, why did it need carrying poles?<
Childress extended his interest in the possibility of advanced ancient technology in Vimana Aircraft of Ancient India and Atlantis . I can only assume that ‘Atlantis’ was added to the title as a marketing ploy, as it would be more recognisable than ‘vimana. He also offers some of the content in a short paper(g).
Some time ago Jason Colavito tackled the matter of Childress’ vimanas, noting the development of the use of the word in Hindu mythology, but crucially pointing out that “The concept of these flying chariots as UFO-style airships originates in a fraud, the Vaimanika Shastra, allegedly an ancient Sanskrit epic, but one “channeled” from the astral realm by a Hindu psychic in 1918. No evidence of this text exists prior to 1952, and even the “translator” of the text makes explicit that it was channeled from the spirit world between 1918 and 1923. The fake text specifically compares the vimanas to modern aircraft, describing their propulsion systems and other modern technological achievements.” (i).
However, on the subject of Atlantis, he has kept his options open by listing ten possible locations for Atlantis(b). You would imagine that an archaeologist ‘rogue’ or otherwise would be prepared to express a clearer opinion. However, if you are a book publisher as well, there is no point in competing with your clients, so it is safer to sit on the fence. Nevertheless, in the 2007 DVD, Atlantis: Secret Star-Mappers of a Lost World, Childress identifies the Baltic as the original home of the Sea Peoples, reminiscent of the theories of Jürgen Spanuth, half a century earlier.
>In 2018 and in a number of previous editions of Ancient Aliens, Childress endorsed the daft idea that our Moon is hollow and artificial. Jason Colavito noted that this idea has “been going around for the past half-century, based on a piece of Russian propaganda from the 1960s aimed at Western audiences. Childress alleged that aliens created the moon by inflating an asteroid. Yes, really. “Like a glass blower blows glass, you go out into the asteroid belt, get yourself an asteroid, and with your alien technology you superheat that asteroid. Then you blow into it to make a giant space station,” he said. That seems like rather a lot of work to avoid showing yourself to humans.(k)“<
His Lost Cities of Atlantis, Ancient Europe and the Mediterranean is a volume that does not lead to any firm conclusions as it tends to see evidence of Atlantis everywhere. Nevertheless, although Childress has written at least six books in the ‘Lost Cities’ series, only the one dealing with Europe and the Mediterranean that includes Atlantis in the title, which may indicate his belief that it had existed in that region of the world! However, he does offer a number of interesting tidbits such as his view [p.61] that the ancient Egyptians and the Hittites were successors of the Atlanteans and his suggestion that the landbridge linking Europe and Africa at Gibraltar was breached around 9000 BC [p.261]. Unfortunately, he offers nothing by way of evidence to support these claims.
Childress claims that he was researching a book on Atlantis [p.450] but nowhere does he unequivocally reveal his conclusions on the subject. On the other hand, he may have wished to avoid conflicting with the opinions of his clients as he was also the founder of Adventures Unlimited Press, which has published a number of books on Atlantis including reprints of many of the classic books on the subject.
2000 finally saw Childress reveal his preferred location for Atlantis in his Technology of the Gods, where he says “Atlantis, I believe, is beneath the mid-Atlantic in the vicinity of the Azores and the Bahamas” [1355.334]
Jason Colavito has written a four-part review of this book(e) in which he is highly critical of Childress’ penchant for recycling his own work, provocatively referring to it as self-plagiarism! Colavito also records Childress’ courtroom appearances(f).