As the sands of the coast of Hawaii started to shift, they revealed petroglyphs as old as 400 years. The discovery was made by two tourists from Ft. Worth, Texas, while they had a walk in the sunset near the beach of Wai’anae.
The tourists explain that a ray of light helped them to discover the carvings. The sun pointed them directly to the petroglyphs, and it was by mere chance that they managed to spot the drawings.
The figure that they first saw was a large one, and then they had seen at least ten other carvings while wandering on a distance of 60 feet of the beach.
The petroglyphs are presumed to have been the work of aboriginal inhabitants. The US Army and DLNR State Historic Preservation Division started to pay attention to the stone carvings.
Up until now, a total of 17 figures had been discovered. The first official arriving at the place of the discovery was an army archaeologist that explained that the Army deals with other thousand archaeological sites. However, the new location is different because the petroglyphs are on the shoreline.
While some locals and tourists previously reported seeing them before, this would be the first time when the petroglyphs had been officially taken into consideration and recorded by scientists.
Alton Exzabe, the army archaeologists that now is responsible for the site, is also a native Wai’anae. He and other locals said that the petroglyphs had never until now been discovered, even if their homes were at a short distance from the coast and they grew up on that particular beach.
The sandstone carvings contain records of the local religion and genealogy. The experts will try to interpret the drawings by using the aboriginal culture and history.
The officials recommend tourists and locals not to touch the petroglyphs, as they can be easily damaged even by a bush of a touch of the hand.
A preservation plan will be set up around the site. Some of the carvings are considered to be unique, such as the ones with the fingers and hands. In general, the petroglyphs are a foot tall. In comparison, the Wai’anae drawings are 4-5 feet long, which is considered to be impressive.
In the meantime, the sands have already covered up the petroglyphs. The DLNR State Historic Preservation Division and the Army will design a plan to protect them even if they are not continuously visible.
In time, the sands will shift again, and they will be revealed. At that moment, it would be important not to touch them, in order to preserve the aboriginal cultural heritage.
Image Source: Wikipedia