The London Hammer, also called the London Artifact, is a human-made hammer embedded in stone discovered in Texas in the mid-1930s. The appearance of the hammer is similar to 1800s mining equipment, but the first dating results showed the age of 300 million - 500 million years old.
Critics believe there was a possible mistake in dating and that dissolved sediment hardened around a dropped hammer. The hammer is now on exhibit at a creation museum and not available for analysis.
The Discovery Edit
Local hikers, Mr. and Mrs. Max Hahn were hiking along the Red Creek near London, Texas, in June 1934 or 1936. They noticed a piece of wood sticking out from a small, limey rock concretion that originated in a Cretaceous rock formation.
In 1946 or 1947, Max Hahn’s son, George, broke open the nodule finding the working end of a hammer. When first revealed, the iron hammer head was smooth with a brownish coating which has since become rusted and rough. The hammer head is rectangular. One end has concave bevels that form a pattern resembling a plus sign. The other end contains a protrusion in the center. The handle appears to be mostly unmineralized wood, although it shows some small areas of black carbonization at each end. According to the museum display, the hammer is made of 96.6 percent iron, 0.74 percent sulfur, and 2.6 percent chlorine.
Carl E. Baugh Edit
In 1983, creationist Carl E. Baugh bought the hammer. He started calling it the “London Artifact” and traveled around the country and displayed photos of it of examples of how the atmospheric quality of “pre-flood earth” could have encouraged the growth of giants. The hammer is now on exhibit at Baugh’s Creation Evidence Museum in Glen Rose, Texas. The display claims, “This chlorine composition in compound with metallic iron renders this artifact unreproducable by modern scientific methods.”
Critics believe the hammer is actually from some time in the last couple centuries, fell into a dissolved lime-like settlement, and the settlement hardened into a nodule around the hammer. In 1985, John Cole, a researcher at the National Center for Science Education, an organization “defending the teaching of evolution and climate science,” briefly reviewed Baugh’s claims. He said, “the stone is real, and it looks impressive to someone unfamiliar with geological processes...Minerals in solution can harden around an intrusive object dropped in a crack or simply left on the ground if the source rock...is chemically soluble.”
The rock strata at the site are Hansel Sand Member of the Travis Foundation (Lower Cretaceous, Upper Aptian stage) considered approximately 110-115 million years old by conventional geologists. Some reports say the nodule was sitting loose on a ledge near a waterfall when found and thus not part of the rest of the surrounding rock formation where the couple found it. No photos exist supporting or debunking this claim.
- Many accounts report the discovery date as 1936. The Creation Evidence Museum where the hammer is currently on display report the date as 1934.
- Some accounts say the rock formation was from the Ordovician or Silurian eras. The museum exhibit claims it was found in Cretaceous rock.
- Creationist Carl E. Baugh was an advocate of the Paluxy River “Texas Dinosaur” or “Man Tracks” that appeared to show giant man tracks alongside fossilized dinosaur tracks in the limestone riverbeds.
External Links Edit
- Creation Evidence Museum of Texas (Glen Rose, TX)
- London Artifact Exhibit
- Wikipedia: London Hammer
- Rationalwiki: London Hammer
- Kuban, Glen J. “The London Hammer: An Alleged Out-of-Place Artifact”. 2008. <http://paleo.cc/paluxy/hammer.htm>. Website. Accessed: 11 January 2016.