On page 218 of Zena Halpern's new book about her decade-long research about a secret Templar document titled, The Templar Mission to Oak Island and Beyond, there are two mistakes that directly involve me that need to be corrected. Beneath the photograph of what the author calls a "Paleo-Hebrew Carving" she wrote the following, "Geologist Scott Wolter tested the rock at a university laboratory and concluded, based on the weathering, that this carving was at least "many centuries old.""
First, the stone was not examined in a university laboratory, it was examined in my materials forensic laboratory at American Petrographic Services, Inc., in St. Paul Minnesota, in 2006. This error is minor compared to the second error that deals with her reporting of my conclusion. I did not conclude the weathering of the inscription on this stone was "many centuries old" because I was unable to make such a statement based on the results of the analysis I performed. In fact, on page three of my report titled, The Catskill Mountains Inscription, that was published in the Epigraphic Society of Occasional Papers (ESOP), Volume 25, I concluded the following, "It is quite clear that the inscription was carved into fresh rock below the weathered surface and those surfaces have since weathered. That weathering profile appears less developed than the original weathered surface indicating that the inscription is younger. The age of the weathering is unclear. However, it appears that the weathering of the inscription has taken many years to develop."
Let me be clear that the weathering of the inscription could, in fact, be many centuries old. However, without a properly documented provenance of where this stone was discovered and the specific environmental conditions it was exposed to I cannot say with any certainty how old the weathering of carved grooves are.