In 2008, miners working in a coal mine in the city of Donetsk in Ukraine made a curious discovery. This was the discovery of what looked like an ancient wheel in the mine. As the artifact was firmly embedded in the surrounding sandstone, it couldn’t be cut out from there and was left in its original position as it had been discovered.
According to J. P. Robinson in his book, ‘The Myth of Man’, the miners were drilling in the coking coal mine named ‘J3 Sukhodolsky’ at a depth of 900 meters (2952.76 feet) from the surface when they were surprised to come upon an artifact looking like the imprint of a wheel in the sandstone roof of the tunnel which they had just dug.
The Deputy Chief and foreman of the mine took photographs of the imprint and shared them with the authorities which led to the discovery being brought to the notice of the outside world. Since the site was not explored further, the only proof of the existence of the artifact is only the photos of the same taken by the miners and the statements given by the Ukrainian miners.
Discovery of the wheel
Although it has not been able to date the topography in which the fossilized print of the wheel was found, it was noted that the Rostov region which surrounds Donetsk has a base of the carboniferous rock which is aged between 360 to 300 million years prior. It is thought that the coking coals which are widely distributed in the region have derived from this rock in the late carboniferous era. This would imply that an actual wheel became stuck millions of years ago in the rock and dissolved over time due to a process known as diagenesis in which sediments were lithified into sedimentary rocks, something common in fossilized remains.
According to a letter written by one of the Ukrainian miners who discovered the imprint in 2008, the finding was not done for gaining any publicity and the team of miners and engineers had asked the director of the mine to invite scientists for a detailed study of the artifact, but the director of the mine on the orders of the mine’s owner didn’t allow for these talks to occur and instead ordered the miners to advance through the section of rock and proceed further.
Due to this the wheel artifact and another smaller one found while working ahead was left in a blocked tunnel and could not be taken out and studied further. The miner said that he knew people who had seen the artifact imprint and also photographed it despite the director’s instruction to them not to. There were more than a dozen witnesses but they couldn’t enter again into the mine as admission into it was regulated strictly and even to obtain a permit to enter the mine was difficult.
According to the miner, the wheel was imprinted on the roof of the mine from where his team tried to cut it out and take it to the surface. But the sandstone was so firm that they wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this without damaging it. So, they left it in the mine as it was. The mine was closed in 2009 and thus access to the artifact became impossible. The mining equipment was dismantled and the area which was being mined was flooded.
This written testimony and that of the other witnesses along with the photographs of the imprint are the only proof of its existence. It begs the question that if the photos are the only proof of the imprint, then how did a man-made wheel come to be embedded in such an ancient topography when according to science humans hadn’t even evolved?
Tracks of ancient wheels
These types of artifacts involving ossified ancient wheels have been also found in other countries like France, Spain, Italy, Malta, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, and even North America. One of the more prominent sites in Malta known as ‘Misrah Ghar il-Kbr’ meaning ‘The Great Cave’ in the Maltese language and known as Clapham Junction is located at Siggiewi near the Dingli Cliffs in Malta.
It is at this famous site that so-called ‘cart ruts’ have been found which are cut into the limestone of the area. This has aroused the curiosity of visitors to the area. There are also many tracks visible in the stone on the island of Sicily at the site of the Greek amphitheater known as the ‘Great Theater of Syracuse’. Many archaeologists have stated that the tracks in Malta were made by Sicilian settlers who traveled to Malta in around 2000 BC at the beginning of the Bronze Age.
The tracks have also been found at Sofca in Turkey ranging from 45 by 10 miles (72.42 by 16.09 km). They have also been found in the region of Cappadocia. These discoveries are controversial due to the unknown nature of their purpose, age, and origin. These factors are debated and the proximity of these tracks to megalithic structures in Malta and the fact that many tracks are submerged below the sea has led many researchers to conclude that they belong to the period of antiquity.
In the Crimean Mountains of Ukraine, a medieval city-fortress known as Chufut-Kale lies in ruins but also has many of these tracks as does the nearby site of Eski-Kermen. Dr. Alexander Koltypin, a geologist and the director of the Natural Science Research Center at the International Independent University of Ecology and Politology in Moscow has spent a great deal of time on visits to these sites and comparing them with each other to search for similarities between them. He first saw the fossilized tracks of wheels in central Anatolia in Turkey in May 2014. As per the age analysis of the nearby volcanic rocks, the tracks were around 12-14 million years old and belonged to the middle Miocene period.
This region which has been researched by Dr. Koltypin is mostly unknown and many researchers think that the tracks are from wheeled vehicles pulled by donkeys or camels. But Koltypin does not accept this hypothesis as he believes that they could be from an earlier era that was since destroyed. Koltypin feels that the vehicles responsible for making the tracks were of a similar length as modern cars but must have been much heavier. He also feels that the civilization which made these tracks is the same one that made the tracks in other places which have been found around the Mediterranean Sea more than 12 million years prior.
According to Koltypin, the heavy mineral deposits found in the tracks and the erosion that is visible in the nearby infrastructure show that the tracks are millions of years old. He feels that the sediments are lithified and ossified and covered with thick layers that take millions of years to develop and would have emerged during a period of high seismic activity in the areas.
However much more research is needed to clarify the age and origin of many of the tracks that have been discovered at numerous locations. Further investigations may reveal more complex reasons for the existence of an unknown ancient civilization as theorized by Alexander Koltypin.
The presence of the ossified wheel found in Ukraine shows that the ancient world may have had more access to technological know-how than is accepted at present.