Baffin Island Walrus Mandibles and Iron Blooms
By Kirsten Seaver
his paper addresses two riddles arising from the Meta Incognita Project's investigations. One concerns two carefully arranged accumulations of walrus mandibles found on Willows Island; the other centres on several medieval-type iron blooms that appear so closely associated with Frobisher's activities that it is tempting to explain both their origin and their Baffin Island presence within the Frobisher context. However, the Greenland Norse buried an arrangement of walrus mandibles at Gardar, and radio-carbon datings on the blooms suggest that these pre-date the Frobisher expeditions. Recent research on the Greenland Norse indicates they kept crossing the Davis Strait for centuries in search of North American produce, and that the blooms may well have been of Norse manufacture.