Coral Castle

Coral Castle
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Date: 1920 - 1951

Location: Homestead, FL

Working alone, Edward Leedskalnin labored for 20 years, from 1920 to 1940, to build the home he originally called Rock Gate Park in Florida City. The story goes that he built it after being jilted by his fiancée Agnes Scuffs, who changed her mind about marrying him just one day before the wedding because he was too old and too poor. After wandering around the U.S. and Canada for several years, settled in Florida City for health reasons, allegedly terminal tuberculosis but spontaneously healed, stating that magnets had some effect on his disease.

Coral Castle in Homestead, Florida, is one of the most amazing structures ever built. In terms of accomplishment, it’s been compared to Stonehenge, ancient Greek temples, and even the great pyramids of Egypt. It is amazing, some even say miraculous, because it was quarried, fashioned, transported, and constructed by one man: Edward Leedskalnin, a 5' tall, 100# Latvian immigrant.

He began building his coral home in 1920. Then in 1936, when a planned new subdivision of homes threatened his privacy, Leedskalnin moved his entire home 10 miles to Homestead, where he completed it, and where it still stands as a tourist attraction.

It’s estimated that 1,000 tons of coral rock were used in construction of the walls and towers, and an additional 100 tons of it were carved into furniture and art objects:

An obelisk he raised weighs 28 tons.

The wall surrounding Coral Castle stands 8' tall and consists of large blocks each weighing several tons.

Large stone crescents are perched atop 20' high walls.

A 9 ton swinging gate that moves at the touch of a finger guards the eastern wall.

The largest rock on the property weighs an estimated 35 tons.

Some stones are twice the weight of the largest blocks in the Great Pyramid at Giza.

How Edward managed this feat of engineering has remained a mystery all these years because, incredibly, no one saw him do it. A secretive man, Leedskalnin often worked at night by lantern light. And so there are no credible witnesses to how the small, frail man was able to move the huge blocks of rock. Even when he moved the entire structure to Homestead, neighbors saw the coral blocks being transported on a borrowed truck, but no one seems to know how Leedskalnin got them on and off the vehicle.

Lots of weird stories have been told and bizarre theories proposed to explain Coral Castle. And since no witness can dispute any of them, they are all worthy of consideration.

One story says that some curious neighbors did see how Leedskalnin moved the stones. They say he placed his hands on the stone to be lifted… and sang. Somehow this levitated the great rocks.

According to an article in Fate magazine, some teenagers spying on him one evening claimed they saw him float coral blocks through the air like hydrogen balloons, but no one took them seriously.

The only tool that Leedskalnin spoke of using was a perpetual motion holder.

Frank Joseph, in the Fate magazine article, also writes:

Alternative science investigators suggest that Leedskalnin somehow learned the secret of the world grid, an invisible pattern of energy lines surrounding the Earth which concentrates points of telluric power where they intersect. It was here, at one of these intersections of Earth energy, that he was supposedly able to move his prodigious stone blocks using the unseen power of our planet. Yet that still does no explain how Leedskalnin was able to tap this power, and others cannot.

Coral Castle quotes J. Cathie, a captain flying with National Airways Corp. of New Zealand, as saying:

Measurements from the Coral Castle position to the 0º and 90º longitude lines, when they passed through the equator, also yielded harmonics related to light and gravity. The final check of the distance between Coral Castle and grid pole A in the north, dispelled any doubt about the site being in an ideal position to allow Leedskalnin to erect the huge blocks of coral with relative ease.

Measurements from all major points gave the geometric harmonics necessary for the manipulation of antigravity. Cathie also believes that this energy grid is also responsible for many UFO sightings.

In an article by called The Coral Castle Mystery in Atlantis Rising, author Christopher Dunn asserts:

What if there’s no such thing as gravity? And the natural forces we already know about are sufficient to explain the noted phenomena we have labeled as gravity? Perhaps Leedskalnin’s means of working with the Earth’s gravitational pull was nothing more complicated than devising a means by which the alignment of magnetic elements within his coral blocks was adjusted to face the streams of individual magnets he claims are issuing forth from the Earth with a like repelling pole.

Leedskalnin originally built the castle, which he named Rock Gate Park, in Florida City, FL around 1923. He purchased the land from Ruben Moser, whose wife helped assist him when he had a very bad bout with tuberculosis. Florida City, which borders the Florida Everglades, is the southernmost city in the United States that is not on an island. It was an extremely remote location with very little development at the time.

The castle remained in Florida City until about 1936 when Leedskalnin decided to move and take the castle with him. No one knows for sure why Leedskalnin decided to relocate. The Coral Castle website states that he chose to move in order to protect his privacy when discussion about developing land in the area of the castle started. The second commonly held notion was that he wanted to relocate to a more populous locale after being badly beaten one night by hooligans looking to rob him. He spent three years moving the Coral Castle structures 10 miles north from Florida City to its current location in Homestead, FL.

The highlight of his work though, is a nine ton, 8' tall revolving stone gate set between two segments of the wall with only a quarter inch of clearance on either side. At one time the stone was so precisely balanced on an old truck bearing that it was said a child could spin the gate around with just a finger. When the bearing began to rust and had to be replaced in 1986, it took a team of six men and a 50-ton crane to remove the stone. The gate broke again in 2005, and even with today’s technology, it has never quite worked as smoothly as it had when Leedskalnin built it.

Leedskalnin continued to work on the castle up until his death in 1951. The coral pieces that are part of the newer castle, not among those transported from the original location, were quarried on the property only a few feet away from the southern wall. Leedskalnin charged visitors ten cents a head to tour the castle grounds. There are signs carved into rocks at the front gate to Ring Bell Twice, and a second sign just inside the property reads admission 10¢ Coral Castle Drop Below. He would come down from his living quarters which were the second story of the castle tower and are close to the gate and conduct the tour. Leedskalnin never told anyone that asked him how he made the castle. He would simply answer It's not difficult if you know how. If asked why he had made this castle, he would vaguely answer it was for his Sweet Sixteen.

When Leedskalnin became ill in December 1951, he put a sign on the door of the front gate Going to the Hospital, and took the bus to a Miami hospital. The doctors discovered Leedskalnin was suffering from malnutrition. He passed away in the hospital three days later.

While the property was being investigated, $3,500 was found among Leedskalnin's personal belongings. Leedskalnin had made his income from conducting tours, selling pamphlets about various subjects, including magnetic currents, and the sale of a portion of his ten acre property for the construction of U.S. Route 1. Having no will, the castle became the property of his closest living relative in America, a nephew from Michigan named Harry.

The Coral Castle website reports that the nephew was in poor health and he sold the castle to an Illinois family in 1953. However this story differs from the obituary of a former Coral Castle owner, Julius Levin, a retired jeweler from Chicago, IL. The obituary states Levin had purchased the land from the state of Florida in 1952 and may not have been aware there was even a castle on the land. The new owners changed the name of Rock Gate Park to Coral Castle and turned it into a tourist attraction. In January 1981, Levin sold the castle to the Coral Castle, Inc. for $175,000. They remain the owners today. In 1984, The National Register of Historic Places added Rock Gate, also known as Coral Castle, to its list of historic places.

Billy Idol wrote and recorded the song Sweet Sixteen and filmed the video in the Coral Castle. The song was inspired by the story of Leedskalnin's former love, who was the main reason Leedskalnin built the structure.

When he was personally asked how he managed the feat, Leedskalnin replied only that he understood the laws of weight and leverage. He is quoted as saying:

I have discovered the secrets of the pyramids. I have found out how the Egyptians and the ancient builders in Peru, Yucatan, and Asia, with only primitive tools, raised and set in place blocks of stone weighing many tons.

According the The Enigma of Coral Castle, Ed flatly disagreed with modern science, and claimed that the scientists were wrong, that nature is simple. He believed all matter consisted of individual magnets, and it is the movement of these magnets within materials, and through space, that produce measurable phenomena, magnetism, and electricity. These concepts involved the relationship of the Earth to celestial alignments.

He claimed to see beads of light which he believed to be the physical presence of nature’s magnetism and life force, or what we term today, chi.

Was Leedskalnin being deceptive when he talked about magnetism and electricity, trying to make his accomplishment more mystical and mysterious than it actually was? Had he merely found a very clever way to manipulate the great stones with levers and pulleys? We may never know the answer. Leedskalnin took his secrets with him to his grave in 1951… secrets that await to be rediscovered.

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