Jeunes Citoyens / Young Citizens

Alexander Ailsa Craig , Ontario

Fair address: Thames Valley Regional Fair

Project: The Money Pit

In 1795, 3 friends found a peculiar looking depression on Oak Island, that was absolutely man-made. Curiosity set in, and they started digging. Could it be the treasure that Captain Kidd claimed to have buried? It wasn't long before they came across further evidence to convince their imaginations. 2 feet below topsoil, they uncovered a layer of flagstones and then logs at 10 feet, 20 feet and 30 feet. As the years went by, they kept on removing one barrier after another to claim their mysterious reward. And So It Begins...

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

I was surprised by the trouble that some treasure hunters would go through and how much money they were willing to invest on something that could be a wild goose chase. Also interesting, is the idea that the Money Pit could be a huge, elaborate decoy. This makes me wonder why the people who set it up years ago went through so much trouble. Could the real treasure actually be hidden elsewhere?

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

Everyone loves a good treasure hunt, like geocaching, or visiting a garage sale or thrift store in hopes of finding some amazing thing. But, sometimes people can get too caught up in the hunt, leaving behind their life savings in hopes of finding unbelievable wealth, and the fame that comes with it. We should learn to keep our hopes realistic, our priorities in order, and be grateful for what we have in the present.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

In my life today, I accept and try to be happy with what I have. I know that people win lotteries, but I remain cautious of "get rich quick" ideas. During the time of the Money Pit discovery, people had less than we do now and they were willing to risk more to help themselves and their families get ahead. Often, that decision cost them nearly everything, sometimes even their own lives.

  • Cathy

    Alex, this is AMAZING!!! Good luck in the competition!!
    06/06/2018 10:43:38 PM

  • Adriana

    Great work, Alexander! We enjoyed watching your presentation and reading what you've learned as a result of your research. I really appreciate your perspective about accepting and being happy with what you have - indeed! All well said!
    06/06/2018 8:03:22 PM

  • Sherry Lynne kirschner

    This is a phenomenal video Alexander. You captured my attention and kept me captivated until the end! You have inspired me to learn more about this! I wonder if it’s a decoy but like you I’m attracted to believe in the possibility of the best treasure hunt ever! Thanks for sharing your expertise so eloquently.
    06/06/2018 7:58:40 PM

  • Kim Christenson

    Alexander, well done video! Very interesting and informative. Now I want to go to the East Coast!! See you this summer!
    06/06/2018 7:52:12 PM

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Project partially funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage.
  • Canadian Heritage / Patrimoine Canadien
  • Government of Canada
  • HBC: Hudson's Bay Company
  • ecentricarts inc.