Mysteries at the Museum (2010) s12e04 Episode Script

Kensington Runestone

1 A 19th-century heroine on a daring mission If she was recaptured, she wouldn't just be jailed.
She would be lynched.
A dirty disaster under the ocean He simply couldn't work out what was happening.
Was this some kind of invasion attempt? And a terrifying hijacking or an elaborate prank? Everybody was convinced this was a big joke.
[ Screaming ] These are the mysteries at the museum.
Alexandria, Minnesota.
In the heart of this small town is a 28-foot tall statue of a Viking warrior called Big Ole.
Built in 1965, it's a symbol of the city's long-standing Scandinavian heritage.
And just down the road sits an institution that celebrates a more mysterious side of the region's history -- the Runestone Museum.
On display is a replica of a 15th-century Viking trading ship, a high-wheeled bike from the 1930s, and an early 20th century Native American canoe.
But the crowning glory is the artifact that gives this museum its name.
It's 30-inches tall, 15-inches wide.
It's a rectangular shape.
It has mostly a grayish tint.
And you can see various etchings and carvings into its surface.
WILDMAN: This is the Kensington Runestone.
It's tied to a controversy that some believe rewrites American history.
This artifact has fascinated historians and scores of citizens for decades.
WILDMAN: So what is this bizarre relic? And where did it come from? It's 1898 in Minnesota.
The rural village of Kensington is a small proud community of Swedish immigrants.
One day, a local farmer named Olof Ohman makes an announcement that takes everyone by surprise.
He says he's discovered something strange on his property.
It's a massive rock inscribed with illegible carvings.
KRUEGER: This slab of stone looked an awful lot like a tombstone.
And on the surface of the stone was a very fascinating-looking etching.
WILDMAN: Ohman's neighbors are amazed by this find.
But what it is and how it got there is anyone's guess.
KRUEGER: They were curious about the strange markings in the surface of the stone.
WILDMAN: Ohman puts the mysterious rock on display at a local bank.
KRUEGER: There was great fascination among residents.
This certainly would have been the talk of the town.
WILDMAN: A few weeks later, a team made up of historians and linguistic experts arrives to analyze the strange symbols on the rock, and they make a stunning announcement.
They were ancient Scandinavian texts known as runic writing.
WILDMAN: The carvings chronicle a Viking expedition from Scandinavia to the interior of North America.
But the most surprising part of all is that the writing supposedly dates back to the year 1362.
That's more than 100 years before Christopher Columbus discovered America.
This amazing revelation could rewrite the history books.
This was something much bigger than anybody could have imagined at the time.
This could demonstrate the Vikings had visited North America prior to Columbus.
WILDMAN: The ancient relic becomes known as the Kensington Runestone.
But not everyone is convinced that Ohman's discovery is the real deal.
A professor at the University of Minnesota decides to investigate whether the carvings are genuine.
His name is Olaus Breda.
KRUEGER: Olaus Breda had read a wide variety of Scandinavian texts since the 1870s.
And he was open to the possibility that this could be authentic.
WILDMAN: Breda pores over the strange markings.
And then he notices something unusual.
The inscription contains several runes that did not exist when the tablet was said to have been carved.
KRUEGER: There were certain words that he did not believe were actually used during the 14th century.
So Breda was rightly suspicious that this could be an authentic Viking artifact from the medieval period.
WILDMAN: Breda comes to a remarkable conclusion.
He declared the stone to be a forgery.
WILDMAN: Breda publishes his findings.
And as his paper makes the rounds, several prominent scholars back him up.
A theory emerges that Olof Ohman carved the stone himself and buried it on his property.
Then, some time later, he dug it up and pretended it was a genuine medieval artifact in the hopes of selling it for a hefty sum.
KRUEGER: People accused him of being dishonest and a trickster.
WILDMAN: The announcement sparks outrage among the public, who feel they've been hoodwinked.
Ohman, for his part, sells the now worthless stone to the Minnesota Historical Society for $10.
But he goes to his grave insisting the stone is genuine.
Today, no one knows for sure what the origins of the Kensington Runestone are and the debate rages on.
The story that it tells in the inscription is so good that people desperately want to believe it's true.
WILDMAN: Meanwhile, the controversial relic remains on display at the Runestone Museum in Alexandria.
It sits at the center of an allegedly ancient mystery that refuses to be buried.
Miami, Florida.
This teeming metropolis boasts stunning views of picturesque beaches and a towering skyline, which draw in over 14 million visitors a year.
And one of the city's premier tourist attractions is the Wings Over Miami Air Museum.
Occupying a hangar at the Miami Executive Airport, the museum is home to a military training plane from World War II, a civilian recreational aircraft built in the 1970s, and an F-14 Tomcat fighter jet.
But among these hulking behemoths is one very small item.
GEORGE: It's about a foot in length and maybe about 8 inches wide.
It's got "Fly Eastern" emblazoned across it, and a small American flag graces its side.
WILDMAN: This is a model of a 1960s Eastern Airlines Boeing 727.
It recalls a bizarre sky-high incident that left passengers reeling in terror.
Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction.
WILDMAN: It's February 3rd, 1969.
Eastern Airlines Flight 7 takes off from Newark Airport in New Jersey, bound for Miami.
On board are 93 passengers.
Most people were gonna go off on a trip just to relax.
WILDMAN: But their dream getaway is about to become a nightmare.
Shortly into the flight, there's a sudden commotion at the back of the plane.
GEORGE: There was a Cuban with a knife to the throat of one of the flight attendants.
And he was walkin' her to the cockpit.
WILDMAN: The passengers are terrified.
They think that this is a hijacking.
People were scared.
This was, literally, every traveler's worst nightmare.
WILDMAN: Moments later, the captain announces over the intercom that the plane is being diverted to Havana, Cuba.
But then the frightening ordeal takes a bizarre turn.
One of the passengers spots a celebrity sitting among them.
It's Allen Funt, the host of a popular TV show "Candid Camera.
" GEORGE: Allen Funt was very famous in America.
He was one of the most prominent TV personalities of the 1960s.
WILDMAN: "Candid Camera" is known for putting unsuspecting members of the public into artificially created dramatic situations, and then filming the outcome using hidden cameras.
Then, at the climactic moment, Funt steps in to let the victim in on the prank, and he does it with a memorable catchphrase.
Allen Funt came up with the wonderful buzzwords, "Smile, you're on 'Candid Camera.
'" And people just loved to see those reactions.
WILDMAN: Seeing the master practical joker on the flight leads the sharp-eyed passenger to believe that the hijacking is actually a hoax.
GEORGE: The passenger blurted out, "There's Allen Funt.
This must be another episode of 'Candid Camera.
'" WILDMAN: When the rest of the passengers hear that Funt is on the plane, a wave of relief washes over the cabin.
GEORGE: I think many other people just let out yelps of glee like, "Oh, it's Funt.
Thank God.
You know, we're gonna be okay after all.
" WILDMAN: Suddenly, in the middle of the commotion, the cockpit door opens, and the supposed hijacker sticks his head out.
People applaud it.
Everybody was convinced this was a big joke.
They thought the hijacker was an actor.
WILDMAN: So are the passengers pawns in a televised prank? Or are their lives really in peril? It's 1969.
A passenger plane en route from Newark, New Jersey, to Miami, Florida, has just been hijacked.
But when Allen Funt, the host of the popular TV prank show "Candid Camera" is spotted on board, the passengers conclude that it's all just an elaborate practical joke.
So is this really a high-flying hoax? Allen Funt watches in disbelief as the passengers continue to applaud.
Other than the hijacker, he's the only person on board who knows this is no joke.
Allen Funt was horrified.
He's thinking, "This is a hijacking.
This is not one of my shows.
" WILDMAN: Funt fears that if the raucous passengers don't settle down, someone might be killed.
Then, to the TV host's relief, the hijacker shuts the cockpit door and locks himself inside.
Funt uses the opportunity to let his fellow passengers in on the truth.
He says, "Folks, this is the real thing.
" WILDMAN: But despite his pleas, the passengers continue to believe that they're the targets of one of "Candid Camera's" made-for-TV pranks.
So Funt realizes it might be better for the passengers' mental state, and their chances of getting out of this alive, if he lets them believe it.
For the passengers, ignorance was bliss.
WILDMAN: For the rest of the flight, the passengers laugh and smile, all the while thinking they're going to be on TV.
Two hours after the journey began, the plane lands in Havana.
Cuban military officials storm the cabin.
This was the moment the majority of the people on that plane realized this was not a practical joke, that this wasn't part of Allen Funt's "Candid Camera.
" WILDMAN: The hijacker is taken into custody, and the passengers, including Funt, are put back on a plane to Miami.
The passengers are just incredibly relieved that nobody was hurt in the end.
WILDMAN: Today, this model of the B27 airplane hijacked that day in 1969 is on display at the Wings Over Miami Air Museum.
It recalls the real-life, high-flying episode that was no laughing matter.
A jacket worn by a black pilot during World War II, a 19th-century religious statue, and a 1960s jukebox filled with hits by African-American artists are just a few of the 5,000 artifacts on display at the Meek-Eaton Black Archives in Tallahassee, Florida.
But among these relics of pride is one item that, at first glance, seems threatening.
REDDICK: It's about a foot long and 4-inches wide.
It's made out of wood and metallic material.
Looks like it's been used on a battlefield or in hunting.
WILDMAN: This pistol was used by an unlikely hero who orchestrated one of the greatest covert operations the nation has ever seen.
She was one of the most indomitable women of African-American history.
WILDMAN: How did one brave woman risk everything for freedom? It's 1863 in South Carolina.
After two years of brutal Civil War, the Union is struggling to defeat the Confederacy.
To stand a chance of victory, the North urgently needs to recruit more soldiers.
The North is really looking to do something that makes an imprint on their efforts against the South.
WILDMAN: Charged with this mission is General David Hunter.
And he thinks he has a way to bolster his army.
From his camp along the Combahee River south of Charleston, General Hunter will raid the region's many plantations, liberate the slaves, and turn them into soldiers.
This was an opportunity for former slaves to be participants in the war effort.
WILDMAN: But Hunter has a challenge.
The Confederates have fortified the Combahee River with a network of lethal mines, and the General has no idea where they're located.
If he can't find and disable these explosives, he won't be able to free slaves and recruit them for his army.
But help is about to arrive from an unlikely source.
One day, the General is approached at his camp by 43-year-old abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
Harriet Tubman was intelligent, extremely determined, and very much dedicated to the freedom of slaves.
WILDMAN: Tubman has aided countless people to escape bondage via the Underground Railroad.
Now, she has heard about the plan to free slaves and enlist them as Union soldiers, and she wants to help the General.
REDDICK: Harriet Tubman has seen the joys of freedom.
She felt she could bring the same liberty to fellow enslaved people in South Carolina.
WILDMAN: She informs Hunter that explosives were placed by slaves under orders from Confederate military officials.
If she can track down the slaves who planted them, Tubman is confident that they'll tell her exactly where the mines are.
She could make real relationships with other escaped slaves for information.
These are people that would know the waterways, would know the best points to access landing positions along the plantation areas.
WILDMAN: Hunter is impressed by Tubman and agrees to let her help.
But the operation will be dangerous.
If she was recaptured, she wouldn't just be jailed.
She would be lynched.
This was extremely risky, but Harriet Tubman was determined to succeed.
WILDMAN: In April, Harriet Tubman sets off on her mission.
She moves covertly through enemy territory seeking out slaves who might have inside knowledge.
So will Harriet succeed in locating the deadly mines? It's 1863, South Carolina.
Union spy Harriet Tubman is on a perilous mission to raid the plantations among the Combahee River, free the slaves, and recruit them to join the U.
But there's a problem -- the riverbank is riddled with lethal mines.
So can Harriet succeed in locating the hidden explosives? Realizing she could be spotted at any moment by Confederate soldiers, Tubman makes her way through the woods.
Finally, she tracks down the slaves who planted the mines along the Combahee River.
They tell her where the explosives are located.
On June 2nd, General Hunter sends Tubman and a group of Union soldiers on the raid.
Harriet Tubman is about to embark on a raid that might be the most significant of her life.
WILDMAN: Under the cover of darkness, Tubman and the troops head up the Combahee River.
I sense they were all feeling exhilarated on whether it would succeed or not.
WILDMAN: When they come to the first section of mines, they carefully disable them and move onto the next.
Then the soldiers sneak onto area plantations and set them on fire.
In the chaos, hundreds of slaves rush to the shores to be rescued and are taken in by Union troops.
And when the numbers are counted, it's clear that the raid has been a resounding success.
Over 700 were liberated in this single effort.
WILDMAN: Many of the freed slaves join the Union army, giving the North the advantage it needs.
Tubman's role in the mission is still celebrated today, as she is widely considered to be the first American woman to lead a military expedition for the United States.
Today, Tubman's pistol, which she owned at the time of the South Carolina raid, is on display at the Meek-Eaton Black Archives.
It recalls the heroic woman who went undercover in the fight for freedom.
Located on the coast of Northwestern England is the thriving city of Liverpool.
It rose to international fame in the 1960s when it produced one of the world's most celebrated bands, The Beatles.
But one institution preserves a much-darker side of the area's history -- the U-Boat Story Museum.
It displays an array of items recovered from the wreckage of a German submarine, including a World War II cipher machine, a 1940s German life raft, and a Nazi anti-aircraft gun that could fire 480 rounds a minute.
But among these well-preserved artifacts is one that looks like it's seen better days.
LEVINE: It's 11 inches by 8 inches.
It's made of metal.
It's got writing in German on it that appear to be instructions of some kind.
And it's very heavily rusted around the edges.
WILDMAN: This sign recalls a strange event on the high seas that revealed the filthy side of war.
This story features a sudden and rather unique wartime explosion.
WILDMAN: It's spring, 1945.
The end of the second world war is in sight.
Allied forces are sweeping across the European continent, pushing back the Nazis at every turn.
But in Britain, many fear that their country is still dangerously exposed and that Hitler could launch a last desperate attack on their shores.
As a result, the British military is on high alert.
LEVINE: They were taking enormous care to patrol the coastlines.
They couldn't be sure that they wouldn't be attacked.
WILDMAN: And on April 14th, near the city of Peterhead, Scotland, it seems these fears are realized.
A soldier at the local naval base spots a German U-boat surfacing just a few miles off shore.
The patrolman is stunned at how close the sub is to the coastline.
He simply couldn't work out what was happening.
Was this the precursor to some kind of invasion attempt? Was it some kind of decoy? WILDMAN: When the lookout reports the sighting to his superiors, the base commander orders an immediate airstrike.
The U-boat is crippled.
37 German sailors abandon ship and make it to the shore where they are arrested.
The U-boat's captain, 27-year-old Karl Schlitt, is taken in for questioning.
The interrogators wanted to know why this U-boat surfaced.
This landing attempt was so obvious, it was so brazen, there was obviously something very strange going on here.
WILDMAN: The tale Schlitt tells is one of the most extraordinary and embarrassing stories in the history of naval warfare.
Captain Schlitt insisted that he and his men hadn't been part of a scouting party.
They hadn't been part of some invasion attempt.
The interrogator heard a story that he had never heard before, and he was never likely to hear again.
It's April 1945, Scotland.
Allied forces have just intercepted a German U-boat that's come dangerously near to the Scottish coastline.
But when the sub's captain, a man named Karl Schlitt, is interrogated, the reason he gives for straying into enemy waters is truly bizarre.
So what strange truth is about to come to the surface? Captain Schlitt tells his interrogator that he was in charge one of the German navy's most advanced U-boats.
It was outfitted with the very latest in weaponry, a high-tech navigation system and even a state of the art lavatory.
The Germans had engineered a new toilet system for use on submarines.
WILDMAN: Toilets in traditional submarines had one major flaw.
Sailors couldn't flush while the sub was deep under water.
Immense external water pressure made it impossible to expel waste without seawater pouring into the boat and sinking it.
Water would flood in.
And that would be disaster for that submarine.
WILDMAN: So in order to flush, subs needed to go to the surface.
Schlitt's U-boat, however, was outfitted with a new system that made it possible to flush the toilet while deep below the sea.
The new flushing system was operated using a complex series of valves and levers.
And to ensure that the complicated mechanism worked correctly, trained flushers were assigned to each new submarine.
These were members of the crew who had actually been trained how to use this toilet.
WILDMAN: To aid the flushers, each toilet came with a set of instructions, like this one now on display at the U-boat Story Museum in Liverpool.
Captain Schlitt goes on to explain that on the day he and his men were captured, he had felt the call of nature.
But being the captain, he was convinced he could operate the new toilet on his own, without the assistance of a flusher.
LEVINE: He had faith in himself.
He knew better.
Captain Schlitt could get rid of the effluent on his own but with disastrous consequences.
WILDMAN: It seems that Schlitt pulled the wrong lever.
And to his horror, the toilet began to overflow.
The captain was unable to stop the surge.
Water poured onto batteries stored directly beneath the bathroom, causing a chemical reaction that released clouds of deadly chlorine gas.
LEVINE: That was unbelievably dangerous.
So it was absolutely imperative that Schlitt got the submarine up to the surface or all of the crew members would have died of chlorine poisoning.
WILDMAN: Schlitt surfaced about 8 miles from the Scottish coast.
But before his crew could clean up the mess and go back underwater, the U-boat was spotted and attacked by the British.
After Captain Schlitt finishes his explanation, the interrogator is in disbelief and more than a little amused.
Captain Schlitt's story was so unlikely that it would be retold for a long time to come.
For years, people have wondered whether Schlitt's elaborate story was a cover-up and if the Captain deliberately scuttled his submarine in order to surrender.
His vessel has never been salvaged.
So the truth behind Schlitt's tale remains at the bottom of the ocean.
But historians have verified one detail of the captain's account.
There was a new toilet system on late-model German submarines that could have caused the vessel to flood.
The tiniest of acts can lead to huge consequences.
And it's very likely that Captain Schlitt spent the rest of his life hugely regretting his tiny act.
WILDMAN: And this rusty plaque on display at the U-boat Story Museum in Liverpool recalls the moment when an enemy sub's chance for success went swirling down the drain.
New York City boast such iconic sights as the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, and Times Square.
And it's also home to one of the largest and most treasured cultural establishments in the world -- The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
This dazzling institution has more than 45 acres of gallery space and maintains over 2 million artifacts in its permanent collection, including a golden statue of the Roman goddess Diana, a Buddhist sculpture from ancient China, and a 2,000-year-old Egyptian temple.
But one of the most amazing artifacts on display recalls not a deity, but a king.
ANISHANSLIN: It stands 73-inches high.
Created out of steel, copper alloy, leather and gold, this piece weighs an impressive 62 pounds and 12 ounces.
WILDMAN: This suit of armor once belonged to one of the most infamous rulers in history.
And it could shed new light on the reason behind his notorious reputation.
This steel suit could hold the secret to a king's spiral into tyranny.
WILDMAN: It's the early 1540s in England.
Sitting on the throne is one of the most powerful monarchs in Europe, King Henry VIII.
Driven by ruthless ambition, he has conquered Ireland, denounced the Catholic church, and beheaded two of his six wives.
But despite his unassailable position as monarch, loyal members of his court report something unsettling.
The king appears to be deeply unhappy.
He was depressed.
Henry did have a history of erratic behavior, but his decisions became increasingly impulsive and rash.
WILDMAN: Henry's bad temper and instability seemed to be compounded by his poor physical health.
He gained a tremendous amount of weight in a very short period of time.
His waist size when from around 33 inches to 50 inches.
He suffered from sleeplessness, massive headaches.
He was just fairly miserable, physically speaking.
WILDMAN: As the years pass, Henry's behavior only gets worse.
His demeanor descends from regal authority to mindless violence.
Even his most trusted advisors are unable to escape his wrath.
ANISHANSLIN: He was known for his erratic rages.
He was feared as someone who could turn on you within an instant.
WILDMAN: In 1546, the situation reaches a climax.
The erratic king turns on yet another victim -- his sixth wife, Catherine Parr.
In a fit of rage, he condemns her to death.
But just before her planned arrest, he does a complete 180.
The king suddenly announces he's overturning Catherine's sentence.
He assured her of his love and devotion and respect.
WILDMAN: Most surprisingly, Henry claims he cannot recall ever having given the execution order.
Members of his court are bewildered.
The question that was on everyone's mind was, what was in Henry's mind? Was he confused? Had he forgiven her? Or had he forgotten that he had sentenced her to death in the first place? WILDMAN: Rumors soon begin to swirl that the king is suffering from a mysterious ailment.
There was something truly wrong.
It's 1546 in England.
King Henry VIII is the most powerful ruler in all of Europe.
But the monarch is beset by personal problems.
He suffers from crushing headaches, acute memory loss, and violent outbursts.
So what's really wrong with this troubled tyrant? In January 1547, the wild king passes away.
In the wake of his death, speculation grows as to the cause of his erratic behavior.
Some think he was suffering from syphilis, which could account for his unpredictable outbursts.
Others believe his mood swings were caused by the pain brought on by severe gout.
Whatever the explanation, King Henry VIII's disturbed mental state becomes the monarch's defining characteristic.
He comes down in history as one of England's most capricious rulers.
WILDMAN: But then in 2016, 500 years after King Henry's death, a neurologist at Yale University lifts the lid on the true cause of Henry's malady.
His name is Dr.
Arash Salardini.
Salardini was interested in uncovering what could explain King Henry VIII's erratic behavior, from a medical perspective.
WILDMAN: He digs into King Henry's history.
And what he finds is astounding.
The doctor reads that Henry had a tremendous passion for one particular sport -- jousting.
ANISHANSLIN: Jousting was knights wearing armor who would gallop on horseback with their long lances pointed towards one another and try to knock each other off of their horses.
WILDMAN: According to historical accounts, Henry suffered a series of injuries throughout his jousting career, but by far, the most significant incident took place in January of 1536.
ANISHANSLIN: He was knocked off his horse.
And the horse actually fell on him.
He was subsequently unconscious for two hours.
And everyone around him was fearful that he was, in fact, dying.
WILDMAN: Although the king recovered, reports from the time suggests that after the injury, he was never the same.
The evidence leads Dr.
Salardini to what he believes is the most likely explanation for Henry's unpredictable behavior.
Salardini believed that Henry VIII suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, something commonly associated today with NFL football players.
WILDMAN: The degenerative brain condition occurs in people who suffer repeated head injuries.
And the doctor believes Henry's symptoms were clear signs that he had the condition.
For the last decade of his life, the king could have been battling the side effects of CTE, which can include insomnia, migraine headaches, depression, erratic behavior, and memory loss.
WILDMAN: This diagnosis raises the question of whether a jousting accident was responsible for changing the course of European history.
Today, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, this suit of armor worn by England's most infamous king is on display.
It recalls the tyrannical ruler and the grievous injuries that may have put him on the path to madness.
A restored Roman Catholic chapel dating to 1667, a recreation of a Yoacomaco Indian hamlet, and the plantation house once owned by a governor can all be found at an interactive museum in Lexington Park, Maryland, known as Historic St.
Mary's City.
But among these large structures is a small item that has no place on dry land.
The artifact is about 16-feet long, about 15-feet wide.
It's wood.
And it weighs about 1 ton.
It's meant to float and has the special characteristics of being able to move into shallow waters.
WILDMAN: This simple vessel recalls a world-famous explorer whose final voyage remains shrouded in mystery.
This is a story of willfulness, the power of nature, and fear.
WILDMAN: It is October, 1611, in London, England.
And a crowd has gathered at the docks to celebrate the impending return of England's most famous mariner, Captain Henry Hudson.
Henry Hudson is one of the most extraordinary explorers of the 17th century.
He was very well known.
And he had successfully returned from three explorations.
WILDMAN: For four years, Hudson's been searching for a western route connected Europe to Asia dubbed the northwest passage.
Now the people are eager to learn if he has succeeded.
There is that expectation that people are gonna hear about this mission to find the northwest passage.
This was an exciting moment.
WILDMAN: But when Hudson's ship, the "Discovery," pulls up at the dock, the assembled throng are met with tragic news.
Henry Hudson is missing.
The crowd was shocked to see that only five survivors were returning to London, and Hudson was not present.
Where was Henry Hudson? WILDMAN: The surviving sailors claim that Hudson had navigated the "Discovery" into a bay north of Newfoundland in search of the Northwest Passage.
But after months at sea, they found nothing.
Despite this, the steadfast captain refused to give up.
Hudson could not let go of his obsession.
The crew begins to doubt Hudson's plan.
WILDMAN: As winter set in, the situation took a turn for the worse.
Plunging temperatures cause the ship to become trapped in ice.
They actually were frozen in from November until June, living together in close quarters with burgeoning and festering disagreements over their fate.
WILDMAN: As a result, Hudson was forced to ration the limited supplies of food.
When the food supply begins to dwindle, you have a really potentially explosive situation.
WILDMAN: The sailors claim that tensions soon came to a head.
One day, they discovered that Hudson was hiding a cache of food and was secretly sharing it with a cadre of his favorite crew members.
On June 22nd, the agitation, anger exploded.
WILDMAN: Furious, the crew mutinied.
They seized the captain, forced him and his supporters into a tiny boat, like the one on display at Historic Saint Mary City, and cast them adrift in the bay.
The remaining crew then made the slow journey back to England.
But upon hearing this tale, the London authority's suspicions are raised.
And when they conduct a full search of the ship, they make a chilling discovery.
The investigators found a pool of blood.
WILDMAN: The explorer may not have been put in a boat to fend for himself, but rather suffered a more violent fate.
The theory was that the blood that they discovered was Hudson's blood and that the crew had murdered him.
WILDMAN: On the basis of this evidence, the surviving crew members are arrested and charged with murder.
At trial, they are unable to explain the grisly evidence but insist they did not kill the captain.
And with no other proof, the crew is found not guilty of murder and the case is closed.
That left us with a dark cloud hanging over all of the history of this expedition.
WILDMAN: So was Henry Hudson really killed by his crew? It's 1611.
A ship captained by the famed explorer Henry Hudson has just docked in London.
But there's a problem -- Hudson himself is missing.
The crew claims that he was set adrift during a mutiny.
But a pool of blood found on the ship suggests a different story.
So what has happened to this vanished voyager? For centuries, Hudson's fate is unknown.
But almost 350 years after his disappearance, a chance discovery sheds new light on the beguiling mystery.
A highway worker in Ontario, Canada, is doing maintenance work on a remote country road when he notices a strange carving on a mossy boulder.
It reads, "HH 1612 captive.
" Historians believe the initials HH and the year 1612, just one year after the mutiny on the "Discovery," means that Henry Hudson may not have been murdered after all.
That led to a great deal of speculation about, had Hudson survived? WILDMAN: Some think that Hudson made it to shore and was captured by the region's indigenous people.
PANETTA: The idea of his being captive of the Inuits seemed credible because we knew they were in the area.
There had been encounters with them.
And Hudson thought of himself as a person who was able to communicate with them.
And possibly, he survived.
This boulder really gave credibility to that argument.
WILDMAN: To this day, the final moments of England's famous explorer remain a subject of intense debate.
The ultimate fate of Henry Hudson is a question that will remain open and still really intrigues us and engages our imaginations.
WILDMAN: And at Historic St.
Mary's City is a replica of the 17th-century vessel on Hudson's final voyage.
It serves as a reminder of a legendary explorer and his fateful journey into the unknown.
From a Civil War spy to a tyrannical king, a practical joker to historic hoax, I'm Don Wildman, and these are the mysteries at the museum.