National Geographic : 1960 Jun
bare, and as we drove, we felt on our faces a north wind strong enough to dispel any mist. We made Salisbury about midnight and continued onward another ten miles un til, caught in the car's headlights, the famous Heel Stone loomed from the darkness. Beyond rose the huge monoliths, dimly outlined against the sky. Here we would wait out the night in order to see and photograph the ruins at sunrise. From my earlier visits and from reading in the vast literature that has grown up around Stonehenge, I knew-even though by flash light I could only faintly see-the monument's basic design. To the northeast lies the long grassy Avenue, more easily discerned from the Far fields yielded massive stones. Marlborough Downs sarsens lay 24 miles from Stonehenge. Smaller Welsh blue stones, some weighing four tons, moved 250 miles by land and sea from Pembrokeshire. 0 oo00 STATUTE MILES WALES PEMBROKESHIRE Milford Have Land's End PAINTING BY BRIAN HOPE-TAYLOR() NATIONALGEOGRAPHICSOCIETY Backs Strain, Bare Feet Claw the Ground: a Sarsen Moves to Stonehenge on Rollers Antiquarians believe that as many as 1,500 men could have labored for ten years transporting all the immense stones across Wiltshire. Mr. Hope-Taylor's painting recaptures the slow advance of a 40-ton sarsen on an afternoon 3,400 years ago. Two files of panting haulers bend against the slope of Redhorn Hill, the halfway mark. As the ponderous slab creaks across oak rollers, shuttle teams speed the traversed logs to the front, providing an unending track. Riding the sarsen, a foreman shouts his orders, and a bearded assistant relays a message to the overseer (right), who holds a ceremonial spear, his badge of office. Ahead of the stone, men with staves align the rollers to prevent dangerous drifting. Gangs at rear man steering lines to prevent the stone from skidding off the logs. This feat of transport is not so difficult as it may seem: Groups of schoolboys have used the method to move large concrete blocks. ©N.G.S.