As it turns out the modern-day Stonehenge that can be seen in Wiltshire, England is not the result of thousands of years of engineering marvel, but a feat of 20th-century restoration techniques.
Most of what can be seen today only dates back 50 years. Leading Stonehenge author Christopher Chippindale said ‘Not much of what we see at Stonehenge hasn’t been touched in some way’.
It’s surprising how few people know this bit of information. In 1901 restoration process on the monument caused great public outrage.
The man responsible was William Gowland who oversaw the process which included the straightening and setting of stone 56 which ended up half a meter from its original position.
In 1920 William Hawley excavated the base of stone 6 and the outer ditch. Yet again in the 40’s and 50’s Richard Atkinson, Stuart Piggott and John F. S altered most of Hawley’s changes in addition to discovering carved axes and daggers on the sarsen stones.
In 1958, 3 of the standing stones were mounted on a concrete base. The most recent edition to the monument being in 1963 when stone number 23 fell over and needed to be re-erected.
With all that being said, it is impressive to note that a new study done by archaeologists and geologists at University College London indicates that the original stones originated 225 kilometers from the site of Stonehenge.
Also discovered is the possibility that the monument might predate itself by 500 years being built between 3400 and 3200 BC instead of the initially believed 2900 BC date of origin.
Regardless of this discrepancy in dates and ages, Stonehenge continues to be one of the most marveled at and miticides creation of early man.
Inciting thousands of visitors each year, and well over a million visitors to date.