Reveals the existence of a Templar colony in the New World and how the explorer Verrazano, also a member of a secret society, attempted to reestablish contact with it
• Explores Columbus’s connection to Henry Sinclair’s maps of the New World
• Examines the secret alliance of Catholic Sulpicians and French Huguenots to preserve the Templar legacy
• Reveals the hidden knowledge preserved in the Templar baptisteries found throughout Europe and in Newport, Rhode Island
In 1524 the Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazano was sent by the French king Francis I on an expedition ostensibly to find a shorter route to China. However, his true mission, Steven Sora suggests, was to contact a Templar colony that might have been established in Newport, Rhode Island, by Henry Sinclair at the end of the 14th century. In his expedition log Verrazano recorded that his only stay on this journey was at Newport Harbor, the site of a tower built to the exact measurements of a Templar baptistery, a sacred sanctuary representing baptism and eternal life.
This tower is a remnant of Sinclair’s voyage to America nearly a century before that of Columbus (who had access to Sinclair’s maps thanks to his wife, who was Sinclair’s great-granddaughter). While Verrazano’s mission succeeded in finding the tower, the colony itself eluded him. His backers then decided to resurrect the dream of Acadia--a place where they could aspire to higher knowledge without fear of Church or state--by creating a new Secret Society that included Huguenots and Catholic Sulpicians. This Company of the Holy Sacrament would lay the foundations for Montreal in an attempt to realize the ambitions of Sinclair and his Templar companions, as well as to stave off efforts by the Jesuits to transform Quebec into a fiefdom of the orthodox Church. Quebec’s motto, “Je me souviens” (I remember), is a reference to this secret history.
A century before Columbus landed in the New World, Scottish earl and explorer Henry Sinclair had, according to Sora, already visited what is now Rhode Island. In an unconvincing book that is part religious history, part reportage, part detective story but factually questionable Sora (The Lost Treasure of the Knights Templar) claims that Sinclair, who is said to have landed in present-day Nova Scotia, Montreal and Rhode Island, established a refuge for the Knights Templar (banned by the pope in Europe) in America and erected the Newport Tower (whose actual origins are shrouded in mystery), which resembles a Templars' baptistry, the centerpiece of their worship. Almost 200 years later, Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazano set off for America according to Sora, in search of the Templar community and on a later voyage founded a utopian religious community, Arcadia, comprising mainly Huguenots and members of the Sulpician sect in an attempt to preserve the values of the Knights Templar. While fans of The Da Vinci Code may find Sora's book compelling because it provides some insights into these secret organizations, others will find it unpersuasive. Even Sora admits that the evidence he is presenting (such as the age of the map of the route to the New World purported to have belonged to Sinclair) continues to be disputed by historians.