Stonehenge Built With Balls?
New experiment suggests monumental stones could have rolled on rails.
A previous theory suggested that the builders used wooden rollers—carved tree trunks laid side by side on a constructed hard surface. Another imagined huge wooden sleds atop greased wooden rails.
But critics say the rollers' hard pathway would have left telltale gouges in the landscape, which have never been found. And the sled system, while plausible, would have required huge amounts of manpower—hundreds of men at a time to move one of the largest Stonehenge stones, according to a 1997 study.
(Related: "Stonehenge Settlement Found: Builders' Homes, 'Cult Houses.'")
Young first came up with the ball bearings idea when he noticed that carved stone balls were often found near Neolithic stone circles in Aberdeenshire, Scotland (map).
"I measured and weighed