George Hagopian claimed to have seen Noah's Ark two times, when he was a little boy, around 1900 and 1905. It took Hagopian and his uncle eight days to reach the high grazing areas and glacier of Mt. Ararat, from the city of Van, past Ahora Gorge, passing the grave of St. Jacob on the way. As the mountain grew more precipitous his uncle carried him on his shoulders until they came to something that looked like a great ship located on a rock ledge over a cliff and partially covered by snow. It had flat openings like windows along the top and a hole in the roof. Hagopian had first thought it was a house made of stone but when his uncle showed him the outline of planks and told him it was made of wood he realized it was the Ark, just like the other people had described it to him. His uncle boosted him up from a rock pile to reach the Ark roof telling him not to be afraid, "because it is a holy ship ..." (and) "the animals and people are not here now. They have all gone away." Hagopian climbed on the roof and knelt down and kissed the surface of the roof which was flat and easy to stand on. While they stood alongside the Ark his uncle shot into the side of it but the bullets bounced off as if it were made of stone. He then tried to cut off a piece of the wood with a sharp knife and was equally unsuccessful. On this first visit to the Ark they spent two hours there looking at it and eating some of their provisions. When Hagopian returned to his village eager to tell the other boys about his adventure they replied, rather anticlimactically, "Yes, we saw the Ark too. "Hagopian died in 1972 in US. Since he was unable to read maps with any accuracy he was unable to pinpoint on a map of the mountain where it was that he had seen and climbed on the Ark. He consistently told his interrogators that if he could get back to Mount Ararat he could lead a party to the Ark.
Of particular value which is NOT appreciated generally is mentioned by Hagopian concerning:
- Angle-out sides of the Ark
- Ark resting on a very long ledge
- Ark covered with green moss
- NO OPENING on the side he and his Uncle were on (port side)
- Very precipitous ledge
- Large hole on top of the ship