June 6, 2011; Source: Wisconsin State Journal | If you've ever wanted to help find the lost city of Atlantis but didn't know how to or needed a bit more incentive, Jerry Wells has an opportunity for you. Wells is founder and president of Wells Research Laboratory in Madison, Wisc. The IRS recently granted his group tax-exempt status, which the nonprofit hopes will make it easier to raise money to begin field studies in Algeria, where it believes the mythical city is located.

According to the Wisconsin State Journal, Wells "says he pinpointed a site in northwest Africa that has the same geologic and geographic markings as Plato’s descriptions of Atlantis." Wells told the State Journal, “The match is so close that, statistically, this could be the place.” But first he needs to raise about $250,000 for an initial two-week field survey. Whether Atlantis ever even existed has been the stuff of legend for thousands of years, and Wells, who is self-educated, is among the die-hard who believes it did, and now he thinks he is close to proving the nay-sayers wrong.

The State Journal also notes that Wells, unlike most others who have searched for it, doesn't think it sunk. Instead, he theorizes it vanished due to some kind of cataclysmic event. As he writes on his group's website, “Over the millennia, our remote site on the edge of the Algerian Saharan Atlas steppe has been buried under tens of meters of sand and soil, rendering it virtually invisible until the recent development of thematic mapping satellites."

Beyond the potential thrill of discovery, what motivates Wells and his supporters? As the group states on the home page of its website: "WRL focuses on scientific and historical anomalies around the world in an effort to develop potential solutions that could position humanity for greater advancements in the future. Please help keep WRL’s research alive by making a donation."—Bruce Trachtenberg