Monday, September 21, 2009

Remarkable Remains

Can Demons or Darwin best explain some of the following mysteries which have intrigued for more than a century?

Horned human skulls were discovered in a Bradford County, Pennsylvania burial mound sometime in the 1880's. Aside from the horns, the male skeletons to which these skulls belonged were perfectly normal, albeit rather tall (7 feet) for the average adult of the period. Estimates at the time indicate burial occurred around 1200 CE. Discovered by reputable men, the bones were taken to the American Investigating Museum in Philadelphia, only to vanish thereafter.

In 1837 near Coshocton, Ohio, a number tiny skeletons - only 3 to 4.5 feet long - were found buried in small wooden coffins. The fact that this account finds this remarkable seems to indicated that these were extraordinary in their height, thus precluding the possibility the remains were simply those of children.

Also in Ohio, at the center of a large burial mound, the skeleton of a "massive man" was discovered. His exact dimensions don't seem to be on record, but he has been referred to as a "giant". The body was clad in copper armor: a skull cap, jaw moldings, and plates on the arms, chest, and stomach. His mouth had been stuffed with pearls and he wore a bear tooth necklace also adorned with pearls. Accompanying him in his eternal rest was the body of a woman. No mention of her remarkable stature is made, indicating she may have been of normal height.

Another such giant was found in a burial mound near Brewersville, Indiana in 1879. Adorned with mica and clay jewelry, the body was measured at 9' 8" in extremis. The excavation was undertaken by archaeologists and scientists from Indiana, New York and Ohio. Sadly, the remains vanished in 1937 when a flood swept away a nearby mill where they had been stored.

It would have been nice to have studied these bones in the modern era. Who were these anomalous beings? Were the larger giants, non-Natives, or - more tantalizing - could they have been something inhuman but nonetheless a hominid? One wonders if Sasquatch existed, would its remains be treated as sacred by early mound builders? And what are we to make of horned humans and a cemetery full of tiny skeletons? Genetic anomalies or something far more fantastic?

Before we get too carried away, it should be noted that the convenient lack of existing evidence is a strong indicator of a hoax, as are the nebulous details. We have to remind ourselves that Darwin's "On the Origin of Species" had broken open the floodgates of evolution not long before most of these "discoveries". Evolutionary adherents were desperate to find transitional species which could bolster his theories and, often, their own agendas. It may simply be that these finds represent hoaxes playing upon the world's fascination with Darwin's work.


Buck said...

I must say I'm highly suspect of "remarkable remains" that vanish unexpectedly leaving no chance of serious scientific study. Especially those found during the heyday of the "Cabinet of Curiosities" when freak shows and museums like Barnum's featured outrageous fakes like the famous "Mermaid."

In fact the "museum" mentioned in this story only seems to occur in mentions of these strange skulls. So, I wonder if the "museum" was actually just a cabinet of curiosities dealing in fakery.

If you ever make it to Tucson, we'll take a drive over toward Deming, NM and check out "The THING". :)

Jeremy said...

Where did you get these accounts? They are so me if you get a chance!

Cullan Hudson said...

I almost did "The Thing". We got to that station, but couldn't bring ourselves to pay the admission price. It wasn't THAT much but it was enough that if this "thing" totally sucked, we were gonna be pissed. So, that said, I've still yet to see "The Thing".