Stories of giants are littered throughout mythology and folklore. Almost every culture and society has tales of gigantic people who once roamed the Earth. However, over the last 200 years or so, and particularly since the early 20th century, there have been many alleged finds of giant skeletal remains or fossilized footprints, possibly suggesting that the tales of giants are more than pure legend. All of these accounts also carry an air of conspiracy about them, with insinuations of the discoveries being “covered up” and dismissed thereafter.
SEE ALSO: Top 10 Real-Life Giants From History
Are they all hoaxes, or are there more to these stories than we might think? Here are 10 alleged “giant” discoveries.
10 Giant Bones Found At Lake Delavan
According to a report that ran in The New York Times on May 4, 1912, 18 gigantic skeletons, buried in charcoal and baked clay, were found at Lake Delavan in Wisconsin. The discovery was made by the Phillips brothers while excavating a burial mound. They were presumed to be the remains of an unknown race of people who once called the area home.
Although they appeared to be very much human, there were some noticeable differences aside from their much larger size. The bone above the eye socket sloped straight back, and the nose appeared to be much higher than the cheekbones as opposed to being more or less in line with them. The jawbones themselves were described as “bearing a minute resemblance to the head of the monkey!”
These giants apparently weren’t the only ones found in Wisconsin. In 1891, The New York Times also reported that scientists from the Smithsonian Institute had discovered giant remains while investigating burial mounds in the ancient city of Aztalan near Madison, Wisconsin. Six years later in 1897, the Times published another report about the discovery of a 2.7-meter (9 ft) skeleton in nearby Maple Creek.
While all of the reports stated that the findings would be further studied and investigated, there appear to be no published reports or conclusions about them.
9 The Giants Of Death Valley
In 1931, F. Bruce Russell, a former physician from Cincinnati, announced that he had discovered a series of tunnels and caves under California’s Death Valley in the Mojave Desert. With his colleague Daniel S. Bovee, the two men explored the caves extensively. According to the story that Russell told to Howard E. Hill, they found several human skeletons, each around 2.7 meters (9 ft) tall.
Hill told the story at a meeting of the Los Angeles Transportation Club, and the apparent find was reported in The San Diego Union on August 4, 1947. The skeletal remains were apparently mummified, and Bovee stated that he felt their age to be around 80,000 years old.
Within the network of tunnels and caverns, the pair also found what they proposed was the ancient peoples’ “ritual hall,” where they found markings that appeared to be very similar to those used in masonic societies. Hieroglyphics were also said to be found that closely resembled those that have been linked with the lost civilization of Atlantis.
8 Giant Remains Found At Varna
Varna, in modern-day Bulgaria, was once the ancient Greek city of Odessos, an important trading post that dates back around 7,000 years. Odessos’s mythology was particularly rife with giants, so when what appeared to be a giant human skeleton was discovered there in January 2015, it raised quite a few eyebrows for those who have an interest in such things.
The discovery was made by accident. Excavators were digging in the area after they found a jar that appeared to date back to the fifth century. They discovered an unknown fortress wall, and as they continued to dig in order to get to the foundations of the wall, they stumbled upon the amazing find.
The skeleton was found with his hands placed on his waist and his head facing to the east. Excavators and investigators believe that he was placed in that position on purpose, indicating that he was most likely of some importance at the time of his death and burial. Although no actual height was released to the media at the time of the find, one of the excavators referred to the skeleton as “very tall” and “impressive.”
7 Enormous Remains Found In Ecuador
In 1964 in Ecuador, Father Carlos Vaca, a priest who also worked in hospitals, was called upon by the locals to look at some strange bones that had been discovered. What was particularly strange about the bones was their amazing size. Father Vaca took some of the bones from the mountain where they had been found, and they remained in his home until his death.
Austrian artifact researcher Klaus Dona was given permission to take the bones back with him to Austria to be examined and to feature in an exhibition called “Unsolved Mysteries.” Klaus claimed that several experts have examined the bones and that they do appear to be human. From the size of the bones they have (including a complete shin bone), Klaus estimates that the person who they belonged to would have stood 7.6 meters (25 ft) tall!
In an interview with Project Camelot, Dona claimed that he subjected the bones to DNA tests courtesy of an Austrian archaeological DNA specialist and that no strands of DNA could be obtained. This led Dona to conclude that the bones had to be over 10,000 years old at the very least. He also claimed in the same interview that the area where they were first discovered translated as “cemetery of the giants” from the local Ayamara language.
6 Giant Mummies Found In Tunnels Near The Colorado River
According to a report in The Arizona Gazette in April 1909, while rafting on the Colorado River, explorer G.E. Kinkaid made several remarkable discoveries. He claimed to have noticed a tunnel that took him almost 1.6 kilometers (1 mi) under the ground.
He encountered a fortified secured area at the end of the tunnel, in which he found copper weapons and tools, a large statue (which Kinkaid claimed looked similar to Buddha), ancient tablets that were carved with strange hieroglyphics, and perhaps most fascinatingly, several 2.7-meter-tall (9 ft) mummies, all wrapped in dark shrouds.
If his claims weren’t controversial enough, Kinkaid added a little conspiracy fuel to the fire when he stated that the government had purposely sealed and closed off the area so that the public would not be aware of its existence. The Arizona Gazette headline also stated that the finds were an indication that ancient, tall people had migrated to the United States thousands of years ago from Asia.
5 The Mystery Of Lovelock Cave
About 32 kilometers (20 mi) south of Lovelock, Nevada, you will find Lovelock Cave, sometimes referred to as Sunset Guano Cave, Horseshoe Cave, or Indian Cave. The cave is said to be older than known human settlements on the continent, stretching right back to antiquity.
In 1911, two miners, David Hart and James Pugh, who knew about the cave, took an interest in the guano that was present there. They were looking to extract it due to its value at the time as a key ingredient for gunpowder. They quickly set up a company and received permission to begin digging it out, which they immediately began to do. Although they had no intention of searching for anything from ancient times, they soon believed that they’d found exactly that, and they contacted Alfred Kroeber, founder of the University of California’s Anthropology Department.
The first archaeological project in the cave began the following year and was followed by two further digs in 1924 and 1929. Over the course of the excavations, thousands of ancient artifacts were discovered, including around 60 human mummies of average height as well as numerous bones and weapons. They also are said to have found what looked to be sandals that were around 38 centimeters (15 in) long, a giant-sized handprint that appeared to have been embedded into the cave wall, and more mummies—only this time, they appeared to be 2.5 to 3 meters (8–10 ft) tall.
What is interesting, if these finds were indeed true, is that The Paiutes, a Native American tribe that inhabited the area for thousands of years, spoke of a race of red-haired, white-skinned giants whom they referred to as “Si-Te-Cha.” Their home was the recently excavated cave.
4 Giant Human Finger Found In Egypt
In March 2012, photographs of what appeared to be the mummified remains of a giant finger, claimed to have been discovered in Egypt, appeared on various websites and online media outlets. The digit clocked in at 38 centimeters (15 in) long, meaning that if it was proven authentic, the individual it belonged to would have been gigantic.
However, despite the alleged photographic evidence, the finger’s authenticity has yet to be verified, as the person who took the photograph doesn’t have the finger. According to the original story, which appeared on the website of Bild (a German tabloid), the photos were taken in 1988 by Gregor Sporri. He had paid $300 to an unknown man who claimed to belong to a “grave robber dynasty” for the privilege of taking the pictures. The unknown man also presented Sporri with an X-ray and a certificate to prove that it was a human finger, something he had obtained in the 1960s.
Sporri returned to Egypt in 2009 hoping to track down the man he had spoken with, but was he unsuccessful in doing so. At least for now, the huge finger’s whereabouts are unknown.
Interestingly, regarding the existence of giants in ancient Egypt, the Roman scholar Flavius Josephus seemed to believe that they very much existed. In AD 79, he wrote in The History of the Jewish War that, “There were giants. Much larger and shaped differently than normal people. Terrible to behold!”
3 Aleutian Island Discovery
Ivan T. Sanderson was a popular and respected zoologist who regularly appeared on television to disperse his wisdom. One of his strangest tales, however, concerned a letter that he’d received from an engineer working on Shemya in the Aleutian Islands in 1940 during World War II.
The Aleutians sit between Alaska and the easternmost part of Russia and divide the North Pacific and the Bering Sea. The US was using the islands as a base of sorts for the potential (and eventual) conflict with Japan and was in the process of building airstrips when they made a bizarre discovery: As they bulldozed hills to flatten the ground, they came across a graveyard of human skulls and leg bones. They were, however, almost three times as large as a standard adult. The skulls measured between 56 to 61 centimeters (22–24 in) from top to bottom, as opposed to the average of 20 centimeters (8 in).
Sanderson stated that he received a second letter from another member of the unit that confirmed the find and corroborated the first letter. Interestingly, both men stated in their notes that the Smithsonian Institution had “collected” the remains. Sanderson said that not only had the Smithsonian released no data on the find, but they denied that any such relics were had ever been in their possession.
Sanderson asserted that he believed each of the engineers’ claims to be true. He speculated that they “[couldn’t] face rewriting all the textbooks,” given their decision to lock away the discovery.
2 The Giants Of The Caucasus Mountains
In 2014, the TV show The Unexplained Files aired an episode about possible ancient giant civilizations. As part of the episode, they concentrated on the Caucasus Mountains in Georgia.
In 2008, local herdsman had stumbled upon a supposed grave of giants. A group of Georgian researchers soon followed up on the account, speaking to the man who made the discovery as part of their investigation. He informed them that he had come across a stone built crypt, and after gaining entrance to it, he discovered two huge skeletons sitting at a large table.
The researchers ventured into the isolated, mountainous, and densely forested location to see for themselves. They reached the crypt that the man had spoken of, but it had since collapsed. However, under the dirt and rubble, a pile of bones was found. They did indeed appear to be human, aside from the fact that they were much larger.
Samples of the find were investigated by Professor Vekua, a very respected scientist. Hr declared if they were indeed proven to be human bones, then the person they belonged to would have been between 2.5 and 3 meters (8–10 ft) tall. Before any final conclusion could be reached, however, Vekua passed away, and the bones have since been “lost” in the museum they were being held at.
The Unexplained Files crew didn’t recover any further bones, since the crypt appeared to have since completely fallen in. However, they declared that a full excavation of the site should be carried out, which could indeed turn up more of the skeletal remains that the original Georgian researchers found.
1 Giant ‘Footprints’ Found Worldwide
There have been several alleged fossilized giant footprints found throughout the world. Perhaps the most well-known of these is “Goliath’s Footprint” in Mpaluzi, South Africa, a town close to the Swaziland border. The impression is 1.2 meters (4 ft) long and appears to perfectly match a human foot. Although there is debate on exactly how old Goliath’s Footprint is, estimates have ranged anywhere from 200 million to three billion years old.
Other fossilized prints of similar size have also been reported. In 1926, The Oakland Tribune ran a story concerning 1.5-meter (5 ft) footprints on top of a cliff in San Jose, California. The year before, in 1925, an alleged 2.5-meter (8 ft) footprint was discovered near San Jose at the John Bunting ranch.
However, a set of standard-size footprints are perhaps more fascinating in relation to the other, much larger ones. In 1976, anthropologist Mary Leaky reported the discovery of normal-sized fossilized footprints in Tanzania. They looked perfectly human, but their age was estimated to be around 3.6 million years old. This predates—by millions of years—the time frame that mainstream science states modern humans were present on Earth.
If these footprints are genuine, they’d force what we “know” about the history of humanity on Earth to be reevaluated and rewritten, and they’d also beg the question of whether the alleged giant footprints are also genuine. If they were, it would suggest that human beings, at some point in their history, coexisted with so-called giants, just as mythology and legend state they did.