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The Great Cardiff Giant Hoax

  1. May 31, 2005 #1
    The Cardiff Giant

    This is a story that every person who has an interest in unusual phenomena should get to know.

    This version is probably the most comprehensive and well written. It is a chapter from the autobiography of Andrew Dickson White, a minor NY State politician, who saw most of the goings on first hand. He also kept track of the strange follow up that lasted years after the giant was revealed as a hoax.

    His story contains elements that recur in similar stories to this day, most notably the intense and confident assertions that "it couldn't have been hoaxed!"

    "Against the opinion that the figure was a hoax various arguments were used. It was insisted, first, that the farmer had not the ability to devise such a fraud; secondly, that he had not the means to execute it;third, that his family had lived there steadily for many years, and were ready to declare under oath that they had never seen it, and had known nothing of it untill it was accidently discovered; fourth, that the neighbors had never seen or heard of it; fifth, that it was preposterous to suppose that such a mass of stone could have been brought and buried in the place without some one finding it out; sixth, that the grooves and channels worn in it by the surface water proved its vast antiquity."

    Even level headed White was perplexed by the "grooves and channels" which looked to him to be the effects of centuries of erosion by underground flows of water.

    "Another visitor, a bright looking lady, was heard to declare, `Nothing in the world can ever make me believe that he was not once a living being. Why, you can see the veins in his legs.'"

    These veins, as well as the "unhoaxable" skin pores that were visible all over the crude giant's body, convinced many that they were looking upon the petrified remains of one of the giants mentioned in the bible: "There were giants in those days."

    In fact, though, the giant was a deliberate fraud, and the man behind it had gone to considerable trouble to make the giant, transport him there, and arrange to have him discovered. In other words, everything people asserted it could not possibly be, turned out to be true.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 31, 2005 #2


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    Didn't Danger go out with her?
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