Archive for July, 2010

The Ancient, Global, Griffin Solution; Cultural Diffusion, Paleontological Confusion, Or Living Creature Profusion? Ancient American Mound Builder “Griffin”–Identical to 500 B.C. Persian and 7th Century Greek Griffin

Crypto, Dinosaurs in Literature,, Science, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 26 2010

By Chris Parker, Copyright 2010

Top Photo: Moundbuilder “Griffin” with Persepolis stone griffin, Persia 5th century B.C. Click for Higher Resolution photo

No doubt some are beginning to grow weary of the creature show we’ve been featuring here lately but in terms of the various topics that we cover, we mostly take them as they come. Lately I’ve beem poring over old books about the ancient Americans known as the Mound Builders and have come across some very interesting material-including some recent material on American creatures of the past.

This short article is about one of the most interesting items I’ve come across in some time.

Dragons have appeared in the art of virtually all cultures on all continents since the beginning of time. A subset of the dragon is the griffin (or gryphon). The griffin has appeared in the arts of ancient cultures in Asia, Persia, Greece, Rome to name a few spanning time and place from the 15th century versions in the palace at Knossos to Medieval times in Europe.

In each of these places and times, the features of the creature have been remarkably similar; long ears or sometimes horns, a prominent curved “beak” and wings.

Wikipedia gives this report:

The griffin, griffon, or gryphon (Latin: gryphus) is a legendary creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. As the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts and the eagle was the king of the birds, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. Griffins are normally known for guarding treasure and well valued priceless possession.

One classical folklorist propounds the griffin was an ancient misconception derived from fossilized remains of the Protoceratops found in conjunction with gold mining in the Altai mountains of Scythica, in present day southeastern Kazakhstan. In antiquity it was a symbol of divine power and a guardian of the divine.

Most statues have talons, although in some older illustrations it has a lion’s forelimbs; it generally has a lion’s hindquarters. Its eagle’s head is conventionally given prominent ears; these are sometimes described as the lion’s ears, but are often elongated (more like a horse’s), and are sometimes feathered. The earliest depiction of griffins are the 15th century BC frescoes in the Throne Room of the Bronze Age Palace of Knossos, as restored by Sir Arthur Evans.

It continued being a favored decorative theme in Archaic and Classical Greek art. In Central Asia the griffin appears about a thousand years after Bronze Age Crete, in the 5th-4th century BC, probably originating from the Achaemenid Persian Empire. The Achaemenids considered the griffin “a protector from evil, witchcraft and secret slander”. The modern generalist calls it the lion-griffin, as for example, Robin Lane Fox, in Alexander the Great, 1973:31 and notes p. 506, who remarks a lion-griffin attacking a stag in a pebble mosaic Dartmouth College expedition at Pella, perhaps as an emblem of the kingdom of Macedon or a personal one of Alexander’s successor Antipater.

Infrequently, a griffin is portrayed without wings,”

Why are Griffin Depictions So Consistent?

Naturally, science considers “griffins” to be mythological. It should be noted that the griffin down through history has been reported on as a living creature. In fact, the griffin doesn’t to a lot of mythological work; it kills dogs and sheep and pigs and attacks the occasional human but has no magic powers and eats what it kills.

Photo: Moundbuilder “Griffin”. Click for Higher Resolution photo.

A puzzling problem for science and for the “mythological hypothesis” is the consistency of their depictions in virtually all cultures. As Wikipedia briefly noted in the quote above, Folklorist Adrienne Mayor in her book “The First Fossil Hunters Paleontology in Greek and Roman Times”, postulated that the griffin was indeed mythological but that its features were derived from the ancient’s mistaken identification of certain dinosaur bones;

“According to Greek legend, the ferocious griffin was a medium-sized creature, half lion and half eagle, who protected vast quantities of gold in the Atlai Mountains of the Gobi Desert. Various classical scholars, ancient historians, art experts, historians of science, archaeologists, and zoologists had insisted that the griffin was an imaginary creature, a symbol created by the ancient Greeks to represent vigilance, greed, or the difficulties of mining gold. But, Mayor suspected differently.

Mayor writes that the griffin was no simple composite; that it didn’t seem to belong with other ‘obviously imaginary’ hybrids of Greek tradition like Pegasus (a horse with wings), the Minotaur (a man with a bull’s head), or the Sphinx (a winged lion with a woman’s head). Unlike these creatures, the griffin did not play a role in Greek mythology, but instead was a creature of folklore, grounded in naturalistic details.

Plus, the descriptions of these griffins seemed to remain constant over many centuries. These facts led Mayor to believe that the myth of the griffin may have been based in paleontological legend.”
……The First Fossil Hunters, By Adrienne Mayor, Review by Steve Brusatte

Photo: Mayor’s “griffin hypothesis”. Click for Higher Resolution photo.

Mayor specifically identifies the fossils of protoceratops, a “beaked” horned dinosaur as the inspiration behind the griffin. The beak of the protoceratops she is convinced is the model for the griffin” beak”, which has been portrayed consistently through many cultures from 500 B.C. through the middle ages-and even in modern eyewitness accounts.

The protoceratops of course, had no wings. If Mayor’s theory, (which has been widely held and is now cited as fact) is correct, how does a protocertops skull and bones discovered in various times and locations throughout the world always result in a long eared, winged creature?

Mound Builder Culture Griffin from Ohio Turns Many Theories on Their Heads

“Mound Builders, in North American archaeology, is a name given to those people who built mounds in a large area from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico and from the Mississippi River to the Appalachian Mts. The greatest concentrations of mounds are found in the Mississippi and Ohio valleys. The term “Mound Builders” arose when the origin of the monuments was considered mysterious, most European Americans assuming that the Native Americans were too uncivilized for this accomplishment.

Photo: Left; Apollo and Griffon, 380 B.C., Greek. Right; Arimaspe and Gryphon, Pompeii. 200 B.C. Click for Higher Resolution photo.

In 1894, Cyrus Thompson of the Smithsonian Institution concluded that the Mound Builders were in fact the Native Americans. Clarence Moore, who excavated numerous mound sites in the South between 1892–1916, believed the southern Mound Builders were heavily influenced by the Mesoamerican civilizations, an idea now generally discounted.

Archaeological research indicates the mounds of North America were built over a long period of time by very different types of societies, ranging from mobile hunter-gatherers to sedentary farmers. The prehistoric mounds had a wide variety of forms and fulfilled a range of functions. Many served as burial mounds, individual or collective funerary monuments. Others were temple mounds, platforms for religious structures. Burial mounds were especially common during the Middle Woodland period (c.100 B.C.–A.D. 400), while temple mounds predominated during the Mississippian period (after A.D. 1000).” …

On page 280 of the book:”The Mound Builders: Their works and relics”, 2nd Edition, By Stephen Denison Peet published 1n 1903 is a drawing of a “bird pipe from Ohio”, which is virtually identical to the “classical” griffins of Persia, Greece, Rome and Medieval Europe. The elongated ears are there. The curved beak is there. The large eyes and the wings are there. The wings are special. The wings are not the wings of a bird; they are more closely aligned to the wings of a bat. The piece is featured here in this article in close comparison with many archaic griffin depictions and has been sculpted in a very natural style like the hundreds of other Moundbuilder bird and animal pipes that have been discovered.

Photo: Terminal with a Griffin Head, Scythian culture. 7th century BC
Click for Higher Resolution photo.

Clearly the same creature somehow here depicted in ancient America is the same creature that has been depicted among other times and places from the 15th century B.C. at the Palace at Knossos, and in ancient Persia, Greece and Rome in the 7th century and down through the medieval period in Europe!

Squier and Davis, too famous archaeologists who specialized in Mound Builder artifacts had identified the artifact in question an owl and others had continued to identify it as a bird even though it looked nothing like other bird pipes from Ohio–or elsewhere.

In the book; “Animal Carvings from Mounds of the Mississippi Valley, Second Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution”, 1880-81, by Henry W. Henshaw, he says regarding the “owl”:

“The erroneous identification of the manatee, the toucan, and of several other animals having been pointed out, it may be well to glance at certain others of the sculptured animal forms, the identification of which by Squier and Davis has passed without dispute, with a view to determining how far the accuracy of these authors in this particular line is to be trusted, and how successful they have been in interpreting the much lauded “fidelity to nature” of the mound sculptures.

Fig. 20 (the “owl”) (Squier and Davis, Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley, p. 225, Fig. 123) represents a tube of steatite, upon which is carved, as is stated, “in high relief this figure of an owl, attached with its back to the tube.” This carving, the authors state, is “remarkably bold and spirited, and represents the bird with its claws contracted and drawn up, and head and beak elevated as if in an attitude of defense and defiance.”

This carving differs markedly from any of the avian sculptures, and probably was not intended to represent a bird at all. The absence of feather etchings and the peculiar shape of the wing are especially noticeable. It more nearly resembles, if it can be said to resemble anything, a bat, with the features very much distorted”.

Discussion re the “bird pipe” and similar artifacts from the book: The Mound Builders: Their works and Relics:

“Now, the record which is contained in the earthworks and relics is never so reliable as that which comes from the art of writing; but if the study of relics or earthworks is of any value to science or history, we ought to gain from it information in reference to the succession of tribes and the periods of occupation, and separate them from one another. We maintain, however, that this work of interpretation has been hindered more than helped, by the various attempts to identify the Mound-Builders with the Indians, for the term “Indian” conveys the idea that they were all contemporaneous and on a common level; whereas the other term ” Mound Builder,” conveys the idea of great antiquity and suggests the thought that there may have been a succession of tribes during the moundbuilding period.

The social status ot the Indians is supposed to be the same among all the tribes, and on this account it would be very difficult to draw a distinction between them were it not for their language and physical appearance; whereas there was a great contrast among the Mound-Builders in their social status, their art products, their mythological systems, their religious symbols and ceremonies, and all that went to make up their inner and outer life.

Photo: Left to Right; Terminal with a Griffin Head, Scynthian, 7th century B.C.; Moundbuilder griffin; Apollo and griffon, 380 B.C.; Arimaspe and Gryphon, Pompeii, 380 B.C.. Click for Higher Resolution photo.

We think generally of the Indian as a hunter and a savage, but we think of the Mound-Builder as having some degree of civilization, and this impression is increased by th.e study of the relics, especially those in the Ohio Valley. Relics have here been discovered which have so modern a look that there is doubt whether they belong to the historic or prehistoric period, but there are other relics which have such an air of antiquity about them, that there is no doubt whatever but that they belonged to prehistoric times; and, what is more, there is difference enough between them to prove that they belonged to a succession of tribes, and not to one tribe of MoundBuilders.

To illustrate: the relics which were discovered just before the Centennial Exposition in Chicago, and which came from the Hopewell group ot mounds, have such a modern look about them that their antiquity has been doubted by many, and yet it is difficult to identify them as belonging to any known tribe, or to absolutely prove that they were affected by the touch of the white man. On the other hand, the relies which were discovered by Squier & Davis nearly fifty years before, have been acknowledged by all to have belonged to the MoundBuilders’ period. A few have thought that even these, especially the carved pipes, were too good to belong to any prehistoric people.

These relics, however, have been subjected to close scrutiny, both in this country and in England, where they are at present, and the universal belief is that they belonged to the MoundBuilders, and prove that the art of the Mound-Builders was higher than that of the ordinary Indians. These relics are distinguished for their highly-polished and delicately-carved pipes, some of which have been called monitor pipes, from their resemblance to the monitors.

These carved pipes have been discussed many times. Some have claimed that they were close imitations of the birds and animals which were peculiar to the region; but others contain the figures of birds, such as the toucans, which are only found in Mexico, and of animals, such as the manitus, which were only found in the Gulf States. At the same time there were obsidian arrowheads from the Rocky Mountains, mica sheets from North Carolina, copper from the ancient mines of Lake Superior, pearls from the seacoast, shells from various distant regions, as well as specimens ot cloth and many other articles, all of which reveal a high stage of imitative art; but there were no patterns which could be recognized as belonging to a historic country. The difference between the relics exhumed by Squier & Davis and those discovered by Mr. Moorehead is just this: in the latter we discover patterns and symbols which are known to be common in Europe and are not uncommon in America.

The mica sheets seem to have been cut into patterns by sharp instruments. The spool ornaments seem to have been melted in a mold. The copper axes were hammered into shape by a process different from that common among the Indians.

The conventionality of the symbols and patterns, and the size and number of copper axes, and the peculiar form of the pipes, throw a shade of doubt upon their being of prehistoric origin; and yet they were all discovered in the same locality, and some of them in the same group of mounds as those which have been pronounced by all as a purely prehistoric group. The majority of these relics were placed beside the forms of Indian chiefs, and seem to have been buried as though they were their personal possessions.

This may be said in favor of their prehistoric origin: that the same kind of material was used in these relics which have such a modern look, as was common in all the buried relics of the region—sheets of mica, copper axes, copper spools, pearls, shell beads, obsidian knives and arrow-heads, brown hematite—and many of them were placed upon altars similar to those discovered by Squier & Davis over fifty years ago.

What are “Griffins” in Actuality?: Arimaspe and Gryphon, Pompeii

“This fresco comes from the Villa of Mysteries in Pompeii and was reconstructed from fragments. It shows a battle between a gryphon, a legendary beast with the head, talons and wings of an eagle and the body of a lion, and a hooded figure, trying to protect himself from the gryphon claws with his leather shield.
It dates from about 120 years before the eruption which destroyed Pompeii in AD79” …

Photo: Pompeii griffin and long tailed pterosaur. Click for Higher Resolution photo.

This “griffin” appears in this fresco as a natural creature. As Mayor noted in her book, there is nothing particularly “mythological” about how the griffin appears in ancient art and history. The narrow wings, the long tail (possible tail vane). This is one of many ancient works of art which depict specific, unexplained knowledge of pterosaur features. Our Moundbuilder griffin may closely match the heads of ancient griffins but what about the “lion body” etc? Remember that pterosaurs were thought to have been able to walk both as bipeds and quadrupeds.

Possibly the most telling feature are the “hands” which show three grasping fingers, which is precisely correct (pterosaurs have four, one of which is elongated and is hidden inside the wing) and unprecedented elsewhere among wing creatures. The hands are precisely in the correct location as well—they appear to be on the wing.

Graphic: Rhamphorhynchoid Pterosaur sketch by Cornelio Meyer; Link of a “dragon” that lived in a cave in Rome in 1691

The wings are depicted as feathered; what we know about pterosaur wings is that they were not as bat-like as they are frequently depicted by modern illustrators but that they were “hybrid” wings with “feather-like actinofibrils” on the underside for stiffness. The form of this griffin follows Cornelio Meyer’s 1691 drawing of an alleged living fossil rather than the bat-like depictions of today.

This Pompeii “griffin” is recognizable as a cousin to the creature sculpted by the ancient American Moundbuilders–and it also unquestionably a pterosaur…..

See Also Tracking the Ancient Griffin, Modern Monsters and the “Extinct” Pterosaur Through Art, History and Science

Lose Christianity or Face Expulsion

Church of Darwin, Fin De Siecle, Religious, Uncategorized | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 25 2010

Photo:Jen Keeton

By Bob Unruh
© 2010 WorldNetDaily

A lawsuit against Augusta State University in Georgia alleges school officials essentially gave a graduate student in counseling the choice of giving up her Christian beliefs or being expelled from the graduate program.

School officials Mary Jane Anderson-Wiley, Paulette Schenck and Richard Deaner demanded student Jen Keeton, 24, go through a “remediation” program after she asserted homosexuality is a behavioral choice, not a “state of being” as a professor said, according to the complaint.

Also named as defendants in the case that developed in May and June are other administrators and the university system’s board of regents.

The remediation program was to include “sensitivity training” on homosexual issues, additional outside study on literature promoting homosexuality and the plan that she attend a “gay pride parade” and report on it.

The lawsuit, filed by attorneys working with the Alliance Defense Fund, asserted the school cannot violate the Constitution by demanding that a person’s beliefs be changed.

University “faculty have promised to expel Miss Keeton from the graduate Counselor Education program, not because of poor academic showing or demonstrated deficiencies in clinical performance, but simply because she has communicated both inside and outside the classroom that she holds to Christian ethical convictions on matters of human sexuality and gender identity,” the law firm explained.

School spokeswoman Kathy Schose today declined to address the allegations in the case but agreed to discuss the counselor teaching program in general.

She cited the American Counseling Association’s code of ethics and said students would be required to adopt its provisions.

“There is a code of ethics that govern counselors,” she said. “They have to abide by the code of the profession.”

Ethics codes generally govern behavior, and Schose denied the school was attempting to alter any student’s beliefs or moral values.

But the lawsuit specifically charges the faculty members targeted Keeton’s biblically based belief system and values, not her behavior regarding the treatment of any clients, which had not yet happened.

“Schenck told Miss Keeton that it was unethical for her to believe that her convictions should also be shared by other persons. … Schenck explained that while Miss Keeton was free to have points of view about how she personally should conduct and define herself, she may not believe that others should adopt the standards she personally is convinced are true,” the lawsuit said.

“Anderson-Wiley confirmed that Miss Keeton will not be able to successfully complete the remediation plan and thus complete the (Augusta State University) counseling program unless she commits to affirming the propriety of gay and lesbian relationships if such an opportunity arises in her future professional efforts,” it continued.

ADF Senior Counsel David French contended a public university student “shouldn’t be threatened with expulsion for being a Christian and refusing to publicly renounce her faith, but that’s exactly what’s happening here.”

“Simply put, the university is imposing thought reform,” he said. “Abandoning one’s own religious beliefs should not be a precondition at a public university for obtaining a degree. This type of leftist zero-tolerance policy is in place at far too many universities, and it must stop. Jennifer’s only crime was to have the beliefs that she does.”

Keeton’s own e-mail response to the faculty members who allegedly were pressuring her to adopt a pro-homosexual belief system defines the dispute.

“At times you said that I must alter my beliefs because they are unethical. … Other times you said that I can keep my beliefs so long as they are only personal and I don’t believe that anyone else should believe like me. But that is just another way of saying that I must alter my beliefs, because my beliefs are about absolute truth. … In order to finish the counseling program you are requiring me to alter my objective beliefs and also to commit now that if I ever may have a client who wants me to affirm their decision to have an abortion or engage in gay, lesbian or transgender behavior, I will do that. I can’t alter my biblical beliefs, and I will not affirm the morality of those behaviors in a counseling situation,” she wrote.

Faculty members had demanded she “attend at least three workshops … which emphasize … diversity training sensitive toward working with GLBTQ populations.” They also wanted her to “develop” her knowledge of homosexuality by reading 10 articles and increasing her exposure to homosexuals and lesbians by attending “the Gay Pride Parade.”

According to the complaint documentation, which also seeks a preliminary injunction in the case, Keeton asked Anderson-Wiley how her Christian convictions are any less acceptable than those of a Buddhist or Muslim student. Anderson-Wiley responded, “Christians see this population as sinners.”

The complaint alleges Anderson-Wiley specifically told Keeton she was being asked to alter some of her beliefs. The “remediation” program included a statement that Keeton would be dismissed from the program if she chose not to comply, the lawsuit said.

“Unless and until defendant’s unconstitutional speech-regulating policies and threatened … actions against Miss Keeton are enjoined, Miss Keeton will suffer and continue to suffer irreparable injury to her constitutional rights,” the lawsuit said.

Among the alleged violations of the First and Fourteenth Amendments are viewpoint discrimination, compelled speech, equal protection and freedom of speech, it said.

“By conditioning Miss Keeton’s continued enrollment in the (Augusta State University) school counselor master’s degree program on her waiver of rights to speech and free exercise of religion … by requiring that she alter her beliefs and speech, and that she … commit to affirm in a hypothetical future context the ethical propriety of transgender and homosexual identification and behavior by others, as well as other values and behaviors she now disapproves, and which violate her religion convictions, defendants have imposed an unconstitutional condition on Miss Keeton,” the complaint alleges.

“The First Amendment never permits the government to penalize beliefs in this manner,” the complaint said.

The ADF said it also is litigating a case involving a Georgia counselor fired by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention because she would not agree to affirm homosexual behavior. While an earlier similar case at Missouri State has been resolved, there is another in which Eastern Michigan University is defendant on similar allegations.

In the Missouri State case, a social-work professor, Frank Kauffman, eventually was placed on leave as part of a settlement of the lawsuit brought on behalf of student Emily Brooker. The student had refused his assignment to lobby on behalf of homosexual adoptions because it violated her religious beliefs. She then was brought up on ethics charges in the school.

The settlement also included monetary damages and the removal of the charges against her from her record. The school’s own commissioned conclusion in the case found “many students and faculty stated a fear of voicing differing opinions. … In fact, ‘bullying’ was used by both students and faculty to characterize specific faculty.”

In the still-pending case involving Eastern Michigan, lawmakers there considered calling top school officials on the carpet after they expelled from a counseling program a Christian student who refused to argue in support of the homosexual lifestyle.

As WND reported, trouble began for master’s program student Julea Ward when she refused to accept a client whose issue concerned a homosexual relationship.

The school expelled her from the counseling program March 12, 2009, for refusing to abrogate her own personal religious beliefs and support the homosexual lifestyle.

Since then, Ward has brought a lawsuit through the Alliance Defense Fund Center for Academic Freedom.

Members of the Michigan Senate shortly later approved legislation that includes a provision calling on university counseling programs to evaluate and affirm how they can accommodate the religious beliefs of students.

State Rep. Tom McMillin told WND at the time the case was “extremely alarming,” and there was growing support for an effort to penalize universities that don’t accommodate religious beliefs.

“This is a state-taxpayer-supported university,” he said. “She’s got a court case. Hopefully that will be resolved.”

In the case, the judge refused to dismiss the complaint, determining there were “genuine issues of material fact” about the school’s “true motivations” for dismissing Ward from the program. Further, the judge concluded, the student’s actions to avoid in advance a counseling session for which she had reservations probably followed professional ethical guidelines.


Chalcedony Park: The Petrified Forest of Arizona-News From the Past

Science, The Flood of Noah, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 23 2010

“Wood can be petrified in a matter of days or weeks given the right chemical “coctail’. Although the exact recipe is patented by Hamilton Hicks of Greenwhich, Connecticut, the mix includes materials commonly found in areas of volcanic activity. Mineral rich waters containing calcium, magnesium, and manganese as well as some type of acid produce a bath that penetrates the wood and petrifies it.

At the Department of Energy lab wood has been petrified by using an acid bath, followed by soaking in silica then being dried in an argon-filled furnace. In Queensland, Australia there have been numberous examples of fence posts, axe-chopped wood, etc with known dates in the early 1900′s being buried then when later uncovered discovered to be petrified.

It would appear that contrary to the common thinking on the subject of petrification the process does not take millions of years but rather a particular set of circumstances including acids, minerals, and hot and/or dry conditions. This explains how the wood grain is so perfectly preserved in the petrification process. If the process took millions of years the wood would have long since deteriorated and therefore the material which replaced it would not have the look and grain of wood.”

You can still find many discussions of the process of petrification requiring millions of years. In fact, in a circular way, petrification has been used to support the idea of millions of years old earth because if petrification takes millions of years anything petrified must be millions of years old.

There are some mysteries here; how old is this vast petrified forest really? Even more interesting perhaps; what collosal calamity was responsible for its creation. Also, why does the place look like a mining camp with regular cut pieces of now petrified timber?…

Chalcedony ParkH. C. Houeu Scientific American, 1892

Rich as is the far west of our country in natural wonders, it possesses nothing more remarkable in its way than the strange freak of nature popularly called “the petrified forest,” found in Apache County, Arizona.

This name is applied to a marvelous deposit of silicified remains of what was once a vast forest, which may now be traced by its fossilized relics over an area of a thousand acres. The primeval forest itself, of which these stony remains formed a part, of course, was far more extensive, covering according to one estimate, “hundreds of square miles;” but the causes which acted to cast down, bury and mineralize those which have been well preserved, exerted their influence apparently on only the limited area where they are found.

The existence of this extensive deposit of silicified trees in all stages of preservation, from complete trunks a hundred or more feet in length, to innumerable sections of all sizes, was first made known some twenty years ago by the accidental find of a miner who was prospecting in that region. Since the publication in the scientific journals and popular magazines of accounts of its wonderful character, the deposits have attracted great numbers of visitors, being situated along the line of the Santa Fe railway, from which the tourist may readily make the journey and return to the railway station on the same day.

The manner of the occurrence of the silicified deposit is said to be absolutely bewildering. Dr. H. C. Hovey, a capable scientific observer and most entertaining writer, who has written much the best popular account of the deposit, gave the following graphic description of the impression the scene made upon him, in a lecture recently delivered before the Franklin Institute:

“How shall the Chalcedony Park be described? At first one gets the impression that it is a small affair, of perhaps fifty acres. Then he says that it must be a hundred. And after riding over its amazing ruins for many hours in succession he concludes that the area includes a thousand acres; and finally he hardly questions the bold estimate of C. F. Loomis, that the extensive forest now hardened into stone formerly covered ‘hundreds of square miles,’ and accepts without dissent the assertion of G. F. Kunz, that there may here be seen at a glance a million tons of precious stones.

A matter of fact visitor might say that the scene reminded him of a vast logging camp, where the lumbermen had tossed the huge logs from their sleds at random, and then had gone away, leaving them to become rain-soaked and moss-grown. The trees, when standing, were fully 200 feet high, for even now their prostrate trunks measure, when unbroken, from 100 to 150 feet.

The peculiarity already hinted at is that these mighty trunks are as regularly severed into sections as if the work had been done by a cross-cut saw. The lengths vary from disks like cart wheels to logs twenty or thirty feet long or longer. Twigs are found an inch through, and trunks ten feet thick. They lie at every angle, parallel to each other, and at right angles; singly and in great groups; down in gulleys, and perched like cannon on hill-tops.

“And all these myriad of trunks, stumps, logs, branches and tiny twigs are solid stone. And on inspection they prove to be precious gems of almost every known variety. Those that remain intact have been weathered to a dark red, rich brown or a sober black. But time’s relentless axe, aided by the geologist’s hammer, has made havoc with so many of them that the ground is thickly strewn with their fragments from rocks like boulders down to chips and minute splinters, that show- their brilliant colors under the fierce Arizona sun with kaleidoscopic effect.

At every footfall you tread on gems, some of which might grace a ducal coronet, while the most plain and least attractive would be worthy of an honored place in the finest cabinet. There are no rubies, sapphires nor diamonds here (as has been incorrectly reported), but the amethyst abounds, and the red and yellow jasper, chalcedony of every hue, the topaz, the onyx, the carnelian, and every imaginable variety of agate.

No log, nor fragment is limited to a single kind of gem. Many are massive mosaics of all the kinds named above. The material breaks pretty easily into cubical forms, but it is extremely hard, and takes a brilliant and durable polish.

“Under a magnifying glass the cellular structure is plainly visible, and experts state that the ancient forest was made up of trees analogous to our pines and cedars. The region is decidedly volcanic, lava beds and extinct craters being in sight in every direction.

Some catastrophe doubtless felled the ‘forest primeval,’ which was subsequently buried in volcanic action. Floods of hot siliceous waters were poured over the ashes, possibly from geysers. The pure silica, as Mr. Kunz suggests, would form the limpid quartz, while the rich colors of red, brown, yellow and purple would be due to iron and manganese held in solution.

I found one block of wood that had changed to solid iron.

“Spurring my horse from the valley to the summit of the mesa, mainly formed of light gray sandstone, I followed a trail to its further side, where it is cut by a small canon about fifty feet deep. And here is the Agate Bridge, the most wonderful object of its kind in existence. This unique bridge is simply a huge trunk spanning the canon where it is sixty feet wide.

The trunk itself is a hundred feet long, and tapers down from a thickness of five feet to diameter of three feet. Its entire mass is made up of agates, jaspers and other precious materials. At a point two-thirds of the way across it is fractured, whether naturally or by violence I could not determine. At the bottom of the canyon is a pool resorted to by the cattle of the plains and around it grow the only living trees to be seen for miles.”

This charming pen-picture will give the reader a vivid and truthful impression of this wonderful deposit which excites the unbounded enthusiasm of every intelligent visitor.

The late World’s Fair at Chicago for the first time afforded the public an adequate idea of the beauty and diversity of this fossilized wood. In the Arizona Building, and more extensively in the Manufacturers’ Building, were remarkable exhibits of the material. In the Manufacturers’ Building, the Drake Company of St. Paul. Minn., made a superb display of the material sawn into slabs and polished, to form table tops and other pieces of furniture. The beauty of these polished agate surfaces cannot be adequately described, and they naturally attracted the admiring attention of thousands.

The Drake Company, which has made a special business of preparing the silicified wood for decorative purposes, has erected costly machinery for sawing, shaping and polishing the material at Sioux Falls in South Dakota. There is nothing in the whole range of nature’s mineral productions that exceeds these superb specimens in beauty, if, indeed, there is anything capable of being adapted for similar purposes that can compare with it.

Extensive as the deposit is, it contains comparatively little material sufficiently perfect to be adapted for the production of large and flawless slabs, and the comparatively limited supply, to which should be added the cost of working the material on account of its extreme hardness, must always render it a costly luxury, but one which must enhance in value with years from its growing rarity, its practical indestructibility and surpassing beauty.

The task of selecting specimens from a million tons of gems is less easy than it is agreeable. Each crystal, or moss agate, or amethyst, or onyx, seems most desirable till it lies in your pocket or saddle-pouch, and then others assert their superiority. At last my load was as heavy as could be managed on horseback.

With reluctance I left the enchanted forest, made my way back to Hanna’s ranch, crossed the perilous arroya, flagged an approaching train, gained permission to take my sackful of treasures on board, and sped on my journey, convinced that whatever marvels may have existed in the days of the Arabian Nights’ entertainments, none in these more modern times could rival, in its way, the petrified forest of Arizona.”

Note To Counterfeiter’s of “Ancient Indian Relics”..Don’t Shape Them Like Sauropod Dinosaurs!

Crypto, Dinosaurs in Literature,, Science, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 17 2010

Photo:Counterfeit Relics? Click for Higher Resolution

Note to counterfeiters indeed!

If one is going to create a market for ancient “Indian” relics (back in the mid-late 1800′s and early 1900′s) by cleverly making the artifacts in question, one must be smart enough Not to make them in the shape of a creature that those “Indians” could never have either seen or imagined (according to Darwinist’s).

That would be like counterfeiting $1 million dollar bills or Cleveland Indian World Series tickets today.

Clearly counterfeit bears, fish, horses or buffalo would have been better received, particularly by the scientifically literate. When one realizes that a counterfeiter of those times would have to take the needed time to shape and polish stones into various shapes, then artificially ‘age’ them and then after all that work to sell them for .50., 75 or $1.50 each it hardly makes sense.

Photo:Counterfeit Relics? Click for Higher Resolution

That kind of criminal enterprise would seem to be its own punishment. In fact, if one was convicted of such a crime in those days, a sentence of forced labor making animal shapes from stones would no doubt be both ironic and appropriate.

But then, to be unsmart enough to carve them into the shape of a dinosaur?….The third piece appears to be a side view of a sauropod with a neck frill of some kind…like maybe Miragaia, but dude seriously!

The American Archaeologist Magazine of 1898; for Scientist and Student-A Monthly Journal Devoted to Archaeology and Ethnology was having none of it and editorialized strongly against the counterfeiters.

The Magazine noted:

“We have commenced in this number of The Archaeologist to give our opinion of relic counterfeiters in language that cannot be misconstrued; and we will continue the crusade against the scoundrels until their swindling is suppressed. Let us hear from our readers now”._-Editor

Photo:Counterfeit Relics?
Click for Higher Resolution

We must assume that their readers were also against counterfeiting “Indian relics”.

The editorial pulled no punches, naming the Robinette family of Hancock County Tennessee as one of the chief malefactors although they carefully noted that they also did a brisk trade in genuine “Indian” artifacts.
Clearly, the relics that appeared with the editorial arguably in the shape of prehistoric animals were in the class “fakes” and the very items which could have confused the public.

One of the Robinette family’s chief competitors chimed in and amazingly enough agreed wholeheartedly with the American Anthropologist in the matter. They also perhaps unwittingly identified the primary issue with respect to the ‘fake” relics in question:

A very honorable and reliable dealer in curios, in Ohio, writes us, under recent date, as follows:” I have in my possession one of J.T. Overstreet pipes which I can send you for examination if you wish. It is the best counterfeit pipe I have yet seen, and is well calculated to deceive anyone.

Don’t fail to show up these pipe fraud fiends, for I consider some of their pipes far more dangerous to our business and Your Science than the flint crooks.”.

From this time and distance we cannot comment as to the “fakeness” if any of the artifacts in question. No doubt, counterfeiting these artifacts was a serious problem. But where did these “counterfeiting fiends” get the idea to create fake artifacts in the shape of a sauropod?

A Pair of Classic Sea or Lake Monsters from the Ancient American Mound Builder Culture?

Crypto, Dinosaurs in Literature,, Sophistication of Ancestors, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 15 2010

Photo:These pieces are showcased in the book: “The antiquities of Tennessee and the adjacent states, and the State of Civilization Represented by Them”, written by Gates Phillips Thruston and published in 1890

The author’s descripton of the pieces follows below after a brief description of the Mound Builder cultures so that we can try to pinpoint the time period in which science currently believes these various cultures thrived in the Americas. More specifically, these pieces are from a Stone Grave culture (literally from the graves) which some experts group with the Mound Builders and some do not.

Various types of Lake Monsters have long been described by various “Native American” cultures (several hundred years in the literature) and it appears that they may have appeared in the art of ancient cultures even prior to that of the “Native Americans”…

But what do you think?…

Mound Builder Cultures

Photo:These pieces are showcased in the book: “The antiquities of Tennessee; One monster to another? Mound builder monster vs Memre. Click for Higher Resolution.

“The group of cultures collectively called Mound Builders were prehistoric inhabitants of North America who constructed various styles of earthen mounds for burial, residential and ceremonial purposes. These included the Pre-Columbian cultures of the Archaic period; Woodland period (Adena and Hopewell cultures); and Mississippian period; dating from roughly 3000 BCE to the 16th century CE, and living in regions of the Great Lakes, the Ohio River valley, and the Mississippi River valley and its tributaries.

As a comparison, beginning with the construction of Watson Brake about 3500 BCE in present-day Louisiana, indigenous peoples started building earthwork mounds in North America nearly 1000 years before the pyramids were constructed in Egypt.

Since the 19th century, the prevailing scholarly consensus has been that the mounds were constructed by Indigenous peoples of the Americas, early cultures distinctly separate from the historical Native American tribes extant at the time of European colonization of North America.

The historical Native Americans were generally not knowledgeable about the civilizations that produced the mounds. Research and study of these cultures and peoples has been based on archaeology and anthropology”….Wikipedia

Author’s Description of the Objects in Plate VIII

Photo:These pieces are showcased in the book: “The antiquities of Tennessee; Comparison of mound builder artifact with “classic” sea monster. Click for Higher Resolution.

“A number of fine types of pottery are illustrated in Plate VIII (one-fourth natural diameters). All are from the cemeteries of Middle Tennessee, excepting the dark polished jar, ornamented with the scroll pattern, which is from Mississippi, as its appearance indicates.

The three legged jug was recently obtained from a stone grave in a mound on the George P. Allen farm, about six miles southwest of Clarksville, Tennessee. The handsome ” idol pipe,” of serpentine, illustrated in the next chapter, was found in an adjoining grave.

Photo:These pieces are showcased in the book: “The antiquities of Tennessee; Mound builder (Stone Grave) self portraits. Click for Higher Resolution.

The jug is ornamented with well-painted circles, but they have faded, and were very indistinct in the photograph. The light colored ”water jug,” with the elaborate head-dress, is from a grave in the Byser farm cemetery, on White’s creek, near Xashville. Many fine objects have been obtained from this ancient settlement.

The other vessels in Plate VIII are from the Noel cemetery. They are all fine pieces of ware, especially the bowl-shaped vessels. The little cup with the excellent face has a hole in the pointed cap, for hanging. We have had separate engravings made of the finely executed medallion bowl, to show its grace and
exactness. Vessels with rude medallion faces have been found in the mounds of Arkansas,* but not of this form, or so artistically modeled.

The Mississippi jar and the light ” water jug ” with the label on it belong to the fine collection of the Tennessee Historical Society, at Nashville. The lower bowl with the medallion faces is from Mr. Otto Giers’s collection. The remaining seven pieces are from the author’s collection.” ….The Antiquities of Tennessee…

Alaska; The Frozen Home of Prehistoric Creatures That Never Existed?

Crypto, Dinosaurs in Literature,, Science, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
Jul 11 2010

Photo:This is a news photo of a carcass found near Glacier Island Alaska in 1930. Click for Higher Resolution Version


The Cherbourg Carcass was the name given to an unknown creature found on a beach at Querqueville, France, on February 28, 1934.

After a thorough examination of a photograph of the Cherbourg carcass by Dr. William K. Gregory, curator-in-chief of living and extinct fishes at the American Museum of Natural History, he opined:

“There ain’t no such animal”.


This would tend to be the pronouncement about a number of “prehistoric; dinosaur-looking” carcasses discovered in Alaska over the years—as well as at least two dinosaur looking creatures who were reported to be very much still alive.

Penchant for Whale Identification by Scientists of “Giant Lizard-Looking Creatures”

According to Wikipedia, the Blue whale can reach up to 33 metres (108 ft) in length and 180 metric tons (200 short tons) or more in weight. In volume, it is the largest animal existing or known to have existed.

If that is true, one would think that the discovery of a dead creature on an Alaskan beach who exceeded those dimensions would have created quite a bit of excitement among scientists. It didn’t appear to do so and like many of these discoveries, by the time science gets around to examining the creature (if ever) valuable evidence has been lost.

This particular carcass had washed up on a beach near Juneau Alaska in 1956 and was said the have measured 15 feet across and to be “conservatively” exceed more than 100 feet in length. It was then as large or larger than a blue whale and it had 6 inch teeth. Blue whales do not have teeth.

In a number of cases, such as in the Juneau discovery, medical doctors or scientists made observations about the creatures that precluded the usual final determination of whale or basking shark. Hair for instance. Whales are mammals– which have hair but few if any whale species is covered with hair-or has hair in more than just a few small areas–particularly as adults.

The point is, sight unseen most of these carcasses are labeled as whales or basking sharks—sight unseen. That is the bias even when the carcasses look like reptiles or have features that make a whale or shark identification virtually impossible.

The Prehistoric Dinosaur from Melted Glacier Theory

As we all know, according to mainstream science, dinosaurs became extinct more than 45 million years ago. The notion that a dead dinosaur might be lying on a beach somewhere is simply not acceptable so; in some cases it is suggested that perhaps the prehistoric creature had been thawed out from inside a glacier.

Unfortunately, this hardly helps at all since the creature would have had to have been alive at that time and the most recent ice age ended-according to science only 20,000 years ago or so. That would still be a blow to the current paradigm’s timeline. Frozen pre-historic monsters from the last ice age are not acceptable either. (The Book of Job, On Finding an Ice Age Book)

The Alaska Monster List

In 1923; a team of adventurers and a “priest” ministering to the local natives in that area of the Arctic, hunted and eventually encountered a giant dinosaur, a Ceratosaurus, or so it was claimed, with a 700 pound moose in his mouth and a bad attitude.. The distance across the Bering Strait from Siberia to Alaska’s Seward Peninsula is approximately 55 miles. From at least 1923 to 1956, a series of sightings of huge creatures, all believed to be dinosaurs were sighted, living or dead in those cold, fairly proximate locations.

“The prehistoric thing, larger and bulkier than four elephants, lurched down the ravine, sweeping rocks and boulders aside like pebbles, it’s head, high above the ground, bore in those awful Jaws a 700-pound moose”…. …Hamilton Evening Journal, July 14, 1923. Full Story Here

That sighting remains unexplained.

In 1930; the carcass of a “giant, lizard-like creature” with fur was discovered partially extending from a block of ice near Alaska’s Glacier Island. It reportedly had a 14 foot tail which began at its ribs and which looked like that of a dinosaur….

In 1946: Prehistoric Monster Found in Alaska
“ANCHOR POINT, ALASKA, Oct. Anthropologists from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks were enroute here today to examine the body of a huge, lizard-like creature identified tentatively as a prehistoric tyrannosaurus or gorgonosaurus.

It was believed to have been preserved in a glacier until washed ashore here Wednesday. Although positive identification by experts has not yet been made, Fairbanks physicians studying anthropology texts said the “creature’ was “definitely prehistoric” and may belong to one of two species”.

The creature measured nearly nineteen feet from tip to tail. It’s head measured 2 feet by 2 ½ feet and its mouth featured a row of teeth 18 inches long.

“The animal had large hind legs and a heavy thigh bone which measured, approximately 4 feet from the hip to the first joint. The forelegs were short and heavy.

Leathery skin on the head and neck was covered with bristly hair and flesh almost completely covered the head, shoulders and hips. The backbone had broken through the animal’s side and there was some evidence of decomposition”….. Traverse City Record-Eagle, October 25, 1946:

In 1956; a carcass fifteen feet wide at its widest point and more than 100 feet long washed up on a distant beach at Yakutat, Alaska. “”A Denver geologist flew up to see the decomposing carcass when word of it reached civilization. The geologist came back from the site a shaken man.

“It had a head like that of a baby elephant with a snout. It looked like nothing in the world. Nothing I’ve ever heard of anywhere.””… Pasadena Independent – June 15, 1960, Pasadena, California

In 1969; a 65-foot fishing vessel known as the M.V. Mylark carrying very sophisticated sonar equipment detected and recorded the shape and outline of a moving creature approximately 200 feet long in the waters near Kodiak Alaska.

“In 1969, an Alaskan shrimp boat fitted with state of the art sonar surveillance equipment encountered a creature, which — due to its enormity — the men on board could only speculate must be a “dinosaur.”

First brought to international attention by esteemed author, adventurer and paranormal investigator, Ivan T. Sanderson, the facts surrounding this case offer some of the most intriguing “proof” of the existence of a heretofore unknown species of colossal aquatic fauna.”

….” “Imagine the sonar operator’s surprise when the machine suddenly presented him with a clear silhouette of an enormous ‘creature,’ between 150 and 180 feet long, with two pairs of flippers, an extended tapering tail, and a long, slender neck capped by a rather snub-nosed head!”…..Fuller Story at American Monsters

News Article Excerpts:

Scientific Riddle;This Furry Monster of a Million Years Ago, Brought
to Shore by His Glacial Tomb.
1 – 11 -31 Ogden Standard-Examiner

….”But clambering clumsily from, floe to floe,.stopping now and then to assure his footing, now and then to gaze about at this north country in which he was a stranger, a giant creature, covered with glossy fur, made his way toward Glacier Island. He blinked his eyes—they were larger than a man’s head, and
rested. Then he looked; forward again and saw a large table of ice. He made for it.

His head measured six feet from nose to neck, and from mouth to tail tip he measured over fifty feet. The surface which would hold him in repose, without sinking,, would have to be a large one. He reached the glassy raft which his eyes had detected— and luck was with him. It was large enough to lay down and he went to sleep.

“……..It would seem, then, that if the creature found in the- ice off Glacier Island is in reality a reptile, it must have been encased before the genera! migration, began. This is inevitable, since a single member of a species could not exist long alone.

…….Months later, the inhabitants of that part of Alaska near Cordova and Glacier Island noticed that one of the cathedral-like icebergs which pass each year through. Bering Strait and Alaska Bay down into the Pacific had stopped in its course and edged up alongside Glacier Island.

…..These people had seen icebergs before—often enough to cease to regard them as a curiosity. But now, faced with the opportunity of climbing aboard one, of clambering over its jagged edges-, they found a new enthusiasm.

When they drew near, however, their enthusiasm turned to amazement. The ice was dark! There was something inside it! So they ran for axes and saws to cut the surface off the berg, to determine what it contained.

The striking Louis Bredormann drawing on this page depicts, what they saw, and the conditions under which they are laboring to extricate their find for science’s sake. Beyond the fact that they know that it is the same creature which went to sleep on an ice floe ages and ages ago, they are unable to identify it. The most even learned scientists have been able to say is that “it looks like a giant lizard with fur.”

Photo:This is a newspaper drawing of a carcass found near Glacier Island Alaska in 1930. Click for Higher Resolution Version

Perhaps when Dr. Charles E. Bunnell, President of Alaska College, has had an opportunity to- view it at first hand, a more comprehensive verdict will be forthcoming. Dr. Bunnel was very skeptical when it was first reported, giving it as his opinion that it was a whale, recently encased in ice. But those who have been near it, and have described it cling to their original description—”like a giant lizard
with fur.”

Odd Creature Conceivably Pre-Historic
Huge Carcass Lies On Gulf of Alaska Shore, near Juneau
YAKUTAT, Alaska, July 23, 1956 UP)—
A frighteningly huge carcass, conservatively estimated at more than 100 feet long and 15 feet wide at the broadest visible point, has washed up on the sandy, wind-swept shore of the Gulf of Alaska, 60 miles southeast of here.

The hairy-coated monster has mystified the few persons who have seen it.

Speculation as to what it might have been ranged from an extinct prehistoric beast long encased in a nearby glacier to some warm-blooded sea animal.

…. At Seattle, Trevor Kincaid, retired University of Washington zoologist, said the description did not fit any prehistoric creature he knew about and that the hair on it precluded its belonging to the living whale or elephant families. He suggested efforts be made to preserve some of its skeletal structure, or the skull and jaws and teeth, or its hide and hair, in efforts to Identify it.

Found By Guide
A veteran Alaska guide, Earl Lemming, discovered the monster two months ago.

……Its head measures seven feet in width. The eye sockets, with fragments of decaying flesh still clinging to them, are between seven and nine inches in diameter.

The sockets are approximately 42 inches apart. Reddish-brown hair about two inches long covers its thick, decaying hide. Thick, oily-like blood flowed freely from parts of the flesh when poked with a stick or shovel.

….A “flipper” appendage, resembling an elephant’s ear, has webbed digits and is about four feet wide and three feet long. The oval upper jaw, with a tusk-like bone, protrudes about 5 feet from the end of the fixed lower jaw.