Are Giants Real?

Tuned in: The Black Keys, Dead and Gone

I have a passion for history and a keen interest in any odd images-1phenomena that traverses the story of man and our world. Consequently, I’m always on the lookout for rare events or occurrences that often go unnoticed by the general population.

One strange item that caught my attention recently was the idea of red-haired giants that once roamed the earth.  Could it be possible that Nordic and other mythologies have real truths woven into their stories?  Upon investigation, this is what I found.

Europeans and Native American tribes have both recorded encounters with this race of giants or the discovery of their skeletons.

Native American legends tell how their first ancestors 15,000 years ago in North America encountered and warred against these red-haired giants.  Even Aztec and Mayan tribes recorded their encounters with this race of giants.  In the United States, their burial mounds, dwellings and remains have been discovered in the Northeast, Midwest and Southwest.

The Paiute tribe found in Nevada as well as Utah and Arizona has a legend that says that they fought white, red-haired giants who claimed the land before them.  The Paiutes and other tribes wanting to rid themselves of these vicious man-eaters joined together and finally cornered the last of this race in a cave.  They then set the entrance on fire, shooting with arrows those who tried to escape, while the rest asphyxiated.  The cave was sealed later by an earthquake and became a home to bats.  In 1924 the legend became credible.  A company mining the Lovelock caves in Nevada for saltpeter, a byproduct of decaying bat guano and ‘a chief ingredient of gunpowder,’ reported finding skeletons and artifacts to archaeologists.  Among these were ‘the mummified remains of two red-haired giants—one a female 6.5 tall, the other a male over 8 feet tall.’  In addition, in 1931 two more skeletons measuring over 8 feet tall were found in a dry lakebed near Lovelock, Nevada.

European explorers have also met giants.  Some written accounts come from some famous men such as Sir Francis Drake, Ferdinand Magellan, and Hernando de Soto.

The earliest mention of these giants surfaced in ‘1520 from the account of Antonio Pigafetta, chronicler of Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition:’

‘But one day (without anyone expecting it) we saw a giant who was on the shore [near today’s Puerto San Julián, Argentina], quite naked, and who danced, leaped and sang, and while he sang he threw sand and dust on his head.  Our captain [Magellan] sent one of his men toward him, charging him to leap and sing like the other in order to reassure him and to show him friendship.  Which he did.  Immediately the man of the ship, dancing led this giant to a small island where the captain awaited him.  And when he was before us, he began to marvel and to be afraid, and he raised one finger upward, believing that we came from heaven. And he was so tall that the tallest of us only came to his waist.  Withal he was well proportioned… The captain named the people of this sort Pathagoni.’

‘The etymology of the word is unclear, but Patagonia came to mean the ‘Land of the Bigfeet.’  Magellan seized two of the younger males as hostages to bring them back to Spain, but they got sick and died on the journey.’ (

More than fifty years later Sir Francis Drake reported meeting several red-haired giants who stood over 9 feet tall. Other lesser known explorers have also written accounts about finding the skeletons of giant humans.


British Strand Magazine, Fossilized Irish Giant, 1895

In Ireland in 1895, a skeleton unearthed in County Antrim was 12 feet 2 inches tall.  It was displayed in Dublin, Liverpool and Manchester, but it is unknown what happened to the giant and its owner.

It seems that the majority of giant skeletons have been found in the Americas and in ‘mounds,’ ceremonial sites.  Ancient mounds are scattered throughout the U.S. with a majority found in the Midwest and South.  Most mounds unearthed hold the remains of ‘average-sized humans.  But older mounds have been discovered containing the skeletal remains of giants…giants with red hair.’

In a recent episode of the History Channel’s ‘America Unearthed’ a Minnesota farmer found the bones of Native American humans and a giant in his yard.  The show’s host, Scott Wolter, a geologist, thought that it might mean Vikings explored America (Could even a Viking be that tall?), but the farmer claimed that the state ‘secreted the bones away and kept the find quiet.’  In addition, the Native American bones made it a sacred site, which could not be disturbed without the proper experts on site and ‘tons of bureaucratic red tape’ required.

Even bigger finds, over 200, have occurred in Wisconsin.  Yet, for the most part, these finds have not made local and national news since the 1950’s.  Many believe that there is a fear that evidence of a giant race would question the evolution theory.  In the literature concerning this topic, accusations abound that the Smithsonian Institute is in possession of giant skeletons, but they are suppressing their existence and other artifacts that challenge common history and science.

Vine Deloria, A Native American author and professor of law, writes:

‘… The great interloper of ancient burial grounds, the nineteenth century Smithsonian Institution, created a one-way portal, through which uncounted bones have been spirited. This door and the contents of its vault are virtually sealed off to anyone, but government officials. Among these bones may lay answers not even sought by these officials concerning the deep past.”

imagesAre giants fact or fiction?  Did they inhabit the earth?  I tend to favor the idiom: ‘Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.’ What do you think?

Cool sources:  Terence Aym – ‘Who Were the Red-Haired Giants of North America’ – Mark Shernick – ‘A Giant Mystery: 18 Strange Skeletons Found in Wisconsin’ – ‘Nevada’s Mysterious Cave of Red-Haired Giants’


About cinzia8

Published writer and teacher.
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