Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 13.djvu/211

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THE CARDIFF GIANT, AND OTHER FRAUDS.

ing of the 9th of the same month the heavily-laden team arrived, attracting little attention, owing to the darkness and rain, though the peculiar appearance of the iron-bound case and its apparent weight, from the amount of motive power demanded in transportation, had excited considerable curiosity and comment on the road. The box was unloaded and concealed in a pile of chaff, and a few nights later the giant was lowered into its resting-place by means of a derrick.

In October, 1869, nearly a year having elapsed, Hull wrote Newell to "find the giant;" when, in accordance with prearranged plans, two neighbors, Gideon Emmons and Henry Nichols, were engaged to sink a well; one Woodmansee was secured to stone it, and Newell, aided by one Parker, began drawing stone. Suddenly the shovel of Nichols struck a hard substance, which, in clearing away, proved to be a massive stone foot, calling forth from Emmons the exclamation, "Jerusalem, Nichols, it's a big Injun!" As the earth was cleared away, revealing the outlines, several neighbors, chancing that way, were summoned to view the wonder. This was the nucleus of a crowd which numbered thousands a few hours later.

It has been asserted that the earth showed no signs of having been excavated so recently as the year previous; but one John Hagan, who was among the first of the sight-seers, in a sworn affidavit says: "I took a shovel and got down into the hole, and as fast as they uncovered the body toward the head I cleared the dirt off about up to the hand on the belly. When we were clearing off from the upper portion of the body, the earth cleaved off from the sod and fell upon the body. I said, 'Boys, this is the spot where he was put down.' No reply was made, but Mr. Newell stepped around, and, taking a shovel, trimmed the sod down square with where it came off."

The following day, Sunday, four medical men of the neighborhood, of scientific pretensions, investigated the subject, swallowing the hoax without the least difficulty, pronouncing it to be a "petrified man." Later it was examined by Dr. Boynton, of Syracuse, a man possessed of some antiquarian knowledge, who decided it to be a statue "made some three hundred years ago by the Jesuit fathers," and at once offered $10,000 for it. This and more tempting offers were declined, as sightseers at half a dollar per head were apparently unlimited in number. However, Newell, in compliance with Hull's order, sold a three-fourths interest to half a dozen citizens of Syracuse for $30,000. A show-man was now placed in charge, and, in the way of advertisement, invitations were sent to Prof. Agassiz, Prof. Hull (State geologist), S. B. Woolworth (secretary of the university), etc. November 3d a large delegation of scientific men assembled from different parts of the State for deliberate and thorough inspection, who at once pronounced it a statue, the State geologist declaring it to be of great antiquity. Prof. Ward, who filled the chair of Natural Sciences in the Rochester University, said, "Although not dating back to the stone age, it is nevertheless