Friday, November 27, 2009

Grand Canyon Mummies Found?

I stumbled across this amazing subject and found out it’s all over the Internet! An actual article written up in the Phoenix Gazette in 1909 told of an explorer finding caves within the Grand Canyon when riding the Colorado river in a boat. What he found was written in astounding detail in the article below. I’m fascinated with the details and the intrigue.

On one site they wrote, “Historian and linguist Carl Hart, editor of WORLD EXPLORER, then obtained a hiker's map of the Grand Canyon from a bookstore in Chicago. Poring over the map, we were amazed to see that much of the area on the north side of the canyon has Egyptian names. The area around Ninety-four Mile Creek and Trinity Creek had areas (rock formations, apparently) with names like Tower of Set, Tower of Ra, Horus Temple, Osiris Temple, and Isis Temple. In the Haunted Canyon area were such names as the Cheops Pyramid, the Buddha Cloister, Buddha Temple, Manu Temple and Shiva Temple. Was there any relationship between these places and the alleged Egyptian discoveries in the Grand Canyon? We called a state archaeologist at the Grand Canyon, and were told that the early explorers had just liked Egyptian and Hindu names, but that it was true that this area was off limits to hikers or other visitors, "because of dangerous caves. Indeed, this entire area with the Egyptian and Hindu place names in the Grand Canyon is a forbidden zone - no one is allowed into this large area. We could only conclude that this was the area where the vaults were located. Yet today, this area is curiously off-limits to all hikers and even, in large part, park personnel.

This is the actual article from the April 5, 1909 Phoenix Gazette:

Mysteries of Immense Rich Cavern being brought to light

Jordan is enthused
Remarkable finds indicate ancient people migrated from Orient

The latest news of the progress of the explorations of what is now regarded by scientists as not only the oldest archeological discovery in the United States, but one of the most valuable in the world, which was mentioned some time ago in the Gazette, was brought to the city yesterday by G.E. Kinkaid, the explorer who found the great underground citadel of the Grand Canyon during a trip from Green River, Wyoming, down the Colorado, in a wooden boat, to Yuma, several months ago.

According to the story related to the Gazette by Mr. Kinkaid, the archaelogists of the Smithsonian Institute, which is financing the expeditions, have made discoveries which almost conclusively prove that the race which inhabited this mysterious cavern, hewn in solid rock by human hands, was of oriental origin, possibly from Egypt, tracing back to Ramses. If their theories are borne out by the translation of the tablets engraved with heiroglyphics, the mystery of the prehistoric peoples of North America, their ancient arts, who they were and whence they came, will be solved. Egypt and the Nile, and Arizona and the Colorado will be linked by a historical chain running back to ages which staggers the wildest fancy of the fictionist.

A Thorough Examination

Under the direction of Prof. S. A. Jordan, the Smithsonian Institute is now prosecuting the most thorough explorations, which will be continued until the last link in the chain is forged. Nearly a mile underground, about 1480 feet below the surface, the long main passage has been delved into, to find another mammoth chamber from which radiates scores of passageways, like the spokes of a wheel.

Several hundred rooms have been discovered, reached by passageways running from the main passage, one of them having been explored for 854 feet and another 634 feet. The recent finds include articles which have never been known as native to this country, and doubtless they had their origin in the orient. War weapons, copper instruments, sharp-edged and hard as steel, indicate the high state of civilization reached by these strange people. So interested have the scientists become that preparations are being made to equip the camp for extensive studies, and the force will be increased to thirty or forty persons.

Mr. Kinkaid's Report

Mr. Kinkaid was the first white child born in Idaho and has been an explorer and hunter all his life, thirty years having been in the service of the Smithsonian Institute. Even briefly recounted, his history sounds fabulous, almost grotesque.

"First, I would impress that the cavern is nearly inaccessible. The entrance is 1,486 feet down the sheer canyon wall. It is located on government land and no visitor will be allowed there under penalty of trespass. The scientists wish to work unmolested, without fear of archeological discoveries being disturbed by curio or relic hunters. A trip there would be fruitless, and the visitor would be sent on his way. The story of how I found the cavern has been related, but in a paragraph: I was journeying down the Colorado river in a boat, alone, looking for mineral. Some forty-two miles up the river from the El Tovar Crystal canyon, I saw on the east wall, stains in the sedimentary formation about 2,000 feet above the river bed. There was no trail to this point, but I finally reached it with great difficulty.
Above a shelf which hid it from view from the river, was the mouth of the cave. There are steps leading from this entrance some thirty yards to what was, at the time the cavern was inhabited, the level of the river. When I saw the chisel marks on the wall inside the entrance, I became interested, securing my gun and went in. During that trip I went back several hundred feet along the main passage till I came to the crypt in which I discovered the mummies. One of these I stood up and photographed by flashlight. I gathered a number of relics, which I carried down the Colorado to Yuma, from whence I shipped them to Washington with details of the discovery. Following this, the explorations were undertaken.

The Passages

"The main passageway is about 12 feet wide, narrowing to nine feet toward the farther end. About 57 feet from the entrance, the first side-passages branch off to the right and left, along which, on both sides, are a number of rooms about the size of ordinary living rooms of today, though some are 30 by 40 feet square. These are entered by oval-shaped doors and are ventilated by round air spaces through the walls into the passages. The walls are about three feet six inches in thickness.

The passages are chiseled or hewn as straight as could be laid out by an engineer. The ceilings of many of the rooms converge to a center. The side-passages near the entrance run at a sharp angle from the main hall, but toward the rear they gradually reach a right angle in direction.

The Shrine

"Over a hundred feet from the entrance is the cross-hall, several hundred feet long, in which are found the idol, or image, of the people's god, sitting cross-legged, with a lotus flower or lily in each hand. The cast of the face is oriental, and the carving this cavern. The idol almost resembles Buddha, though the scientists are not certain as to what religious worship it represents. Taking into consideration everything found thus far, it is possible that this worship most resembles the ancient people of Tibet.

Surrounding this idol are smaller images, some very beautiful in form; others crooked-necked and distorted shapes, symbolical, probably, of good and evil. There are two large cactus with protruding arms, one on each side of the dais on which the god squats. All this is carved out of hard rock resembling marble. In the opposite corner of this cross-hall were found tools of all descriptions, made of copper. These people undoubtedly knew the lost art of hardening this metal, which has been sought by chemicals for centureis without result. On a bench running around the workroom was some charcoal and other material probably used in the process. There is also slag and stuff similar to matte, showing that these ancients smelted ores, but so far no trace of where or how this was done has been discovered, nor the origin of the ore.

"Among the other finds are vases or urns and cups of copper and gold, made very artistic in design. The pottery work includes enameled ware and glazed vessels. Another passageway leads to granaries such as are found in the oriental temples. They contain seeds of varous kinds. One very large storehouse has not yet been entered, as it is twelve feet high and can be reached only from above. Two copper hooks extend on the edge, which indicates that some sort of ladder was attached. These granaries are rounded, as the materials of which they are constructed, I think, is a ver hard cement. A gray metal is also found in this cavern, which puzzles the scientists, for its identity has not been established. It resembles platinum. Strewn promiscuously over the floor everywhere are what people call "cats eyse', a yellow stone of no great value. Each one is engraved with the head of the Malay type.

The Hieroglyphics

"On all the urns, or walls over doorways , and tablets of stone which were found by the image are the mysterious hieroglyphics, the key to which the Smithsonian Institute hopes yet to discover. The engraving on the tables probably has something to do with the religion of the people. Similar hieroglyphics have been found in southern Arizona. Among the pictorial writings, only two animals are found. One is of prehistoric type.

The Crypt

"The tomb or crypt in which the mummies were found is one of the largest of the chambers, the walls slanting back at an angle of about 35 degrees. On these are tiers of mummies, each one occupying a separate hewn shelf. At the head of each is a small bench, on which is found copper cups and pieces of broken swords. Some of the mummies are covered with clay, and all are wrapped in a bark fabric.

The urns or cups on the lower tiers are crude, while as the higher shelves are reached, the urns are finer in design, showing a later stage of civilization. It is worthy of note that all the mummies examined so far have proved to be male, no children or females being buried here. This leads to the belief that this exterior section was the warriors' barracks.

"Among the discoveries no bones of animals have been found, no skins, no clothing, no bedding. Many of the rooms are bare but for water vessels. One room, about 40 by 700 feet, was probably the main dining hall, for cooking utensils are found here. What these people lived on is a problem, though it is presumed that they came south in the winter and farmed in the valleys, going back north in the summer.

Upwards of 50,000 people could have lived in the caverns comfortably. One theory is that the present Indian tribes found in Arizona are descendants of the serfs or slaves of the people which inhabited the cave. Undoubtedly a good many thousands of years before the Christian era, a people lived here which reached a high stage of civilization. The chronology of human history is full of gaps. Professor Jordan is much enthused over the discoveries and believes that the find will prove of incalculable value in archeological work.

"One thing I have not spoken of, may be of interest. There is one chamber of the passageway to which is not ventilated, and when we approached it a deadly, snaky smell struck us. Our light would not penetrate the gloom, and until stronger ones are available we will not know what the chamber contains. Some say snakes, but other boo-hoo this idea and think it may contain a deadly gas or chemicals used by the ancients. No sounds are heard, but it smells snaky just the same. The whole underground installation gives one of shaky nerves the creeps. The gloom is like a weight on one's shoulders, and our flashlights and candles only make the darkness blacker. Imagination can revel in conjectures and ungodly daydreams back through the ages that have elapsed till the mind reels dizzily in space."

An Indian Legend

In connection with this story, it is notable that among the Hopi Indians the tradition is told that their ancestors once lived in an underworld in the Grand Canyon till dissension arose between the good and the bad, the people of one heart and the people of two hearts. Machetto, who was their chief, counseled them to leave the underworld, but there was no way out. The chief then caused a tree to grow up and pierce the roof of the underworld, and then the people of one heart climbed out. They tarried by Paisisvai (Red River), which is the Colorado, and grew grain and corn.

They sent out a message to the Temple of the Sun, asking the blessing of peace, good will and rain for people of one heart. That messenger never returned, but today at the Hopi villages at sundown can be seen the old men of the tribe out on the housetops gazing toward the sun, looking for the messenger. When he returns, their lands and ancient dwelling place will be restored to them. That is the tradition.

Among the engravings of animals in the cave is seen the image of a heart over the spot where it is located. The legend was learned by W.E. Rollins, the artist, during a year spent with the Hopi Indians.

There are two theories of the origin of the Egyptians. One is that they came from Asia; another that the racial cradle was in the upper Nile region. Heeren, an Egyptologist, believed in the Indian origin of the Egyptians. The discoveries in the Grand Canyon may throw further light on human evolution and prehistoric ages.

Now that you’ve read this, I’d love to hear your impressions on this intriguing subject! (Oh, and this series about the Grand Canyon has more coming)


  1. How intriguing and something I haven't even heard the faintest hint of. When I first saw your title, I thought it might have been about the Husband and Wife explorers who traveled the Colorado river in the early 1900s who disappeared. But this story is even more interesting! Thanks for sharing.

  2. I love this whole subject and I even blogged about it once. My opinion is that there is proof there of something certain people don't want us to know. It's either elitist historians not wanting to have to change what they believe about history, or some other group who would be affected by discoveries there. On top of that I have a nutcase theory that perhaps it proves the book of Mormon right, so people covered it up in order to keep the truth from coming out.

    Either way if any of the story is true it would have major implications for what we know about history.

  3. It is an intriguing story. The detail is so elaborate, it seems as if it's an actual account. Although, from what I've heard, getting to that cave takes serious climbing gear, something I doubt a dude on a little skiff on the Colorado possessed. I doubt it would prove the Book of Mormon, but it might make the ancient Hopi story of a hole in the Grand Canyon where people enter this world from prior worls that were unsuccessful strangely accurate. Some had described this ancient group as being 7 feet tall and with Asian eyes and influences in their toolmaking. Yet, Egyptian style hieroglyphs and mummy making. That's a pretty freaky mix. Still, I'm desperately trying to find out from hikers how many have tried to find this spot and just how closed those paths are. I've heard that they are pretty high in security on the North Rim, keeping people out of the wrong spots. In order to get to the caves, one would have to have about 1000 feet of rope minimum and be out in the open, easily seen climbing down... You gotta figure someone's tried it.

  4. wow this is just utterly Amazing. I am still curious as to how people got to the Americas in the first place, was the earth on a tilt, the upper hemisphere warmer and people were able to cross from syberia to alaska? Or did they arive by ships. Its just utterly amazing.

  5. Hey MatthewX78;
    It seems they're pretty certain they entered through the land bridge that existed between Russia/Alaska and that the Native Americans are basically descended from Asians, which apparently they share similar DNA. I do believe that also opens the door for oher existing creatures, like Yeti, to come and evolve into a Bigfoot. One of the most mind boggling things did man manage to come up with heiroglyphs, mummifying, pyramids, and astronomy knowledge simultaneously? I think it's entirely possible that some places had islands that don't exist anymore, making ocean crossing a bit easier, as well. Islands come and go all the time. Now, I'm off to get some more posts on Grand Canyon freakiness done.

  6. This is really new to me also
    I can't wait to read more about it and i will try to look stuff up on my own if i can get time
    one thing i do think -and again unfortunately i don't say anything with 100 percent certainty anymore -is that we don't know 90 percent of our "real" history and that i think a lot of the answers to our "real" history await us to decipher in Egypt -i think they will be earth-shaking and paradigm shattering if it is ever done!!
    fantastic article as always Autumnforest -all the best to you and your family!!!

  7. Hey Dev;
    I agree. I think these ancient sites hold a lot more info than we're realizing. We just have to get into their mindset on how to retain information for the future...

  8. amazing article! i've not heard any of this info either. it would be nice if it were true. i know there are parts of the grand canyon that isolated - who knows what amazing stuff is out there.

  9. This is one of those stories that is certainly intriguing, but until more information comes out or I get a chance to see it for myself, it'll just be a footnote in my mind. If I remember correctly, the Smithsonian had denied being involved in the find and claims to have no knowledge of it either. It's also been suggested the newspaper just printed the story because it was so fantastic and they thought it would sell a lot of copies. Skeptics like to point out that newspapers from that era had a tendency to fabricate stories or not do their fact checking sometimes.

    But, I'm not going to jump to conclusions either way. I'm not going to assume the story was a lie or assume it is the truth. Thor Heyerdahl proved in the 1970s the the ancients could sail overseas by sailing and ancient Egyptian ship from Africa to the Americas. Archaeological finds in North and South America indicate the presence of Chinese, Phoenician, African, and Celtic peoples and possibly Romans - and, if this story is accurate, Egyptian people too. I've also heard about Egyptian statuettes being found in Mexico. I tried to find a picture of them, but this article about them is the best I could find:

    Egyptian hieroglyphs have been found in Australia too. The skeptics, of course, assume it is a hoax though. However, in the Siwa Oasis in Egypt, the remains of a marsupial (a kangaroo, if I remember correctly) were allegedly excavated...possibly lending credence to the idea that Egyptians had visited Australia.

    So as far as the possibility that there are remains of Egyptian settlements in the Grand Canyon, I think it is absolutely possible. However, I'd like a little more evidence before I'm convinced Kincaid's find is real. The ancients were certainly capable of sailing overseas...they wouldn't even necessarily have to have crossed the land bridge. The whole 'ancient people thought the earth was flat' is a modern myth started by Washington Irving in his biography of Christopher Columbus. Humans have known the earth was round seemingly throughout recorded history...just google 'ancient atlas statues' and notice that depictions of Atlas showed him holding up a ROUND earth! The ancients sailed many places, but as Naveed mentioned, there are elitist historians who don't want to change what they believe about history.

  10. Hey Jeff;
    Thanks for your input. I admit the story is fantastic! I probably wouldn't think anything of it except that a huge portion of the North Rim is named after Egyptian names and much of it is not on hiking trails. That makes me wonder. I don't see any logical reason why the Smithsonian would hold back such information, but in 1909 they could have had their own reasons to bury it in their archives never to be seen again unless they get a curious worker there. That's interesting how Egyptian items ended up in other places. Very interesting! I'm not certain if man knew the earth was particularly round, but if you think about it, if you've never been outside the earth to look at it and you've always walked, ridden, or boated as far as you can imagine and not run out of world, they probably thought of the world as more or less endless. I really do believe man took to the ocean like the Vikings did and just went for it. Just look how they went in through Newfoundland and into Michigan through the rivers and lakes.

  11. Jeff;
    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that the thing that seems so preposterous about the find was the size of the skeletons--a race of giants!

  12. Aristotle was one of the earliest to point out the earth was round. He noted the earth cast a spherical shadow on the moon.

    As for giants, that's a subject I've been interested in too. There's a lot of evidence, both archaeological and historical, that giants once roamed the earth. Generally, most of them were only around the 7 foot range, but I've heard about some giants being as tall as 10-12 feet or even as tall as 20 feet! Even today, seeing someone that is 7 feet tall is still a bit unusual, but imagine seeing a whole race of people that were 7 feet tall!

    Here's my post on giants:

  13. Hey Jeff;
    Yeah, even with Aristotle's supposition the earth was round, it's doubtful that's knowledge common man had around the world because common man didn't necessarily read and such statements weren't widespread, especially to the Vikings, so we can only assume man didn't have a concept of the shape of the world so much as that it never seemed to run out when they traveled. Man's adventurous by nature, so I think traveling the ocean was done. Perhaps only 1 in 100 attempts made the distance, but that's still enough to find other worlds.

    The giants are my subject of the next post. I've been fascinated with the findings. I know that in general, man is taller and leaner in hotter climes and shorter and fatter in colder climes, probably due to needs to dissipate heat and retain it. It could be a climatic issue that necessitated a period of tall people. It could have actually also been an existing pituitary problem caused by environmental issues that caused giantism. It's really interesting to suppose such things. Seems that from the findings of the giant bones, these people existed everywhere which means not an inbreeding issue in a small community.

  14. really neat article. I had heard scattered stories of an ancient treasure hidden in a cave and guarded by a great serpent that also led to a Shangri-la like area beyond the snake. this piques that memory with the snaky aroma mentioned.
    The problem i have is, if he was looking for minerals and has a basic geological knowledge, why does he describe the cactus pillars as marble-like? Can't he tell. I think he should know if it's marble or not. it's not a rare stone even then.

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  16. Julia;
    Good point! A lot of the supposed discoveries seem to borrowed things from other cultures so it sounds rather fantastic sounding to me. I also think that should the Smithsonian know about it, they would proudly be displaying the artifacts and a portion of the canyon would be blocked off as they excavate more. It would have changed the entire history of Native American culture. Still, there are lots of interesting tidbits that still remain, like all the Egyptian sounding paths and features in the Grand Canyon...

  17. I don't mean to burst anyone's bubble, but I work at the Grand Canyon and the story about the Egyptian artifacts being found in a cave was an April Fool's joke. If you look at when that article was first published, it was in early April of 1909. It was a joke by the reporters and some of the staff here, and soon afterwards they released a statement saying so but not before newspapers in the rest of the country took it and ran with it. That is the historical truth. No need to fabricate conspiracy theories.

    Good work, Autumnforest. I enjoyed reading your Grand Canyon series.