10/5/14  #791
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This week Conspiracy Journal brings you such spine cracking stories as:

Aliens May be Out There, but Too Distant for Contact -
Gifts From The 'Furry Folk' -
Ancient Egypt Illuminated by Electricity? -
AND: Meet Issie, Japan’s Very Own Loch Ness Monster

All these exciting stories and MORE in this week's issue of
CONSPIRACY JOURNAL!

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Coming At You From Conspiracy Journal


Two Book Houdini Special

Get This Amazing Deal Before It Vanishes Before Your Very Eyes!

The History Channel recently rewrote the life of Harry Houdini. Here, Conspiracy Journal sets the record straight with two amazing books containing the research of both Houdini and the creator of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Revealing The Bizarre Powers of Harry Houdini
and
The Paranormal World of Sherlock Holmes


Was Harry Houdini a closet Psychic? Clairvoyant? Or Spirit Medium?  His friend Sir Arthur Conan Doyle insisted he had the evidence that the world's greatest escape artist was not the skeptic he made himself out to be.

At his burial some curious and suggestive words were used by the presiding rabbi: "HOUDINI POSSESSED A WONDROUS POWER THAT HE NEVER UNDERSTOOD AND WHICH HE NEVER REVEALED TO ANYONE IN LIFE!

The creator of Sherlock Holes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Harry Houdini were strange bedfellows. Doyle was a contemporary of the world's greatest magician and escape artist, who continually battled his friend over the legitimacy of life after death, and the reality of spiritualism. Doyle was a "true believer," while Houdini made it his "mission" to denounce just about all things preternatural. . .

Doyle was convinced - from what he personally witnessed and what others confided to him - that Houdini could read minds, dematerialize, possessed supernatural strength, and was guided by angelic forces which shielded him from harm even during the most dangerous of escape performances which likely would have caused death to others. Doyle stated that Houdini had once remarked, "There are some of my feats which my own wife does not know the secret of." And a famous Chinese conjurer who had seen Houdini perform added, "This is not a trick, it is a gift."

Sadly, many of Houdini's feats died with him, even though they would have been an invaluable asset. "What can cover all these facts," states Doyle, "save that there was some element in his power which was peculiar to himself, that could only point to a psychic element -- in a word, that he was a medium."

Here, is both sides of the story -- in the actual words of the famed Sherlock Holmes originator and Houdini himself, who went out of his way to create the impression that fakes and phonies were afoot everywhere in the "shady world" of table tapping, levitating trumpets, spirit photography, slate writing, as well as the materialization of ectoplasmic forms in the darkening shadows of the séance room.

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-  JUST LEAVE A MESSAGE DEPARTMENT -

Aliens May be Out There, but Too Distant for Contact
By Irene Klotz

The Milky Way may be home to some 3,000 extraterrestrial civilizations but the vast distances between our galactic cousins will make contact extremely rare, a new study concludes.

Data collected by NASA’s Kepler space telescope and other observatories scouting for planets beyond the solar system indicate Earth is one of some 40 billion potentially habitable worlds in the galaxy, with about one new life-friendly planet forming every year, astronomer Michael Garrett, head of the Dutch astronomy research foundation ASTRON, said at the International Astronomical Congress in Toronto.

Sounds promising, until you consider the sheer size of the Milky Way, which spans more than 100,000 light-years in diameter. Light travels at about 186,000 miles per second, but a signal will still take more than 4 years to reach neighboring system Alpha Centauri and 100,000 years to travel from one end of the galaxy to the other.

“On average, you’d expect the civilizations to be separated by at least 1,000 light-years in the Milky Way. That’s a large distance, and for communication purposes you need to allow for twice the travel distance, so you’re talking about civilizations that have to be around for at least a few thousand years in order to have the opportunity to talk to each other,” Garrett said.

“We don’t really know the time scales in which civilizations persist,” he added.

The one example available -- Earth -- indicates that life essentially developed as soon as the conditions were right, but intelligent life arose comparatively late.

“It’s really just essentially in the last few minutes of the overall evolution of life on the planet," Garrett said. "I don’t want to be too negative about this, but ... my basic conclusion is that SETI signals will be rare in the Milky Way."

That doesn’t mean astronomers shouldn’t look, he added. Quite the contrary, given the huge technological leaps in radio astronomy and in data processing techniques compared to what was available for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, or SETI, programs 60 years ago.

SETI also is benefitting from sister radio astronomy projects, such as the ongoing quest to find the source of mysterious transient radio bursts.

“SETI is not easy, but it’s a pursuit that is well worth doing. The question is so important,” Garrett said. “Everyone is interested, not just scientists and space enthusiasts. People in the street are interested to know what else is out there.”

Source: Discovery
http://news.discovery.com/space/alien-life-exoplanets/aliens-may-be-out-there-but-too-
distant-for-contact-141002.htm

- CRYPTO FOUR CORNERS DEPARTMENT -

Gifts From The 'Furry Folk'

JC Johnson and some of the Crypto Four Corners team, Leonard Dan & Jack Cary, were interviewing Gerald Bringle, a geologist & Bigfoot enthusiast. He had previously accompanied JC and the team at their study site in the Chuska Mts. of New Mexico. Gerald was recalling an earlier expedition, in the Bradshaw Mountains of Arizona (Prescott National Forest) along the Burro Creek. This location is approximately 50 miles northwest of Phoenix.

Gerald explained that he enjoyed swimming in the evening, and that there was a swimming hole in the creek behind his campsite. He used a game trail that gave him access to the creek. He noticed a huge free-standing rock along the trail, which he remarked was unusual. He continued towards the swimming hole.

When he was finished swimming, we walked back towards his campsite. When he approached the huge rock, he noticed a handful of red mesquite beans laying on it. This particular species of mesquite beans are not easy to find according to JC. Gerald thought that this may be a ‘gifting’ situation with one or more of the local Bigfoot or ‘Furry Ones,’ so he replaced the mesquite beans with several glass marbles. He continued walking toward his campsite.

The next morning he decided to go swimming, and as he approached the huge rock he noticed that the marbles were gone and in their place was a small blue pastel rock (possibly Arizona Blue Agate). Gerald replaced the small rock with trinkets and beads. Once again, when he returned he found another ‘gift.’ This back and forth exchanged continued for several days. Gerald offered more trinkets as well as a large coffee can of fruit. Each exchange yielded several interesting stones & objects of different shapes and designs. These included a Black Obsidian arrowhead crafted by earlier native people, shaped Hematite & Serpentine and a sea-bean (drift seed).

Then, finally, a remarkable artifact was presented to Gerald. The piece is a circular White & Black Agate medallion, carved with a distinctive ‘eye’ design on one side and an effigy of a deity on the other. It is similar, in design, to a Chinese lion or dragon…but it is not jade. JC contacted me about the piece in order to identify the markings. After some research, I determined that the piece may have been a talisman used by the Anasazi people. I had found depictions of original pieces and compared the markings. The Anasazi or Ancient Pueblo Peoples were an ancient Native American culture in what is now the southwestern United States. The word Anasazi or Anaasází is Navajo for “Ancient Ones” or “Ancient Enemy” and these people farmed the Four Corners area between 900 AD – 1300 AD.

There has been speculation that this and other artifacts may be part of a larger stash. This particular piece seems to have minimal wear on it, possibly remaining in one place for a significant amount of time. Is it possible that the Bigfoot population has access to these artifacts? Further information on this artifact is welcomed.

In the second part of the video, JC, Leonard and Jack return to an area near Crownpoint, New Mexico where they previously investigated a ‘Furry One’ track line. It was apparent that others had been coming back into the area. You can read about the investigation at – Crypto 4 Corners Investigates ‘Furry One’ Track Line. Leonard had talked to one of the residents, who recalled a rather unusual account of a small ‘Furry One’ outrunning family members on horseback. Another local rancher named Jonathan detailed an encounter where a dark being on four legs was seen sneaking up on birthing cattle in an attempt to steal the newborn. When confronted, this dark being stood up on two legs and quickly ran away.

Watch the video - Video Interview With Gerald Bringle - Gifting from the Furry Folks

Source: Phantoms and Monsters
http://www.phantomsandmonsters.com/2014/10/crypto-four-corners-
gifts-from-furry.html

- IT'S A WHOLE WIDE WORLD OF COLOR DEPARTMENT -

The Women With Superhuman Vision

As Concetta Antico took her pupils to the park for an art lesson, she would often question them about the many shades she saw flashing before her eyes. “I’d say, ‘Look at the light on the water – can you see the pink shimmering across that rock? Can you see the red on the edge of that leaf there?’” The students would all nod in agreement. It was only years later that she realised they were just too polite to tell the truth: the colours she saw so vividly were invisible to them.

Today, she knows that this is a symptom of a condition known as “tetrachromacy”. Thanks to a variation in a gene that influences the development of their retinas, people like Antico can see colours invisible to most of us. Consider a pebble pathway. What appears dull grey to you or me shines like a jeweller’s display to Antico. “The little stones jump out at me with oranges, yellows, greens, blues and pinks,” she says. “I’m kind of shocked when I realise what other people aren’t seeing.”

Tetrachromats are rare enough, but Antico is particularly remarkable, since, as an artist, she is able to give us a rare view into that world. “Her artwork might tap into a structure that all of us can appreciate,” says Kimberly Jameson at the University of California, Irvine, who has studied Antico extensively. It’s even possible that she might suggest ways for more people to see the same way.

The question of whether we all see the same colours has a long history in philosophy and science. In the past, there seemed little reason to expect huge differences. We know that almost everyone has three types of “cone cells” in their retina that each respond to a different bandwidth of light. The colour of an object depends on the particular combination of those signals, but although the exact sensitivity may vary between people, overall one person’s colours should roughly match another person’s. The exceptions were thought to be colour-blind people, where one of the cones is faulty. With reduced sensitivity at certain wavelengths, they struggle to tell the difference between reds and greens, for instance.

In theory, though, it could go the other way: according to some estimates, an extra cone would offer a hundred different variants to each colour that humans normally see. We know that this happens in nature: zebrafinches and goldfish both have a fourth cone that seems to help them differentiate apparently identical colours. About 20 years ago Gabriele Jordan at the University of Newcastle and John Mollon at the University of Cambridge proposed a way that it might be possible in humans too.

The crux of Jordan’s argument lay in the fact that the gene for our red and green cone types lies on the X chromosome. Since women have two X chromosomes, they could potentially carry two different versions of the gene, each encoding for a cone that is sensitive to slightly different parts of the spectrum. In addition to the other two, unaffected cones, they would therefore have four in total – making them a “tetrachromat”. For these reasons, it’s thought to be a condition exclusive to women, though researchers can’t totally rule out the possibility that men may somehow inherit it too.

Proving that these people actually see the world differently has involved a two-decade journey, however. Although the relevant combination of genes does not seem to be especially rare – perhaps 12% of women might have four distinct cones – many of the people that Jordan tested just didn’t seem to show any differences in their perception. But by 2010, she had found a subject who perfectly acted the part of a tetrachromat. Jordan’s “acid test” involved coloured discs showing different mixtures of pigment, such as a green made of yellow and blue. The mixtures were too subtle for most people to notice: almost all people would see the same shade of olive green, but each combination should give out a subtly different spectrum of light that would be perceptible to someone with a fourth cone. Sure enough, Jordan’s subject was able to differentiate between the different mixtures each time. “When you ask them to discriminate between the two mixtures, a tetrachromat can do it very quickly. They don’t hesitate,” says Jordan.

But what do those colours actually look like? Unfortunately, Jordan’s much-prized subject has not been available for media interviews. But once the abilities of the woman “with super-human vision” became known, many more potential tetrachromats have come forward who might be able to give us an insight.

One of those was Maureen Seaberg, a journalist and author in New York who took the genetics test after hearing Radiolab’s podcast on the subject. “I have always had polite disagreements with people about shades of colours,” she says. When clothes shopping for instance, she often finds that apparently matching tops and skirts seem to be a different shade to her, clashing horribly – even though no one else seems to notice it. Her sensitivity can sometimes be baffling to those around: when helping to restore a house, she once rejected 32 paint samples before settling on the right shade. “The beiges were too yellow and not blue enough, not cool enough; some of the almonds were too orangey,” she says – distinctions that were much to the confusion of her building contractor. Of course, that is only anecdotal evidence, but it perhaps tells us a little about the way that apparently identical shades could appear strikingly different to a tetrachromat.

Antico has a similar story. She says she has always known that her eyes saw the world differently to other people – a talent that was soon noticed by her family. “When I was a very little girl, my mother looked at me and said ‘You are going to be an artist and art instructor’.” Today, Antico has fulfilled that prediction, with her own gallery in San Diego, California, where she uses her enhanced vision to create vibrant paintings bursting with colour. Consider the following painting of a rainbow eucalyptus. “The tubes of paint were flying. The yellows, the violets, the lime greens – I was ferociously mixing on the palette trying to produce all the streams of colour in the bark,” says Antico. When compared to the real thing, the resulting canvas suggests that Antico is seeing more than the average eye.

It was when looking at one of those paintings one day that a customer suggested that Antico contact some researchers who work on tetrachromacy. The genetics test came back positive, and she began collaborating on a series of experiments with Jameson and her colleagues, including Alissa Winkler at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Jameson immediately suspected the Antico’s genes might also give her enhanced vision in dim lighting. “If you look at her pictures of dawn, she paints a lot of colours and renders them in very low lighting,” she says – conditions that normally reduce our vision to greyscale. That could just be creative licence, but Antico claims she is actually seeing the colours there in front of her. Sure enough, Jameson’s experiments have shown that the luminance of different colours is indeed altered for Antico, making them pop out in the half light.

Enhanced sensitivity is not always a blessing, though. “The grocery store is a nightmare,” she says. “It’s like a trash pile of colour coming in at every angle.” That enhanced sensitivity might explain why she finds solace in plain white surfaces. “People find that extraordinary that white is my favourite colour, but it makes sense because it is so peaceful and restful for my eyes. There is still a lot of colour in it, but it’s not hurting me.”

Not all tetrachromats have striking abilities. Jameson has found that Antico’s perception outstrips other tetrochromats who have not trained artistically. “Concetta is the perfect storm for tetrachromacy because she has a huge amount of perceptual learning experience by working with colour on a daily basis.” If that is confirmed with further research, Antico hopes that she might be able to develop a training system to help all tetrachromatic children realise their potential.

Antico’s ultimate ambitions are even greater: to help us all see the world a little differently. Anecdotally, she says that a few of her students have started to notice some of the extra shades for themselves. “It’s as if a curtain is being lifted.” Of course, without the genes, we can never achieve full tetrachromatic vision – but perhaps people like Antico can point out some differences that are just perceptible to our eyes, with training.

This is a particularly poignant issue for Antico. Thanks to the random draw of the genetic lottery, the particular gene variant that gave rise to her amazing vision has meant that her own daughter is colour blind. Perhaps one day, further research could suggest new ways to help everyone – including her daughter – to make the most of their colour vision, however limited. “What if we tetrachromats can show the way to colour for people who are less fortunate than us?” she says. “I want everyone to realise how beautiful the world is.”

Source: BBC
http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20140905-the-women-with-super-human-vision

- THE GIANTS OF NORTH AMERICA DEPARTMENT -

Ancient Giants of Delavan Lake
By Linda Godfrey

The box ad lay between a charity’s plea for donated boats and cars and an announcement of an open house for a senior apartment village. “Giant Skeletons Found at Lake Lawn,” it declared, right there on page 9 of the May 4, 2014 Walworth County Sunday. “Lake Lawn Hotel 1911.” The ad continued: “In 1911 the Phillips brothers uncovered skeletons that ranged from 7 to 9 feet! Author L.A. Marzulli is offering a $500 reward for photographs of the dig site showing the skeletons, at the Lake Lawn Hotel.”

The mention of ancient, giant skeletons in my local paper stopped me cold. I knew that a number of such remains had long ago been disinterred from one or more of the 100-plus ancient conical and effigy mounds built along the shores of Delavan Lake, Wisconsin. This was before the structures were protected by law as sacred and historic treasures. Now known as the Lake Lawn Lodge and Golf Course, the popular resort is only about a 15-minute drive from my home. I’ve been there many times and have researched the mounds and skeletons for the “Ancient Mysteries” section of Weird Wisconsin. But I’d never found any photos of the dig site, nor even a reference to such photos. None of the original, 1911 newspaper stories on the discovery had provided illustrations. If such photos existed, I was very eager to see them.

The Delavan Lake mounds were one of the largest and most important groups of ancient earthworks in S.E. Wisconsin. They included both cone-shaped mounds similar to those found across much of the country, and the rarer animal-shaped effigy mounds. Archeologists often date cone-shaped mounds to the Early to Middle Woodland cultures that flourished in Wisconsin from about 500 BC to 500 AD. The animal-shaped effigy mounds are thought to have been built by a later culture known as the Late Woodland between approximately 500 AD and 1200 AD. (These dates and identifications are still under study and involve complex interactions between various prehistoric peoples; I recommend the book Indian Mounds of Wisconsin by Robert Birmingham and Leslie Eisenberg for a more thorough treatment.)

Unfortunately, great numbers many of both types of these mounds were leveled by early settlers in order to clear the land for farming, houses, and even – from 1850 until almost the turn of that century on Delavan Lake – winter quarters for members of the Mabie’s Circus and Menagerie, complete with a ring barn for training horses. Jeremiah Mabie owned the lakeside part of the property, and after he died in 1867 his widow remarried.  Anna Mary Mabie Phillips and her second husband, Ernest Field Phillips, built the original Lake Lawn Hotel on that beautiful shore in 1883.

The grounds still contained many of the original mounds at that time, but treasure seekers had opened various of them without finding much. In early March, 1911, the couple’s two sons, Ernest and Chester Phillips, decided to see for themselves whether the conical mounds might indeed contain burials and artifacts.

They chose a 40-foot-diameter mound behind the hotel’s horse barn, and soon uncovered a burial chamber six feet below the top of the three-foot high mound. The chamber measured about 7 by 9 feet, and its floor was made of carefully layered gravel, white sand and blue clay. There was evidence that the top of the chamber had been constructed of a one-foot thick layer of dirt topped with fired clay.  To the excitement of the Phillips brothers, this mound did indeed contain burials: fourteen of them, including several with fractured and otherwise damaged skulls that indicated a violent death. Most of the bodies had been interred lying on their backs with their knees flexed and arms bent upwards. But two were buried in a sitting position. The only artifacts found (and these were in the top of the mound, not the chamber) were a piece of flint, an 8-inch sandstone “pebble,” and a 6-inch red stone. Ernest Phillips submitted a full report of the findings to the Wisconsin Archaeological Society on the 21st of that month.

A little over a year later, in 1912, the Phillips brothers decided to dig into another, similar mound in the same area as the first. This burial contained one skeleton in a sitting posture, a female and small child lying next to it, and one other adult. The remains of a possible clamshell necklace was found beneath the female burial. According to a later recap in the December, 1926 issue of The Wisconsin Archaeologist, the skulls of these burials all had “low, flattened foreheads.” But that’s not all.

This second mound dig made national news very soon after its discovery. On May 4, 1912, the New York Times carried an article from a May 3, Madison, Wisconsin news article titled, “Strange Skeletons Found.” The article ventured to state that the skeletons indicated “that a heretofore unknown race of men once inhabited Southern Wisconsin.” (The article then seems to combine the previously uncovered skeletons with the four that had just been found to arrive at a total of 18, which it describes without discrimination between the two mounds):

“The heads, presumably those of men, are much larger than the heads of any race which inhabit America today. From directly over the eye sockets, the head slopes straight back and the nasal bones protrude far above the cheek bones. The jaw bones are long and pointed, bearing a minute resemblance to the head of the monkey. The teeth in the front of the jaw are regular molars. There were also found in the mounds the skeletons, presumably of women, which had smaller heads, but were similar in facial characteristics.”

The Delavan Republican said, “The skeletons appear to be those of warriors of powerful frame and immense size when compared with people of this day and age.” The Delavan Enterprise noted that “the cranium of one of [the] ancient warriors was of unusual size, and the other bones found would indicate that they were a race of giants.” The paper didn’t note the exact height of these people, but similar skeletons estimated to be of the same time period from around Wisconsin and the U.S. have noted their heights at between seven and nine feet tall. Author Jim Brandon mentioned a few of these in his 1983 book, The Rebirth of Pan. Beside the Delavan Lake discoveries, Brandon included finds such as:

    Brewersville Indiana, 1879, skeleton measuring 9 feet, 8 inches taken from a mound
    Kanawha County, W. Virginia, 1844, skeleton seven and one half feet long taken from a mound chamber
    Fox Lake, Illinois, (about 15 miles south of the WI/IL border) 1877 contained a skull similar to those described at the 2nd
    Delavan dig: “The large projecting eye-brows, deep set eye sockets, the low, receding forehead and the long-narrow and flat        shape of the crown rendered it a very animal-looking skull.”

(More examples may be found online on a blog page titled Giant Human Skeletons at http://gianthumanskeletons.blogspot.com/p/giant-skeletons-with-double-rows-of.html)

So who were these super-sized people with sloping heads and jutting chins? They probably weren’t the Algonquian, Winnebago, Sac and Fox people encountered by European settlers in the late 1700s and early 1800s, who were mostly under six feet tall and lacked the exotic skull features of those buried in the two mounds. Estimates of the age of the mounds and bones ranged as far back as 2000 years, and most traditional anthropologists would align these large people with the mound-building groups dubbed the Adena and Hopewell.

The Adena people had some rather unique and recognizable features, according to an article in March, 1985 FATE Magazine by Jim Miles. He quotes Carnegie Museum curator Don W. Dragoo to note that the Adena were distinguished both by body heights over six feet in height with “massiveness of the bones [that] indicates powerfully built individuals,” and by “a massive protruding chin.” Dragoo’s study was based on almost 100 skeletons found in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia.

BeaverDamDig 001Some similar individuals may have been buried just north of Milwaukee and other points around Wisconsin. Beaver Dam’s terrific Dodge County Historical Society Museum displays photos from excavations made a few miles east of town in their Nitschke Mound Park. The skeletons in these photos don’t appear unusual. However, on a recent visit some friends and I were allowed to look through the files, where I found an old newspaper clipping of a burial dig from The Milwaukee Journal, date unknown. This one (see scan, left, of the copy the museum made for me of the newspaper clip) revealed a skeleton with a truly strange, enlarged and weirdly shaped skull that was unearthed in Kletzsch Park along the Milwaukee River, probably in the 1930s. The photo includes the silhouette of a director of anthropology at the Milwaukee Public Museum, W.H. McKern.

Researchers have proposed many theories as to the origins of these large people. Author Marzulli believes that some of these skeletons may have belonged to a dispersed remnant of the people referred to in the Old Testament chapter 6 (verses 1-4) of Genesis as the Nephilim – offspring of the “Sons of god and daughters of men.” One key element Marzulli points to is that so many of these skulls feature cranial elongations and oddities that cannot be explained by normal variations of human physiology nor by  skull-flattening practices some native peoples employed to reshape their infant children’s skulls. These anomalous skulls with huge and weirdly shaped craniums are widespread throughout the Americas, with a particularly large number found in Peru.

Some researchers believe the skeletons are those of extraterrestrial aliens or even Bigfoot, and I have to admit that the description of those massive skulls with giant eye sockets and flattened foreheads does remind me of witness descriptions of Sasquatch. Others believe that the Sasquatch are the remnants of the Nephilim, and that the Nephilim were extraterrestrials.

The traditional anthropologist’s answer, usually, is that these were simply very robust indigenous people or individuals with either naturally inherited stature or growth hormone problems. Various medical conditions that contribute to giantism do exist today. Robert Wadlow of Alton, Illinois who grew to a height of 8 feet, 11 ½ inches, needed a 10-foot casket after he died in 1940 at age 22. But photos of Wadlow show him with a very normally (according to our own Western, modern standards) shaped head.

It seems these skeletons represent a true mystery.

I called the Delavan Historical Society to see if by chance they had some shots of the digs in their collection, thinking that if they did, they might want to go collect the reward. Small-town historical societies can always use extra funds. They did know about the offer – Marzulli had already visited them in person – but alas, they had found nothing for him. One of the staffers gave me the name and phone number of the elderly daughter of a former owner of the property back in the mid-20th Century, however, on the chance that such photos may have been handed down within her family. The very kind lady wasn’t sure, but invited me to have a look through her father’s old family photo albums. That visit was a story in itself, but yielded no dig photos.

It wouldn’t surprise me if nothing conclusive about these mounds ever comes to light. For some reason, any evidence of  the remains of anomalous human beings seem to disappear into a deep, black hole of obfuscation once any sort of established institution gets access to them. Even in 1983, Jim Brandon said of the anomalous bones found in ancient North American mounds: “As soon as mound excavations became widespread in the 19th Century, these reports began to circulate. It is doubtful, however, if any topic has been more relentlessly suppressed.”

Part of the reason for that, of course, is the completely understandable outrage that Native Americans feel at seeing burials sacred to them dug up and displayed for all to see. Almost all museums and other institutions that have harbored remains of Native Americans have by now repatriated their collections to the appropriate tribal entities. But beyond that, there seems to be an extra wall of silence regarding the existence of these huge skeletons with the unusual skulls.

I do know, thanks to a 2004 interview I conducted with the late Delavan historian, Gordon Yadon, that two of the largest Delavan Lake skeletons were removed from the mound and taken to a house the Phillips brothers owned in town. The brothers, Yadon told me, coated the bones with shellac to preserve them. After both brothers died, their belongings were auctioned off but the skeletons weren’t part of the sale, said Yadon. No one knows where they went. Or if anyone does, they aren’t talking. I presume any alleged photos disappeared with the skeletons.

Some later excavations were made of a turtle mound and a linear mound at the resort in November, 1955, by representatives of the Campus Archaeological Society of the University of Chicago.  This dig was duly photographed and recorded, and from what I could discover revealed only the more usual contents of Woodland-era burials, including a few skeletons “bundled” in the traditional manner of many Native American cultures.

It’s possible that some of the remaining mounds still hide secrets from prying, modern eyes, and if so they will remain hidden thanks to our present laws governing preservation of such sites. If it’s any comfort, I’m sure that’s what their makers intended.

Sources:

“Startling and Important Discovery,” The Delavan Republican, March 23, 1911, p. 1.

“Scene of Old Battle,” The Delavan Enterprise, March 23, 1911, p. 1.

“Strange Skeletons Found,” The New York Times, May 4, 1912.

“The Legend of Lake Lawn Lodge,” 2001 Visitor Information Guide, (publisher uncertain) pp. 40-41.

“The Legend of Lake Lawn Lodge, Delavan, Wisconsin,” Ruby Reader, resort pamphlet citing the Walworth County Historical Society

“Phillips Brothers Excavated Indian Mounds,” W. Gordon Yadon, Delavan Enterprise, Jan. 22, 2004.

Jim Brandon, The Rebirth of Pan; Hidden Faces of the American Earth Spirit, Dunlap, Ill.: Firebird Press, 1983, p. 243-246.

Birmingham and Eisenberg, Indian Mounds of Wisconsin, Madison, Wis.: The University Press, 2000.

Source: Linda Godfrey Blog
http://lindagodfrey.com/2014/10/03/ancient-giants-of-delavan-lake/


- GHOSTLY TALES IN YOUR TOWN DEPARTMENT -

Spooky Sights, Sounds

Glenn Wershing says he believed his house in New Jersey was haunted the moment he moved in with his wife and three children in 1961.

"On the third floor, we would hear footsteps going from the back of the house to the front of the house, then a big thump," Mr. Wershing explains. "I think I must have run upstairs a hundred times with a flashlight to see who or what was there, but I never found anything."
   
Mr. Wershing, 76, and his wife, Jackie Wershing, 71, live in the Thomas P. Hunt house, a three-story farmhouse built in 1835 that runs along Bear Creek, which adjoins the property.
   
The couple has noted numerous incidents that suggest the lingering presence of a ghost or some unearthly being. One Christmas, for example, Mrs. Wershing took a photo of her three children around the living-room Christmas tree. When the photo was developed, it appeared that the dismal figures of three other children — in shadowy form — were present, as well.
   
The couple is among the 40 percent of Americans who believe that a place can be haunted. According to a Gallup poll in 2001, this percentage is up from about 29 percent 10 years earlier.
   
"You never know when these weird things will start happening, but the change in seasons is usually a good indication" Mrs. Wershing said. "It was bitter cold one night, and I awoke at about five in the morning. There, standing in front of Glenn's dresser was a lady with extremely long hair, wearing a nightgown of some sort. I just barely opened my eyelids, straining to try and see a face, but absolutely nothing was reflected in our bedroom mirror."
    
Mr. Wershing suggests that the people who lived in the house prior to them just weren't ready to go yet: "It wasn't like there was a murder here or anything like that. Years ago, it was commonplace for people to die in their homes. I've said I don't believe in ghosts, but something is happening in this house."
   
The Wershing household is one of dozens of eerie phenomena compiled in "Weird U.S.: Your Travel Guide to America's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets." The new book collects tales of the unexplained from across the country — including such Washington-area legends as the Goatman and "Crybaby Bridge."
   
Joe Nickell, investigative columnist for the Skeptical Inquirer, says this belief in the paranormal taps into the hopes and fears of the American people.
   
"Psychic power lets us look into the future, aliens and UFOs reassure us that we are not alone in this universe, and ghosts give us the message that there's something to look forward to after death," Mr. Nickell said. "There's no objective or scientific evidence for ghosts. I've come to believe that it's not the places that are haunted. It's the minds of the people."
    
Haunted sites like the Martha Washington Inn in Abingdon, Va., however, continue to attract ghost-believing visitors each year, asking about the haunted history of the Inn, and the supposed ghost of a young nurse named Beth who haunts the Inn's premises. Pete Sheffey, a bellman at the inn, claims to have seen a lot of strange things throughout his 40 years of employment there.
    
"Our guests sometimes hear the sound of violins coming from the upper floors, but there is no one playing," said Mr. Sheffey, 63. "This is the ghost of Beth, who lived here during the Civil War, when the inn was a hospital. Last week, one guest saw [Beth's] feet moving down the hall ... then, they just vanished right in front of her. Some guests don't believe in the ghost stuff when they arrive, but by the time they leave, they do."
   
D.C. resident Steve Cupo, 50, said he had his own personal encounter with a ghost sighting. Mr. Cupo was a lead actor in "Give My Regards to Broadway" at the Circuit 21 Dinner Theatre in Rock Island, Ill., in 1981 when he saw the ghost of a deceased janitor sitting in the balcony.
   
"It was during rehearsal, and I had just run up to a very high platform on the stage," Mr. Cupo said. "We had to stop the performance for some reason, and as I was glancing around the auditorium, I saw a strange Portuguese man in overalls sitting in the balcony. I looked away for a minute, but as soon as I looked back, he was gone. One week later, people were talking about this ghost of a Portuguese janitor, who accidentally killed himself in the theatre in 1922, and now he haunts the place."
   
"Weird U.S." also highlights stories of "bizarre beasts," including the infamous Goatman of Prince George's County.
   
The Goatman is described as a half-man, half-goat creature, whom local lore blames for attacking cars left near the road and throwing dogs off Interstate 495 overpasses near secluded areas.
   
Since the late 1950s, the Goatman has left his mark on the front page of two issues of the Prince George's County News. The Nov. 10, 1971, edition carried a front-page banner declaring "Residents Fear Goatman Lives: Dog Found Decapitated in Old Bowie" with a photo of the remains of the mutilated pet. The canine victim's owners reportedly had heard strange noises and saw an "animal-like creature" moving in the dark right before the dog disappeared.
   
According to some area residents, the Goatman lives near a notorious Prince George's County site, Crybaby Bridge in Upper Marlboro.
   
At Crybaby Bridge, passing motorists say they have heard either the shrill cry of an infant ghost — local legend says it's the spirit of a baby who was thrown over the bridge by her ashamed, murderous mother — or the Goatman, stealthily awaiting his next victim.
   
Mark Moran, co-author of "Weird U.S.," said he and co-author Mark Sceurman took about a year to travel nationwide to investigate and research these, and many other, haunted places nationwide, many of which were "tips" from readers. After they published "Weird NJ" — a compilation of spooky tales from New Jersey — in 2003, the authors began receiving letters from across the country, telling them strange tales from their home states.
    
"What we do is listen to what people tell us is weird about their own hometown," Mr. Moran said. "I don't know if these stories are fact or fiction, but what I do believe is that the people who tell us their story truly believe it."

Source: The Washington Times
http://washingtontimes.com/culture/20041026-115155-2248r.htm 

- ANCIENT TECHNOLOGIES DEPARTMENT -

Ancient Egypt Illuminated by Electricity?
By Paul Darin

Today, we take for granted nightly city skylines, streetlights, and the overall power that drives our modern convenience. But, could the wise-men of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia have had knowledge of electricity, even electric illumination, or even electric-based technology? Within the framework of some archaeological evidence, the answer seems affirmative.

The most widely cited evidence that the ancient Egyptians used electricity is a relief beneath the Temple of Hathor at Dendera, Egypt that depicts figures standing around a large light-bulb-like object.

An Ancient Light Bulb?

The socket is represented by what appears to be a lotus flower with a stem that runs like a cable along the bottom of the “device.” Inside the “bulb” is a snake-like line winding its way out of the lotus flower “socket.” According to supporters of the hypothesis that this depicts an electrical light, such as Erich Von Däniken who wrote “Chariot of the Gods,” the snake represents the filament of the bulb.

Von Däniken created a working model of the bulb in the laboratory which works, emitting an eerie, purplish light. He used the same measurements, including two metal beams that look like arms stretched into the big end of the bulb, and a wire connecting those beams with the “socket” at the other end.

But where did the power come from to light the bulb in ancient Egypt?

An Ancient Battery?

An artifact found a ways away from Egypt, outside of modern-day Baghdad, shows some electricity production was possible in the Middle East thousands of years ago. This artifact is known as the Baghdad Battery.

The Baghdad Battery is simple in comparison with today’s batteries. It consists of a clay jar with a stopper made of asphalt. Through the stopper is an iron rod surrounded by a copper cylinder. It is believed that the jar would have been filled with a common acidic substance such as vinegar that would allow it to produce about 1.1 volts of electricity. Replicas of the battery have shown it works.

1.1 volts may not seem like much, but if you string several of these batteries together, the voltage increases. The battery was dated from 250 B.C. to 250 A.D. The current belief is that these batteries were used in early electroplating (bonding a layer of one type of metal onto the surface of another).

These batteries aren’t the only theoretical power source. Some claim that one of the most iconic structures in Egypt is in fact the most misunderstood device on the planet. Specifically, supporters of the ancient Egyptian electricity hypothesis say the Great Pyramid of Giza was actually used as a power plant.

An Ancient Power Plant?
 
This idea was first championed by author and researcher Christopher Dunn in his books “The Giza Power Plant” and “Lost Technologies of Ancient Egypt.”

Dunn said the “Kings Chamber” located in the heart of the Great Pyramid was once the central power generating apparatus of the super structure. It is constructed primarily of pink granite, a material rich in micro-quartz-crystals.

In fact, the Great Pyramid is mostly granite, and granite is made up of many tiny quartz crystals that, when exposed to pressure and/or energy vibrations, generate electricity. This is known in the scientific community as the piezoelectric effect. This effect is used in many modern technologies, such as loud speakers, signal transducers, and it has some applications in the automotive industry.

According to Dunn and other supporters of this theory, the granite sarcophagus in the King’s Chamber (also intricately carved in solid pink granite) could have been instrumental in transmuting the low-frequency vibrations emitted by the earth into electrical energy. Additionally, Dunn said, the supporting beams in the ceiling of the king’s chamber all seem to have been precisely tuned, or cut to size, to perfectly resonate with this frequency.

Source: Epoch Times
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/996220-ancient-egypt-illuminated-by-electricity/h 
- DENIZENS OF THE DEEP DEPARTMENT -

Meet Issie, Japan’s Very Own Loch Ness Monster
By Jessica Kozuka

You may have thought that the Loch Ness Monster had cornered the market on fresh-water cryptids, but Japan has one of its own mythical lake beasts. There may be a monster lurking in the depths of Kyushu’s Lake Ikeda, a monster who goes by the terrifying name of… Issie-kun.

Lake Ikeda, at just 15 km around and with a maximum depth of 233 meters, is still the largest lake in Kyushu, which just goes to show that there are not that many lakes in Kyushu. It’s a caldera lake, meaning it doesn’t connect to the ocean and depends mostly on precipitation to maintain water levels.

The lake is supposedly also the home of a huge saurian creature called Issie, or Issie-kun, to give him the diminutive male suffix the city seems to prefer. Issie was first spotted by a family in 1978. Twenty witnesses reported seeing some black humps several meters in length moving through the water. Later that same year, a man named Toshiaki Matsuhara caught the creature on film.

Yutaka Kawaji and Hideo Kawaji may share the same surname, but they also share the same phenomenal experience. You see, they are both witnesses to the Japanese lake cryptid know as Issie, said to inhabit the depths of Lake Ikeda in Japan.

What is remarkable is that they both saw the creature when they were elementary school students and also later in life. In fact, Yutaka Kawaji actually witnessed the creature on three occasions and two of the sightings occurred in the same year. In the spring of 1978 Yutaka saw the creature from a garden. Details of this sighting are very sketchy and we know little else than that he saw an unknown creature in the lake.

It is the sighting on September 3, 1978 that is the best known sighting in the history of the Lake Ikeda enigma. This sighting was not witnessed by just a handful of people but by 20 people, virtually all related to Yutaka Kawaji.

Kawaji’s children Hiroto, Mutsumi and Tomoko were playing by the lakeshore when they noticed two humps belonging to a large black creature gilding through the waters of the lake which is set in the caldera of an extinct volcano. These were big humps measuring five metres (16.26 feet long) and standing some 60 centimetres (two feet) out of the water. The children alerted the adults in the party to the presence of the creature and before anyone had time to breathe, Yukata Kawaji leapt aboard a motorboat and pursued the creature as it crossed the lake at a fair clip.

Kawaji was unable to catch up with the creature but during a sighting that lasted three to four minutes, he was able to see the humps twice for about 20 seconds. Conditions on the lake were mirror smooth with no wind or waves to speak of. The witnesses agreed that the only activity on the lake came from the immediate area where the cryptid had made it appearance.

Yutaka Kawaji was so enthralled by his sighting that he purchased a camera with a 135 millimetre lens in the hope that some day he would be able to photograph the creature. Kawaji has never seen the creature again, but as chance would have it, the mystery denizen of Lake Ikeda was photographed on December 16, that year and that honour would fall to Toshiaki Matsuhara. Matsuhara was interested in the folklore and legends of the lake, and this included the legend of Issie.

It was one thirty in the afternoon that day when Matsuhara saw a whirlpool suddenly appear in the middle of the lake. For five minutes he watched it through a 50X telescope as it moved northward for five minutes before it disappeared.

While scanning the lake in the aftermath of his initial sighting Matsuhara’s attention was drawn to an object moving in the lake which was somewhat veiled by waves surrounding it. He quickly took a series of photographs and in one of them what appear to be two humps with spinal ridges can be seen.

By this time the tourism department of the nearby city of Ibusuki had offered a reward of 100,000 Yen ($670) to anyone who could produce a photo of  Issie. Matsuhara submitted his photo for their consideration and the tourism department officials were impressed enough to award Matsuhara the prize money. When the photos were published, they struck a chord in the recollection of Yutaka Kawaji who promptly contacted the tourism department to say the Matsuhara had photographed the creature he had seen three months earlier and that it was also in the exact same location off a local landmark known as the Couple’s Rock.

Incredibly Matsuhara is alleged to have photographed the creature on four more occasions, but few have seen these photos and they have not been submitted for serious scrutiny.

Lake Ikeda is a remarkable place as it receives its water from rain and subsurface water sources. There no rivers or streams that flow into the lake. This is quite problematic in that it begs the question: How did a creature the size of Issie get into the lake? The only possible way it did so is to have entered through a subsurface opening, but the question is: from where?

The Lake is situated on the Satsuma Peninsula that is bordered on one side by the Sea of Japan and on the other by the Gulf of Kagoshima. It is quite a distance from the sea and because the lake is also above sea level, it is highly unlikely that it came from the ocean. At some stage in its history large Malaysian eels were introduced to the lake and these fish are farmed commercially on the lakeshore. I thought they might make a good candidate for Issie sightings , but I discovered that the largest eel ever seen in the lake – incidentally in the same area where Matsuhara and Kawaji had their sightings – was just 1.7 metres at most.

This is far too small to be even one of the five meter humps. Even the large snapping turtle that has been photographed in the lake is far too small to account for the large creature that many insists is Issie.

In 1991 a videotape of Issie was made and shown on the Nippon TV special World’s Mysterious Phenomena.

Since then, the tourism authorities have been promoting the Issie story to attract visitors to the region. There is even a mythology to explain Issie’s creation. In the story, a white mare lived on the shores of the lake with her foal. When the foal was captured by samurai, the white mare leapt into the lake in despair, transforming into a huge water creature. She surfaces now and then to look for her child. There is no explanation as to why Issie is a female in the story, but the monster is generally considered male. Another mystery!

On a completely unrelated note, Lake Ikeda is home to giant eels, some of the largest in the world. They can grow to several meters in length. I’m sure the resemblance to Issie is purely coincidental.

Source: Rocket News
http://en.rocketnews24.com/2014/09/30/meet-issie-japans-very-own-loch-ness-monster/

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