The Mysterious Blonde Giants Of Catalina Island: Skeletons Discovered By Ralph Glidden

In all cultures around the world, there have long been legends about giants living among us, about colossal creatures that our ancestors saw and even worshiped as gods. But these creatures seem to have been lost in time and are now considered just myths.
Is there any chance that a race of giants actually existed among humans at some point? There have been many theories and even supposed evidence about this, which from time to time have been dug out of the ground in the form of bones or even complete skeletons of giants. True, none of these skeletons have survived to this day for one reason or another or were hidden somewhere in the museum basements. One such case is of the mysterious blonde giants of Catalina Island

One of the most sensational claims of its time was made on a tiny island off the coast of California. It seems that once upon a time people of unusually tall stature lived on it. Off the coast of the US state of California, about 22 miles southwest of Los Angeles, is the islet of Santa Catalina, also simply called Catalina. The 22-by-8-mile island is part of the Channel Islands archipelago and is part of Los Angeles County and has a rather colorful history.

Originally inhabited by the Gabrielino (Tongwa) Indian people around 7000 BC, the island was captured by Spain in 1542, later taken over by Mexico and then the United States. Catalina Island was long used as a base for various nefarious activities, including smugglers and otter poachers until it was eventually turned into a tourist resort by tycoon William Wrigley Jr. in the 1920s.

Discovery Of The Giants Of Catalina Island

In 1896, the Glidden family came here with their teenage son Ralph. Initially, Ralph Glidden was interested in carpentry, but then his interest in Native American artifacts began to grow. He began looking for remains of ancient Indian culture on the island, including Indian burials. After he accidentally discovered an ancient Indian skull just by bumping into a piece of bone in the sands, he became obsessed with this activity. He soon became an amateur archaeologist who began excavating Indian burials on Catalina from 1919 to 1928.

During these excavations, he allegedly discovered 800 secret Indian burials and many Indian artifacts and relics, as well as thousands of bones. These bones and artifacts were mainly sold by Ralph Glidden to various museums and collectors

When William Wrigley Jr. bought the island in the 1920s, he banned the sale of bones and artifacts, declaring them the exclusive property of the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. However, the Heye Foundation, to which Glidden had previously sold a large number of such remains and relics, contracted the museum to carry out all excavations on Catalina Island, and it was able to take first place in this activity, which allowed Glidden to continue excavation without restrictions.

Unfortunately for Glidden, in 1924 the Heye Foundation cut off funding for the excavation, and he was forced to work alone, opening his own museum of his finds in the city of Avalon on Catalina Island, which he called the “Catalina Museum of the Island Indians”.

There he showed his discoveries to anyone who was willing to pay to enter.  The whole museum was rather gloomy, it exhibited numerous Native American skeletons and it looked creepy, but it attracted many curious people. 

However, Glidden became famous in history not as the owner of the museum with the skeletons of the Indians, but as the one who declared that giants lived on Catalina in ancient times. In particular, he stated that during his excavations he came across several skeletons (in different parts of the island) that were much taller than normal people.

According to him, these skeletons belonged to people ranging in height from 7 feet (210 cm) to 9 feet (270 cm) in height. Moreover, Glidden got information from somewhere that these giants were fair-haired and blue-eyed people.  Such a statement, of course, aroused widespread media interest and the following was written in one of the issues of The Ogden Standard-Examiner on November 10, 1929:

“He (Glidden) claims irrefutable proof that a light-skinned, blonde-haired and very intelligent race of great stature lived on Catalina Island, off the southwest coast of California, perhaps three thousand years ago. And that his excavations have uncovered a huge cache of skeletons, domestic utensils, urns, wampums (shell beads), etc. – a completely unusual class of Indian things.  He found the skeleton of a young girl, apparently of high rank, in a large burial urn surrounded by the skeletons of sixty-four children, and over three thousand other skeletons were found in various parts of the island, almost all males, averaging 7 feet in height, one – seven feet eight inches from head to ankle, and the other is a whopping 9 feet 2 inches in height. “

Oddly enough, Glidden’s statement about the discovery of the skeletons of giants was not the only and not the first in the area of ​​the Channel Islands. There is information that back in 1913, a German doctor named A. Furstenan discovered on Catalina Island a human skeleton 8 feet (240 cm) tall, which was found among unusual artifacts, including a flat stone with strange unrecognizable symbols. 
This particular skeleton was allegedly found in hard black sand in the Gulf of Avalon and reportedly mostly disintegrated when brought to the surface and exposed to the air. Only the skull, jaw, and foot were left of it.  There has also been a later report of excavations on the nearby island of Santa Rosa, which in 1959 allegedly unearthed several 7-foot-tall skeletons with skulls painted red, double rows of teeth, and 6 toes and toes instead of five.

…  Another of the Channel Islands, San Nicholas Island, was also where numerous above-average human remains were found, believed to have belonged to a mysterious race other than the local Indian group, which was of quite normal human height. Considering that many of the alleged giant skeletons of Catalina Island were alleged to have been buried in a ceremonial form in elaborate urns, Glidden suggested that the locals worshiped them as gods. 

Giants Of Catalina Island
The photo below allegedly captures Ralph Glidden with one of the giant skeletons he found.

Of course, these findings of his were received with open skepticism and even contempt from the main scientific archaeological community. Scientists and academics have called it Glidden’s last-ditch effort and publicity stunt to find funding for new excavations. 
Therefore, not a single professional archaeologist wanted to go to Catalina Island at all to at least just look at the skeletons. Some locals have also expressed doubts about the finds, such as one 89-year-old elderly resident of Avalon and local historian named Jean Hill:

“It (the museum) was scary, very scary. Bones were piled up everywhere. There was a light in one skull. Over the years, I began to doubt a lot about Ralph Glidden. I once found several receipts indicating that he had bought skeletons in a gift shop. on Broadway in Los Angeles.  Earlier, fake archaeological sites were also found on the northern tip of the island, which were believed to be Ralph’s. Was he a crook? Well, that’s what it was said about him. “

One of the main problems with Glidden’s fantastic discoveries is that there is very little hard evidence that everything he said was true. There have been those who have claimed over the years that they have personally seen Glidden’s skeletons, but these stories are circumstantial at best. 

Some of the bones from the Glidden collection appear to have been shipped to the University of California and the Smithsonian Institution, but these institutions have repeatedly denied having such specimens in their collection when asked about it. 
However, it has been speculated that they are indeed there, locked up in top-secret vaults along with field reports and photographs. Whether this is true or not, none of the alleged skeletons have ever been officially presented as evidence, and it is unclear what happened to all of these alleged remains.

You might also think that Glidden took a lot of photographs during his work, but in reality, there are very few of them. Glidden himself justified this by the fact that he had carelessly kept the pictures, and had lost some of them altogether. 

The most significant discovery in recent years was a dusty box found at the back of the Catalina Island Museum archive in 2012, which contained numerous documents written by Glidden and photographs of some ancient relics and indigenous remains, including some that supposedly showed giant skeletons.
However, both documents and photos contain very little information to give them any context.  Although the veracity of the photographs of the Glidden giants is most often disputed, one paranormal researcher named L. Marzulli claimed that a detailed analysis of one of the photographs showed that the depicted skeleton appeared to be real and that it would have been 8 and a half feet high in life.

However, others claim the photo is fake.  Marzulli also said that 6 fingers are clearly visible on one of the giant skeletons.

Giants Of Catalina Island

While there is understandable skepticism about Glidden’s findings, there are those who have used his alleged discoveries to support their theories, notably Hollow Earth conspiracy theorists who believe in the existence of another world within our planet that can be accessed through several portals located around the world. 
At the time of Glidden’s discoveries, Hollow Earth theorists speculated that one of these portals might be located on Catalina Island and that it was the local giants that were tasked with guarding the gate. This idea was so pervasive that several expeditions to Catalina were undertaken by so-called “voidlands” in the 1920s, but it is not known what, if anything, they found.

Giants Of Catalina Island

At the end of his life, Glidden himself sold his entire collection of artifacts and skeletons to someone for only 5 thousand dollars in 1962, and in 1967 he died at the age of 87.  It is possible that when he died, he took with him many of the secrets of his work and possible answers to the mysteries surrounding him. We can only guess how much truth there is.  Was Glidden just a hoaxer who only cared about money? Or did he actually make what would become one of the most important archaeological discoveries of all time if proven to be true? Chances are, we’ll never know for sure.

What do you think of the Mysterious Blonde Giants Of Catalina Island?


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