Top 10 Bizarre & Controversial Archeological Discoveries

By | May 21, 2010

hornedhumanskullsDiscovered: 1880s

(left) Sayre is a borough in Bradford County, Pennsylvania, 59 miles northwest of Scranton. The exact year is not clear, but during the 1880s a large burial mound was discovered in Sayre. It was reported that a group of Americans uncovered several strange human skulls and bones. The skeletons belonged to anatomically normal men with the exception of bony projections located about two inches above the eyebrows. It appeared that the skulls had horns. The bones were characterized as giant, as they were representative of people over seven feet tall. Scientists estimated that the bodies had been buried around A.D. 1200. The archeological discovery was made by a reputable group of antiquarians, including Dr. G.P. Donehoo, the Pennsylvania state dignitary of the Presbyterian Church; A.B. Skinner, of the American Investigating Museum; and W.K.Morehead, of Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts.

It was not the first time that gigantic horned skulls have been unearthed in North America. During the 19th century, similar skulls were discovered near Wellsville, New York and in a mining village close to El Paso, Texas. At one time in history, human horns were used as signs of kingship. Alexander the Great was depicted with horns on some of his coins. In Moses’ time, horns were a symbol of authority and power. Many gods, including Yahweh, have been depicted with horns. According to historical accounts, the Sayre bones were allegedly sent to the American Investigating Museum in Philadelphia. However, the artifacts were stolen and never seen again. Apparent pictures of the skulls do exist, but many people claim the discovery to be a hoax. Many websites suggest that the objects are of extraterrestrial origin.

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(right) There are numerous accounts of human beings with horns.  Unfortunately, many of them are poorly documented and even worse, the possession of the artefacts has been mismanaged to the extent that the records become very questionable.  Still, there is definitively a powerful socio-genetic memory of human-like creatures with horns and they are usually depicted as evil or at the very least, powerful and destructive. Satan is the most obvious example but many demons, giants, biblical creatures, shamans, witch doctors, the Minotaur and (possibly) mythical creatures such as dragons all had horns.  The unicorn is the exception … although it is also said to have a fascination with young virgins which is a bit odd when you think about it.  The main source of the belief in real horned skulls comes from an entry in the book, Mysteries of the Unexplained published by Readers Digest in the 1990’s.  The section refers to the discovery of a number of skulls that clearly had horns projecting above their eyebrows.  Basically, the skulls were supposed to have been found by reputable people in a burial mound in Sayre, Bradford County, Pennsylvania, in 1880.  Unfortunately, the original story was exaggerated by the press who confused a statement about individuals that had been buried with deer horns.  It was 1916 after all.


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