1. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Often quoted out of context as evidence that a race of giants recently lived in North America, is this quote from Lincoln:
    For example, it occupies pride of place as the epigraph of Richard Dewhurst's book: The Ancient Giants Who Ruled America:

    It is variously reported as being from a speech he gave, or even something he said before congress. However the actual quote simply comes from some unfinished rambling notes that that Lincoln wrote after visiting Niagara, and the quote about "extinct giants" may simply be about mammoths. Here's the full quote in context
    The note on this from the Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln say:
    Example misleading usages:


    But did Lincoln actually mean humanoid giants? Arguably so, as Geoffrey Sea discusses:
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  2. Hevach

    Hevach Senior Member

    If we assume, just for argument, he was talking about humanoid giants and not mastodons, my question then is, "Uh... Yeah, so?"

    Lincoln wasn't there to see them, and his background was in law and literature, not archaeology or anthropology. If he were talking about humanoid gaints, it would be in the same biblical context that he talked about creators and angels. From a position of belief, maybe even piety, but not from a position of knowledge or authority. He would not have been creating a new source, just citing the existing one, so he added nothing to the body of evidence.
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  3. Jason

    Jason Senior Member

    Agreed, but I think the point the OP is illustrating is that how a simple quote from over a century ago has given rise to the ideology that is giants who lived among the "mounds". Its funny because my wife is from the Philippines and in their culture they have strong beliefs about giants. Chocolate Hills in the Philippines is known to locals as a legend;

    I guess there's something "mystical" about mounds and giants in every culture
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
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  4. NoParty

    NoParty Senior Member

    Just great...now Snopes will have to debunk 500 paranoid "Two Giants Are Throwing Stones & Sand" e-mails next week...
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
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  5. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    My read was that he was referring to Indians in some way.
    either as in the phrase "giants of industry" (ie warriors) or "stand on the shoulder of giants" type thing. although I don't know if the word 'giant' was used in such a way back then.

    Or more poetically, since the indian burial mounds were giant in size vs a single grave, one could 'imagine' a giant person in them. ??
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  6. Jason

    Jason Senior Member

    I didn't get that in the first read, must be my lack in literary acuity. But you're right I can see the analogy now..
  7. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    well by Lincolns time everyone knew what filled the mounds of America was Indian bones. and since he mentioned everyone and their brother, seems odd he's leave out the Indians who obviously definitely would have gazed upon Niagra.