The Kossuth Giants
Kossuth: October was a month of some excitement in scientific circlesas seven strange and gigantic mummies were discovered just outside of Kossuth Center. Marvin Rainwater, a local farmer, had been digging a new well on his property and struck a deposit of very hard stone about nine feet below the topsoil. In attempting to dig it out, he found that it was more than four feet wide in every direction. Removing it would be a terrific chore. He considered the possibility that this was a layer of bedrock, but that would certainly be odd that close to the surface. Further, being somewhat familiar with geologic deposits, he knew that the stone was not the familiar limestone for which such Eastern Iowa areas like Stone City are famous. This was something else entirely. Upon close inspection Rainwater also saw that the stone was not as rough as might be expected in a natural formation, but was in fact smooth and polished.
Now very curious as to the nature of the find, he called several friends from surrounding farms and they began an excavation. They discovered that it was not a single stone, but rather one of at least several irregularly cut slabs stretching out over a wide area, yet fitted so tightly together that not even a knife blade could be put between them. Each slab measured roughly 8'x10', and when struck with a sledge seemed to ring with a hollowness that might indicate this was not a floor but the outside portion of a ceiling. Rainwater wondered if he had not stumbled upon some sort of buried stone structure on his property. Believing that there might be a way to parlay living other than farming if he played his cards right, Mr. Rainwater contacted Georg Von Podebrad College, who in turn dispatched a team of archeologists, anthropologists, and geologists to the site.
The researchers were delighted with the anomalies presented them. Firstly, the stone was not at all native to Iowa, but was in fact basalt-a hard, dense volcanic rock composed of plagioclase, augite, and magnetite. The type of stone used by the Egyptians to build their massive monuments. The depth of the slabs indicated that they had been there for a very long time, predating the advent of the kind of modern transportation and heavy machinery needed to bring such a large quantity of foreign stone to Iowa, and quite probably the slabs had been laid down before the last glacial age. It is impossible to gauge with any certainty just how long they had been there.
After the soil covering the slabs had been entirely removed, the area covered by the stones was a perfect square measuring 188 feet on each side. Digging around the perimeter revealed that Rainwater had been correct, the structure did go deeper into the ground. The cyclopean structure was revealed to be a pyramid similar in shape to one located at Marietta, Ohio, although those mounds and monuments erected by the prehistoric Indians were made of sun dried brick mixed with rushes. This technique, too, is curiously similar to the Egyptian technique of brick making with straw and mud.
It took many months, but the entire structure was finally exposed, and on the eastern side was found a massive filled in archway with strong resemblance to those of ancient Greece. At the bottom of the arch was a smaller arch, measuring only 6' to the capstone. This too had been filled in and blocked off. With genuine awe and some hesitancy the scientists of the Rainwater Site began the work of opening the smaller entryway, wondering what secrets lay within.
When the light from the first torch penetrated the gloom of the ancient structure, Albert Grosslockner gasped at what he thought were seven huge and exquisitely detailed statues seated in a ring around a very large and deep fire pit. Moving closer, he realized that the figures were not carved of stone, but were in fact the mummified remains of some giant humanoid race. Could what they found be in fact a prehistoric burial vault for some pre-human creatures or was it a prison designed to hold some freakish aberration of nature? The figures, were each fully ten feet tall even when measured seated in their cross-legged positions. They all faced into the circle with arms folded across their legs. Upon close examination it was seen that they had double rows of teeth in their upper and lower jaws. The foreheads were unusually low and sloping, with exceedingly prominent brows. The skin of the mysterious giants was wrinkled and tough, as though tanned, and the hair of each of them was distinctly red in color. Their faces, still very expressive even in death, taunted the scientists with their silence. Who, or what, were these creatures, how had they come to be locked in this stone room, and where had the stone itself come from originally?
After careful excavation of the site, the bodies were removed for x-ray and autopsy examination. The excitement over the find was far in excess of the "Gypsum Man" find in Iowa so many years before-a hoax from which the Putnam Museum of Davenport had never fully recovered from. These giants were very real. The medical examinations demonstrated that there was definite skeletal structure, that they were organic creatures who had once been very much alive.
One explanation for the mummies might lie in the legends of the Paiute Indians who tell of a race of red-haired giants who were their mortal enemies centuries ago. They were called the Si-Te-Cahs, driven from Nevada by a previously unheard of alliance of tribes. Did the Si-Te-Cahs retreat from the west to Iowa? Was the stone structure here before and simply co-opted by the giants? No one may ever know, however it is interesting to note that among the Indian relics held in the Kossuth County chapter of the State Historical Society are three robes made entirely from very long strands of red hair. We await DNA comparisons of samples taken from the mummies and the robes to determine a connection.
In the mean-time, Marvin Rainwater has had his farm purchased by interested parties in Hopkins Grove for an undisclosed sum, and is quite happily no longer toiling in his fields or digging wells.
submitted by R. M. Harrington