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- The American Goliah - 3/10 -


The spot is perhaps twenty-five feet below the house. The soil on the surface is a loose one, half sand and half muck (dark.) The spot has undoubtedly been filled in to a considerable extent from washings from the hills around. Mr. Wright, the former owner, says that the spot used to be covered with water, and that he had at one time a bridge constructed over this very point, in order to reach the higher land beyond. Even after the water failed to stand there constantly, he was obliged to use the bridge, as the soft muck was four or five feet deep, and was impassable for cattle and teams. The Onondaga Creek was within twenty rods of the spot, and at some seasons of the year overflows it. Some suppose the channel of the Creek was once there. The place had been a regular swamp for years. Mr. Newell has owned the farm for three years, and has occasionally ploughed around and thrown in dirt, to the depth of at least a foot.

Under the three or more feet of muck is found a strata of gravel from two to six and eight inches in depth. The body rests in and upon this gravel bed. The gravel under the neck of the image was very solidly pressed down. Underneath the gravel is found red clay, into which the gravel is pressed.

The right limb is perfect all around with slight exceptions. The left arm is perfect nearly to the hand, excepting that the shoulder is worn off some by the water underneath. The bottom of the right foot seems to be perfect. Some slight portions of the left foot have been cleaved off.

The family and the neighbors give, it might be remarked, an original hypothesis of their own, regarding the death of the man; viz: that in passing along over this spot he was either drowned or swallowed up in the mire and suffocated to death.


Passengers by the Central or Oswego Railroads leave the cars at Syracuse, and will find an excellent road through the beautiful Onondaga Valley, to Mr. Newell's residence, twelve miles from Syracuse. Strangers will find the principal hack stand of the city near the Wieting Block, on Salina street. The entire force of drivers became within three days perfectly acquainted, not only with the road, but with the leading facts regarding the wonderful discovery. The demand for carriages has been immense, and is constantly increasing. If parties desire to spend the day at Cardiff, they can take the Syracuse & Binghamton Railroad to Lafayette Station, and (with considerable difficulty,) secure a team across to Mr. Newell's house, a distance of about three miles. There is no village at Lafayette Station.


Everybody. Old and young, male and female, people of all classes of community, rush in a constant stream to view the immense curiosity. People from all parts of the United States are hastening to see the Giant before he shall be removed from his long resting place. The average daily attendance for the first week was from three to five hundred persons.


Probably for some time, as that seems to be the public wish. Arrangements have been made for some of the chief scientific men of the country to examine critically the colossus. Their opinion or opinions, (which will be published promptly in this work,) will have much weight in the minds of the managers in deciding when and what to do.


Three capitalists have bought of Mr. Newell, (who has declined probably over one hundred offers,) a three-fourths interest in the enterprise. The tour partners will determine what course to pursue.

We subjoin several reports of the Press for a few days succeeding the discovery of his Giantship.

From the Syracuse Daily Standard Oct. 18th, 1869.

The valley of Onondaga has a romance of beauty in its wild scenery, and as the home of the famous tribe of the red men of the forest-- the Onondagas--around whose council fires the chiefs and young warriors of the Six Nations assembled to consult on matters of great moment. It commences at the head of Onondaga Lake, having a broad surface where the main part of our city stands, and moderate hill-side boundaries, until we pass two miles south of the city bounds, where the bed of the basin begins to narrow away and the hills on either side to be more abrupt and higher. It continues to decrease in width, until it terminates against Tully Hill, a distance of fourteen miles from the lake. Its beauty of wild scenery is perhaps in greatest perfection in that part known as the Indian Reservation--still held by the Onondaga tribe--somewhat south of the centre of the valley. Two main roads lead up the valley, one at the base of the hills on either side; and riding along either of them in a pleasant day, an admirer of nature's wild grandeur has ample occasion of admiration. The gentle slope, rising way back and up as if touching the clouds, and the more abrupt and ragged, shrub-covered, not less high hills, miniature mountains, with every now and then a ravine down which the water leaps playfully along till it reaches the plateau below and into the little creek on its way to the ocean--is a landscape of beauty not easily described.

Just now this valley is the scene of an excitement, in the finding of a supposed petrifaction of a human being--a giant. The point of interest is on the south side of the valley, opposite and just beyond the little village of Cardiff, in the town of Lafayette-- twelve miles from this city, on a farm belonging to Mr. William C. Newell.

On Saturday last Mr. Newell thought to dig a well some six or seven rods east of his house, and a trifle south-east of his barn. The spot is probably thirty feet below the house, and the surface soil is a loose, half sand, half dark muck, the natural washing from the hills above. It is not more than twenty rods from the creek, the channel of which is thought to have been at or very near this spot many years ago. Mr. Newell and a hired man, in digging, had gone down but two and a half feet when something hard was struck, which was believed to be a stone. They thought but little of it at first, expecting to have to break it loose and pry it out. But throwing out a few more shovels of earth from its side, the feet of a man appeared. A few minutes more of labor exposed the legs to the calf; and now their interest being excited, they began to dig carefully around it, until the whole form of a man--petrified giant--was brought to view. The neighbors began to hear of what was found, and of course went at once to see.

Mr. Silas Forbes, who resides a mile and a-half distant, came to the city Saturday evening and apprised us of the new found wonder, and Sunday we went to see it. The story was a big one, and not liking "Silver Lake Snaiks," we wanted to see before telling our readers. And here is what we saw:--

The form of a man lying on his back, head and shoulders naturally flat at hip a trifle over on right side; the right hand spread on the lower part of the abdomen, with fingers apart; the left arm half behind, and its hand against the back opposite the other; the left leg and foot thrown over the right, the feet and toes projecting at a natural angle. The figure was of apparent lime stone, a mixture of the gray and blue, common in most parts of the county, and seemed perfect in every particular. The muscles are well developed; the ribs might be counted; the nostrils are perforated so as to admit a large sized finger up near two inches; the lines of toe and finger nails are plainly marked; the left ear is partially gone, but the right one is perfect and in proportion to the other parts; the nose finely shaped; the forehead high; and the "Adams' apple"' at the throat just projecting out, is as most common with men. The appearance of the "countenance" marks the Giant of the Caucasian race, and not the Indian. If a work of art, the artist has failed in any effort at hair on the head.

We have said that the whole was perfect. And so it appeared, except a few flakes dropped off while the work of exhumation was going on; and perhaps others yesterday. If any well proportioned man will make measurement of himself as above, he will see a striking agreement of ratio.

Though the figure has all the appearance of stone, nevertheless the outer surface shaves off with a knife without materially dulling the blade. This was tried, but of course was not allowed to proceed to disfigure Mr. Giant. A scale that fell from the bottom of one of the feet, looks much like gold quartz, but still is softish and crumbles readily, with a sort of soft sand stone result. It rests on half sand, half clay bottom, the earth above being, as we have already said, of a lighter character.

News of this remarkable discovery rapidly spread, and yesterday when we were there, people were coming and going, from a circuit of four or five miles around, in farm wagons, carriages and buggies, and on foot, to see it.

John A. Clarke, Esq., being at Cardiff, Saturday evening to speak on temperance, took occasion for a lamp-light view. Returning to the city near midnight, he told the story; and was telling it all day yesterday. Not one in fifty of his hearers would believe the counselor, generally esteemed reliable though he is. Still, before the day was over a dozen or more went out to satisfy their curiosity, and returned with full confirmation--and more too, and the "petrified Giant" is now the absorbing topic.

Mr. Newell has stumbled upon an "elephant" in this Giant. His neighbors say it is a fortune to him. It is averred that he was offered $5,000, $10,000 and even $20,000 for it; that a clergyman offered his farm in exchange for the monster--but these offers were all declined. We talked freely with Mr. N. He was quiet and modest, and we doubt if he has received any such proposals, except perhaps jokingly. He indicated no such thing. Yet he seemed anxious to have the "thing" brought out all right if possible, be it what it may, and therefore guards it by day and by night.

During Saturday night the surface water had settled in the pit so as to cover the image. The wise men of Cardiff were consulted. One said, bail out the water--exposure to the air will do no harm. The other said, leave it thus until some scientific man comes to decide as to the prospects of destructability. And the latter's advice

The American Goliah - 3/10

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