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Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Decemystery 17: Pedro the Pygmy

Pictures and an X-ray of Pedro.
Stories of little people date back centuries—perhaps even millenia. Dwarves, gnomes, goblins, and elves of the small stature are common all across the world. Though in the way of them being real, that’s a bit harder to prove. The smallest human species, dubbed “Homo floresiensis” (nicknamed “Hobbit”) stood at a mere 3 feet, 7 inches and was discovered in Indonesia. It’s believed that Homo floresiensis lived up until around 60,000-100,000 years ago. Whether or not this little fellow survives as a possible Bigfoot relative, I can’t say, but it wouldn’t surprise me if there comes a day when someone claims to have seen a Littlefoot somewhere in Indonesia—if it hasn’t already happened.

But we aren’t here to discuss everyone’s favorite hairy ape-man. No, we’re here to ask a very simple question: is there a smaller relative to us humans out there? The answer can come in three flavors and all of them are acceptable: yes, no, and maybe. Regardless of your answer, the name of the game here is Pedro the Pygmy. So let’s dive in!

Sometimes referred to as the “San Pedro Mummy”, Pedro was discovered in October of 1932 by two men—named Cecil Mayne and Frank Carr—who were searching for gold in the San Pedro mountains of Carbon County, Wyoming. After blasting away some rock, Mayne and Carr discovered a small room. It was 4 feet wide, 4 feet tall, and 15 feet deep. Within the room the two men saw something quite unexpected. Sitting on the ledge was the mummified remains of a little person.

An extremely little person.

The mummy was a paltry seven inches in height—though it’s speculated that it may have stood at 14 inches. The mummy had a deformed head that appeared to have been flattened. The eyes were bulging and atop the head was something described as a “strange jelly-like substance”. It was also discovered that, in spite it appearing like a child or fetus, the mummy had a full set of adult teeth.

Several X-rays were performed on the mummy throughout its time outside its claustrophobic home; the results of which I'll discuss shortly. Between the tests, the mummy—which by this point was nicknamed Pedro—changed owners. Eventually though, he went missing.

After being given to a New York businessman named Leonard Wadler, Pedro vanished and has never been seen again. Whether or not he was destroyed, thrown out, or returned to life and fled to some tropical paradise is a mystery. One can only hope that he wasn't stepped on.

That's largely the history of Pedro. A little mummy with little history. So, let’s move onto theories. There are a few to go over and we’ll start out with the official answer: Pedro is an “anencephalic infant”. Basically: whoever the mummy was, they were born without large portions of the brain, skull, and scalp. This was determined by the first set of X-rays that the Pedro undertook. The same results were achieved when another set of X-rays were performed in the 1990s. Radiocarbon dating was also performed and it was concluded that Pedro was born in the 1700s with DNA testing showing that [s]he was Native American

However, if this is true: what of the teeth? Although some argue that perhaps this has something to do with Pedro’s deformity, others argue in favor of one of the other theories. The next of which is that Pedro is actually a little person. Evidence for this stems from Pedro’s extremely small size and the general appearance of him. I can’t find much else to support this, so let’s move on.

The next theory is that Pedro is, in fact, an alien. This is probably the first time that I’ve been able to use this theory without it being something of a joke. But yes, indeed, Pedro’s appearance, especially as a mummy, is certainly alien-like. Finding a weird substance atop his head, is convincing if you take it as face value. But is he really an alien? That’s harder to prove.

One can argue that Pedro perhaps blended in with the Native American tribe[s] of the area and attempted to take on an appearance similar to theirs. It can also be argued that he was a byproduct of breeding with a woman and the child was either killed for being an abomination or simply died prematurely and was hidden away for traditional purposes. However, to most, this idea is probably stretching like they’re Mister Fantastic. To other though, it’s the most likely argument. You decide.

The final theory that I shall go over is that it’s a hoax. Now whether or not this is possible with the radiocarbon dating and the DNA testing proving that the figure was alive at some point, I can’t say for certain. Either way, there are those that question the validity of Pedro being a real discovery and not some convincingly made hoax.

So who—or what—was Pedro the Pygmy? Was it simply an anencephalic infant? Or it an alien that got lost or abandoned and died within the room? Is it proof that little people live among us? Well, Pedro’s not the first mummified little person—or baby—to be discovered. There have been others throughout time, usually within South America from what I’ve seen, though whether or not Pedro is a part of that genus—assuming that the x-rays were wrong—is a mystery in of itself. Until the remains are discovered once more, should they not have been destroyed or thrown away, the choice is yours to make. I, for one, believe that there’s nothing special Pedro.


  1. Tyler "Bio" RodriguezDecember 19, 2018 at 2:58 PM

    I'm guessing genetic aberration, there have been well documented examples of bizarre genetic cases that shouldn't be real. People with multiple extra limbs. People with blue colored skin. I'm guessing that camp and not some crystal skull alien.

  2. Me, I'm going to agree with Tyler here and say yeah... genetic aberration. Alien, as cool as the theory is seems a bit implausible really.

    1. Yeah, that's what I think. That said: I think it's a pretty cool story. Wonder where it went...