If you’ve been living under a rock, one of the biggest fiascos to rock the fortean world happened in Mexico City on Cinco de Mayo. Jaime Maussan, the man behind the program beWITNESS, revealed the so-called Roswell Slides to the world.
In 2013 rumors began circulating of slides discovered in an Arizona attic back in 1998 purportedly showing an alien on a gurney after the notorious 1947 Roswell crash. A Roswell “dream team” was assembled, photograph forensic experts were hired, and together these geniuses proved the slides authenticity.1
Keep that in mind, the slides not the subject matter. Whatever is in the images, appearing alien if one squints real hard, its identity remained in quantum flux being real and a hoax at the same time.
When Jaime Maussan, Richard Dolan, and other UFOlogical luminaries decided it was high time to put their money where their mouth is, after a tedious 5 hour presentation2, the internet went nuts. Bloggers, armchair researchers, and true believers whipped out their pirated copies of Photoshop for a better look at the slide. The placard Maussan declared illegible was made readable in a matter of days, if not hours.
Presented with this proof, Maussan announced his “Roswell Slides Challenge”.
“I Jose Jaime Maussan offer a reward of $5,000 (Five thousand dollars 00/100 USD) to the person presenting a real photograph of the same being shown in the “beWITNESS” event at the National Auditorium in Mexico City on May 5th, 2015.
This photograph must clearly present a being with the same characteristics shown in the image presented at the National Auditorium in Mexico City.
The image can be sent via email to email@example.com.
Likewise $10,000 (ten thousand) are offered to the person who provides truthful information on the whereabouts of the being’s body shown during the “beWITNESS” event, which allows its location and retrieval. Data must be accompanied with information re. when, who and where was the image taken, which can be corroborated.
The money will be deposited on a bank account specified by the person who delivers the evidence.”
Twenty days later, Jorge Peredo should be joining the lofty ranks of thousandaires with this photo.3
The placard is different and the wording changed from the original Roswell slide. Its body is covered with a burial garment, rather than laid bare for exhibit, giving the dead little boy a measure of modesty after more than a month of exploitation. Throwing more dirt on Jaime Maussan’s grave are two articles about mummified bodies discovered at Montezuma’s castle.
S.L. Palmer, Jr. wrote to the Southwestern National Monuments, an arm of the National Park Service, about his visit to Montezuma’s Castle in 1896.
There were however probably eight or ten bodies buried here, these were all small and undoubtedly children. There was but one preserved mummy and that was photographed in the exact position it was found.4
These photographs are no longer available, but the NPS supports the discovery of this little body by the Palmers.
The excavation revealed, among the skeletal remains of several individuals, a child mummy wrapped in cloth and buried with several artifacts. Palmer recalled removing the mummy and other items he found in the ruins. In addition, he took pictures of artifacts he excavated and of the Castle itself. Such photographs document the condition of the ruins at this time, and comparison of these photographs with later images reveals the damage and repairs that occurred over the years.5
And more details!
In January 1928, C. A. Clark, a resident of Prescott, brought a well-preserved child mummy wrapped in fragments of cotton cloth to Montezuma Castle for display in the monument museum. Later that year, Clark requested the return of the mummy, which he claimed to have found on private property. When Park Service officials learned that Clark had actually removed the burial from a site located on a national forest reserve, they refused his request and obtained permission from the Department of Agriculture to keep the mummy on display at the Castle.6
Tempted by a potential ten grand, I did a little investigating into the whereabouts of the mummy. My first conversation was with Mary at the Montezuma Castle National Monument. According to her, there are no mummies nor photos of them on display since they are sacred to local tribes. When I spoke with archaeologist Matt Guebard, he affirmed their repatriation and cited a Notice of Inventory Completion posted on April 1st, 2015.
Between 1894 and 1896, human remains representing, at minimum, eight individuals were removed from Montezuma Castle in Yavapai County, AZ, by S.L Palmer. In 1971 the remains and funerary objects were donated to Montezuma Castle National Monument by Gaylord L. Palmer. No known individuals were identified. The 14 associated funerary objects are 9 pieces of textile, 1 bowl, 1 wooden bow, 1 arrow, and 2 arrow mainshafts.
In 1927, human remains representing, at minimum, 10 individuals were removed from Castle A in Yavapai County, AZ, by the National Park Service. No known individuals were identified. The two associated funerary objects are one basketry bowl and one piece of cotton textile.7
Let me strongly discourage our audience from grabbing a shovel and kicking off an epic road trip. Anyone hoping to dig up this little mummy just to prove Jaime’s full of shit, be aware of the The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. NAGPRA subjects anyone found trafficking Native American human remains or cultural items to imprisonment up to 12 months and a $100,000 fine.8 The act also requires federal agencies and institutions receiving federal funding to return Native American remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony to Indian tribes.
If Jaime’s honest, he’ll going to pony up the five grand to Jorge. But there’s no way in hell Maussan’s going to shell out the ten grand, unless some enterprising amateur archaeologist wants to be $90,000 in the hole and play hide the pickle in a federal prison. A scam worthy of James Randi.
Mr. Maussan has responded to the clear photograph with this comment on Twitter.9
The picture that is circulating showing a being similar to beWITNESS, was painted over a photograph of a shelf.
So much for Jaime having any shred of honesty.
https://archive.org/stream/southwesternmonu1940depa#page/63/mode/1up Page 63, third paragraph ↩
http://www.nps.gov/moca/learn/historyculture/upload/moca_hist.pdf Page 38, last paragraph ↩
http://www.nps.gov/moca/learn/historyculture/upload/moca_hist.pdf Page 78, 1st section ↩