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Tags bigfoot , hoaxes , minnesota iceman , Minnesota incidents , Ron Pine

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Old 10th August 2004, 08:04 PM   #1
Blondin
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The Minnesota Iceman

Reading the thread about the Cardiff Giant reminded me of a similar scam that I had all but forgotten:
The Minnesota Iceman

I saw this attraction at our local annual fair (The Red River Exhibition) back in the 60s & 70s (yes, I paid to see it more than once). I remember seeing something about it on TV so when I saw the exhibit at the fair I was very excited. The guy who gave the spiel was very smooth and had a number of well rehearsed answers for any skeptical questioners. It all made perfect sense to me at the time.

I remember him explaining that as the ice sublimated and was replaced with fresh ice it would become cloudier and cloudier until it would eventually become useless as an exhibit at which time he planned to turn it over to "medical science" for a full examination. I swallowed it all - hook, line & sinker.

Years later I read that the whole thing had been exposed as a fake and the original manufacturer had come forward and admitted their involvment. I thought that was the end of the story but according to the timeline in the above article the fake Iceman was switched for the real one in 1969 implying that the "real" one is still around somewhere.

This does not agree with events as I remember them because I know the last time I saw the iceman was post 1970 and they were still spinning the same yarn then.

The "real" Minnesota Iceman is probably spinning in his frozen grave where ever he is... or maybe not. Perhaps he's propping up a bar in somebody's basement rec-room just waiting for the right opportunity to re-emerge.
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:20 AM   #2
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We have some new info on the Minnesota Iceman. Professor Ron Pine, former curator of the Smithsonian has been relaying notes from Napier, to the Coalition Facebook page. Has given me permission to reproduce the Smithsonian notes here.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/smar...8526551179430/ is the link, there is far more info than I can put in here.

It starts as a reply to someone who may actually be LAL:

Originally Posted by Opening of thread by Prof. Ron Pine
If my memory serves me correctly, you once wrote here in this group that when Sanderson and Heuvelmans were examining the "Iceman," they accidentally broke the glass covering it and that's what released a decomposing flesh smell. I just read something though, from a source that some might be inclined to regard as authoritative, that the odor was being released from some insulation apparently involved in sealing the glass case, and there was no mention of any breaking of the case. Also, if I've correctly interpreted what I read, the Iceman was said to be under multiple sheets of glass. I'm not saying or implying that what you said was mistaken, this is just a matter that I think is relevant to an issue that I'm very much interested in, so I'm wondering if you recall your source for the breaking of the glass incident.
Edited by Agatha:  Edited for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:29 AM   #3
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The notes continue:

Originally Posted by Prof. Ron Pine
I had not read the account that you just posted before I wrote my comment above. I regard Coleman and Clark's account as unreliable, just as I do Newton's, because it is apparently uncorroborated by Heuvelmans's and Sanderson's original accounts. These secondary and tertiary acounts may have just been copying from each other. As I've noted before, and I think that Napier also took note of this in his writings, It's very interesting that in Sanderson's account he mentions hair that appears to be agouti-type (banded). No apes or humans have agouti hair, although some breeds of dogs do. According to some available information, the Iceman was constructed of rubber into which bear hairs had been inserted. I know of no bears that have agouti fur but I've seen some hints in the literature that some may. I'm assuming that, for some reason, some dog hide took part in some local portion of the model--put there as a repair, maybe? And then the hide started to decompose and that's what was responsible for the odor. Coleman has disagreed with me in regard to some matters. I thought that he said that this was owing to his seeng some Smithsonian archives, but I don't know exactly what he was taking exception to. Anyway, he wasn't there when I was reading the correspondence and being kept abreast of what was actually going on.
Edited by Agatha:  Edited for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:32 AM   #4
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Bigfooter Daniel Perez asks for Ron Pine's sources:

Originally Posted by Ron Pine
My sources are, as I've stated, my having read all ot the correspondence between Napier, Sanderson, Hoover and Ripley; Napier's books; Sanderson's writings, including what's been linked to above; Heuvelmans's writings (which I read years ago and haven't looked at lately); and the tiny, still extant, remnant of Napier's correspondence about the Iceman, and which is apparently all that was allowed to get into the Smithsonian archives. It consists of only a selected few of Napier's communications with Ripley, no letters to anyone else. No letters from Ripley to any of the other three involved, none from Hoover, and none from Sanderson. There is not a single letter still preseved that even mentions Hoover's name. In Napier's writings, of course, Hoover is mentioned as being consulted in the matter, but the extent to which Hoover and his FBI became involved is grossly understated and misrepresented. I cannot answer your question as to my specific sources for any specific matters which I reported or commented upon, without your telling me the specific comments you are specifically interested in. I've made a lot of comments.
Edited by Agatha:  Edited for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:35 AM   #5
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More on reasons for the 'cover up' , it's not because the Govt knows Bigfoot is real and can't let it out...
Originally Posted by Ron Pine
The second idea iabove is absolutely impossible. Actual coverups, however, that are not on a totally impossible scale, can and do occur, The issue here is one of terminology and classification. What is the minimum number of people that must be involved and how serious must the matter be that is being hidden befefore it can be called a coverup? Some folks would say that if Little Johnny was engaged in petty theft, and the teacher who caught him and the principal who was told about it told no one else and did nothing about it because the student's father was a very powerful man in town, that could be considered a coverup. I would regard that as a more serious matter, however, than Hoover seeing to it that as few people as possible were allowed to know certain facts that would be embarrassing to him.
Edited by Agatha:  Edited for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:40 AM   #6
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More about the dog tissue
Originally Posted by Ron Pine
So, anyway, In the course of the aforementioned letter from Sanderson to Napier, I read that now that the cat was out of the bag as to the Iceman's bogosity, Sanderson asked Hansen how the thing had been constructed. Hansen gave a general answer and then Sanderson asked "but what about that smell of rottenness?" The answer was that rotten dog tissue had played some role in the Iceman's construction. The issue of the tissue was not elucidated beyond that and, as a result, I made an incorrect assumption. I assumed that a small amount of dog tissue had been involved in the Iceman's construction, on purpose so that it would smell.
Edited by Agatha:  Trimmed quote for rule 4
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"I thought skeptics would usually point towards a hoax rather than a group being duped." - makaya325
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:42 AM   #7
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Clarification on the dog hide/ dog tissue question

Originally Posted by Ron Pine
Since I wrote the long comments above, through the good offices of Dustin Severs, I have been provided with copies of the surviving documents written by Napier--ones which, in part, substantiate what I have written above. My analyses of these documents will follow in this thread, probably piecemeal, but for now, I want to say more about that "tissue business," I've gotten some new thoughts about that. It seems very strange that Sanderson would have said that "dog tissue" was involved in the making of the Iceman, instead of saying, more specifically, "dog hide," which I had concluded explains Sanderson's having seen what he thought was agouti fur.
Edited by Agatha:  Trimmed quote for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 05:58 AM   #8
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Re claims that Hansen was a liar.
Originally Posted by Ron Pine
One may, of course, question that I ever saw such a letter from Sanderson, but your explanation of why he and Hansen might have said what I claim Sanderson said and what Sanderson said Hansen said sounds very odd. You say that Hansen was a liar and so when he said that dog tissue was involved in the construction of a phony entity that Sanderson and Heuvelmans had examined, he could have been lying, but at all times before and since Hansen maintained strenuously that the original Iceman was real. So why would he admit to Sanderson, on that occasion, that it actually was a fake made in part out of animal tissue? If his Iceman was for real, why would he lie that it wasn't?
Edited by Agatha:  Edited for rule 4
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Old 20th March 2020, 06:00 AM   #9
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More about Hansen
Originally Posted by Ron Pine
As to why would Hansen lie by saying that the Iceman was a fake if, in fact, it was real, the sequence of events is important hare. The FBI had already conducted its investigation and had determined that the Iceman was bogus. Sanderson knew this or very soon would and Hansen knew that Sanderson knew this or soon would, and the FBI certainly knew what it had done, so what would be the point of Hansen continuing to lie to any of the investigating group, Sanderson, Napier, Ripley, Hoover and his FBI? He knew that the game was up. None of the investigators, especially the FBI, would have ever just taken Hansen's word that he had not been engaged in illegally smuggling the dead body of a human-like being into the US, etc., or having taken part in or been knowledgeable concerning what appeared to have been a homicide of sorts if the thing was for real.
Originally Posted by RON PINE
No, Hansen would not have lied to get the FBI to back off. The FBI had already completed its investigation and the jig was up
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Old 20th March 2020, 06:02 AM   #10
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Responding to claims that it is all conjecture regarding the FBI investigation by Lu
Originally Posted by Ron Pine
How is what I'm saying conjecture? The FBI investigation was being carried out at the time that I was reading the correspondence, including that from and to Hoover, head of the FBI. The same lettter from Sanderson to Napier, in which he reported the dog tissue, stated that the FBI investigation had determined that the Iceman was bogus. Hansen had come clean about the dog tissue and the Icemen in general because the FBI had established that the Iceman was a hoax. I don't know if the FBI ever examined the Iceman or not.
Edited by Agatha:  Trimmed quote for rule 4
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Old 24th March 2020, 11:33 PM   #11
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Wow! What a blow to the Minnesota Iceman proponents!

Thanks for all the work in getting that info into this thread Drewbot.
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Old 27th March 2020, 11:31 AM   #12
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Wow its quite interesting!!! (About the iceman)
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Old 28th March 2020, 08:00 AM   #13
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Wait, someone still thought the Iceman was legit?
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Old 29th March 2020, 09:59 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Gilbert Syndrome View Post
Wait, someone still thought the Iceman was legit?
I've seen that on Facebook, so yes, some still do.
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Old 1st April 2020, 08:03 AM   #15
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Thank you Drew, that was very informative. I was considering purchasing the Iceman when it was listed on Ebay. Unfortunately someone hit the Buy it Now button while I was pondering on how to explain the purchase to my wife.

I saw it as a kid, it was hard to see in the ice but it was kinda stinky. To me it was a fishy smell. I never considered decomposing dog flesh as the source.

Chris B.
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Old 2nd April 2020, 08:48 AM   #16
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Ron Pine's current info includes a letter from Sanderson regarding potential costume makers that Napier had run into in 1967...
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Old 2nd April 2020, 03:33 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Drewbot View Post
costume makers... 1967...
Is this pertaining to the Iceman or the PGF?
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Old 9th April 2020, 10:20 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Is this pertaining to the Iceman or the PGF?
I took it to being an allusion to Napier's commenting on the PGF at the time of the filming, and he knew who made the costume.
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Old 9th April 2020, 10:32 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Drewbot View Post
I took it to being an allusion to Napier's commenting on the PGF at the time of the filming, and he knew who made the costume.
It wasnt a suit it was one of those black cutouts you can get now. That was the first.
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