The Giant and How He Humbugged America by Jim Murphy

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Synopsis

Two-time Newbery Honor Book author has written an amazing account of one of America's most famous hoaxes!

When a 10-foot tall purported "petrified man" is unearthed from a backyard in upstate New York in 1869, the discovery immediately turns into a spectacle of epic proportions. News of the giant spreads like wildfire, and well over a thousand people come to view him in the first five days alone!

Everyone has their own idea of his true origin: Is he an ancient member of the local Onandaga Indian tribe? Is he a biblical giant like Goliath? Soon the interests of world-renowned scientists and people from around the globe are piqued as arguments flare over who he is, where he came from, and if he is real--or just a hoax.

In a riveting account of how the Cardiff Giant mystery snowballed into one of America’s biggest money-making spectacles--and scams--Jim Murphy masterfully explores the power of 19th-century media and the unexpected ripple effect that a single corrupt mastermind can produce when given a stage.
 

About Jim Murphy

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Jim Murphy is a two-time Newbery Honor and Sibert Award-winning children's book author. He's worked in the publishing industry and is now a freelance writer. He lives with his wife and sons in Maplewood, New Jersey.
 
Published October 1, 2012 by Scholastic Press. 112 pages
Genres: History, Education & Reference, Children's Books.

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Giant and How He Humbugged America

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After a few hours of hard digging, they hit stone and eventually unearthed a 10-foot stone man, so anatomically detailed that examiners suggested a fig leaf in case the “unclothed giant might provoke the village women to have sinful thoughts.” Was it an “old Indian”?

Sep 01 2012 | Read Full Review of The Giant and How He Humbugge...

Publishers Weekly

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In this book, Murphy (The Crossing: How George Washington Saved the American Revolution) explains how another hoodwinker, George Hull, masterminded the creation and “discovery” of a giant gypsum statue of a man that had people guessing at its origins—and paying handsomely to see it.

Sep 17 2012 | Read Full Review of The Giant and How He Humbugge...

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