The Buried Crosses

One of the strongest cases for an afterlife ever reported is related by Hamlin Garland in his book, The Mystery of the Buried Crosses. Pulitzer-Prize-winning author Garland tells of his encounter with a man who showed him some 1,500 artifacts (mostly strange-looking crosses) that he and his wife had located in the California desert by following directions given by long-dead missionaries and native Americans. Intrigued by the man's story, Garland found a capable medium and set out to find additional artifacts. This he succeeded in doing. Garland said that he donated the collection to a California museum, but that museum says that they have records of returning them to Garland 3 months later. While Garland's letters discuss creating 5 collections each containing 100 crosses and copies of the other data validating the original finder and lending them to up to 7 museums in California and elsewhere, that is the last he had to say about them. Their whereabouts are currently unknown.

Up until 2011, all we have had of the relics are the few photographs published in his book and those kept by the West Salem Historical Society in Wisconsin. In December 2011, Michael E. Tymn informed fellow AECES staff member Bill Stoney that their mutual friend, Lisette Coly — head of the Parapsychology Foundation and granddaughter of its founder, Eileen Garrett — had told him of a new find. While going through some boxes long stored in her basement, she had discovered a box that contained 23 of the missing artifacts (21 cross-shaped and 2 lettered plates). The box also contained a letter of transmittal from the son of Garland's publisher, that establishes that these were from Garland. Handwritten notes and tags on several of the artifacts give the date when they were found, showing that they were some of the originals collected by the Parents.

We are proud to present the complete collection of all currently known photographs of the crosses and other artifacts discovered by Violet and Gregory Parent and by Hamlin Garland.

Photographs taken by Willliam Stoney of crosses found by Coly are displayed below. Click on any image to view a larger version.