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The San Pedro Mountain Mummy


In October 1932, while digging for gold in the San Pedro Mountains, Carbon County, Wyoming, two prospectors, Cecil Mayne and Frank Carr, blasted their way through some thick rock that a large vein of gold continued into. When the dust settled, they saw that they had opened up a small room, approximately 4 ft tall, 4 ft wide, and about 15 ft deep. This is where they claimed that they first saw the mummy of a tiny person.

The mummy named ¨Pedro¨ was found sitting in an upright position with its arms crossed, covering its crossed legs. It sat perpendicular to the floor on a small ledge in the room. It weighed approximately 12 ounces and was around 7 inches tall sitting, and 14 inches tall (estimated) standing. Its cranium was flattened, the eyes bulging and it was so well preserved that even the fingernails were visible. The head was covered in a dark, gelatinous substance, leading some to accuse Mayne and Carr of perpetrating a hoax using an infant from a medical collection, since some of the mummy appeared to have been preserved in liquid.

Native American legends, mainly those of the Shoshone tribe, speak of an aggressive race of "little people", also called the Nimerigar, which ranged in height from around 20 inches to 3 1/2 feet tall. According to Native American lore they lived in the San Pedro Mountains in south central Wyoming and fought constantly with the average sized humans of the area using poisoned arrows. It was often said that if one of the Nimerigar became sick or old, they were killed by their own people with a blow to the head. It was also said that the little mummies brought bad luck to anyone who found them, and to this day Native Americans warn people of the tribe of "tiny people eaters" that roam the San Pedro Mountain Range of Wyoming. Most of these claims were considered folklore until the discovery of what is now known as "Pedro" the mummy.

Other alleged discoveries, like the 1876 discovery of a "pygmy" graveyard in Coffee County, Tennessee, have some people saying that a race of pygmy people ranged all over the United States, and they often use Pedro the mummy as the proof. A man plowing his field supposedly found graves that were 2 feet long, 14 inches wide, and 18 inches deep. Other explanations have been offered for the burials, that they were of children or disarticulated people. The Cherokee had a legend of little people who lived in the mountains, came up to an average sized person's knee and were quite nice unless you disturbed their homes. There are many Native American stories about little people. The Pedro mummy famously disappeared, leading to many theories about this unexplained mystery.

In Popular Culture[]

  • SanPedroMountainsMummy

    The San Pedro Mountains Mummy as depicted in MetaZoo: Cryptid Nation

    The San Pedro Mountains Mummy is featured in the popular trading card game MetaZoo: Cryptid Nation.