The Acámbaro figures were uncovered in 1944 by a German immigrant and hardware merchant named Waldemar Julsrud. He stumbled upon the figures while riding his horse and hired a local farmer to dig up the remaining figures, paying him for each figure he brought back.

Eventually, the farmer and his assistants brought Waldemar over 33,000 figures which included representations of everything from dinosaurs, dino’s eating people, people riding dino’s, to peoples from all over the world including Egyptians, Sumerians, and “bearded Caucasians”.

About 8 years later in 1952 an archaeologist, Charles DiPeso claimed the figurines to be fake for several reasons: the soil where the figurines were found showed evidence of being planted recently before having being dug up, none of the figurines show any signs of wear and no sand is encrusted in the crevices. He felt the people copied what they saw in comic books and at the cinema of the time.

How do you tell what part of the collection is the “original” ones found in the very beginning?

The figurines were put on display at the National Museum in Mexico in 1955 showcasing arguments for both sides of the story.

The figurines were dated to 2,500 BC by doing a TL test in 1969 at the Museum. This pleased everyone except hardcore archaeologists. Additional TL tests were done in 1978 by someone else and the test results yielded a manufacturing date of around 1940. That is a 4,000-year difference.

The first figurine was found in 1944 and the second TL testing shows it was made 4 years earlier in 1940. So, does that mean the farmer somehow knew 4 years ahead of time that a German merchant would randomly find it and pay for all of it to be dug up?

The debate rages on, yet new tests with current technology are not on the cards to put this argument to rest.

Sources: Penn Museum and Wikipedia