The Immense Collection of Strange Acambaro Figurines: Evidence of Dinosaurs Living Among Us?

The Immense Collection of Strange Acambaro Figurines: Evidence of Dinosaurs Living Among Us?

Most mainstream paleontologists and geologists place dinosaurs on earth’s timeline at around 220 million and 65 million years ago, during the Mesozoic Era. Homo sapiens on the other hand, do not appear in the record until about 200,000 years ago - in the Middle Pleistocene, Middle Paleolithic (Eurasia), or Middle Stone Age (Africa). There are, however, occasional claims of evidence that dinosaurs and humans were not so temporally distant from each other, and in fact coexisted at one time. The bizarre Acámbaro figures are an example of this phenomenon.

The Acámbaro Figures Emerge

In 1944, the German shopkeeper Valdemar Julsrud claimed to have stumbled upon mysterious figurines while on horseback near Acámbaro in Guanajuato, Mexico. He said that he found over 30,000 of them with the help of a farmer. What is distinct about the figurines is that they appear to depict dinosaurs and humans living together. Additionally, there are also some strange figurines that many people say resemble flying saucers and even aliens.

‘Flying Saucer’ and humanoid figurines from the Acámbaro collection.

Flying Saucer’ and humanoid figurines from the Acámbaro collection. (The Greater Picture)

Most archaeologists have dismissed them as fakes because thermoluminescence studies and analysis of the artifacts’ surfaces reveal a very recent age. But these studies have not stopped those who are outside of the archaeological mainstream who have other ideas about the figurines’ origins.

Those who believe that the artifacts are genuine can be divided into three groups: cryptozoologists who say that the figurines are evidence of a relict population of dinosaurs in the region who happened to come into contact with humans, those who believe that the figurines were left behind by interdimensional aliens who could travel back to the time of the dinosaurs and bring knowledge of them to Central American peoples, and young earth creationists who claim that humans and dinosaurs had to coexist to fit in with their interpretation of Genesis chapters 1-11 in the Bible. The first position is probably the most consistent with the mainstream view. However, none of these points of view matter much until you first examine the questions about the collection’s authenticity.

Some of the mythical and dinosaur-like Acámbaro figurines.

Some of the mythical and dinosaur-like Acámbaro figurines. (The Greater Picture)

Questions of Authenticity

On the surface, one of the main problems with the Acámbaro figurines being genuine is that there are few, if any, nearby dinosaur fossils. There are also no written accounts or oral traditions which speak of dinosaur-like creatures living in the area. It seems that if they were common enough for thousands of figures to be produced depicting them, the giant beasts would also show up more often in local traditions - just like jaguars and butterflies do. One website in favor of their authenticity states that there is no recent native pottery tradition in the area. On the other hand, if this claim is accurate, the figurines need not have been produced in the area either - even if they are just an elaborate hoax.

Some of the clay figures from the huge collection.

Some of the clay figures from the huge collection. (The Greater Picture)

In 1952, American archaeologist Charles Di Peso examined the artifacts and found that their surfaces showed no signs of weathering or collecting dirt in the cracks (that would have suggested that they were thousands of years old.) He used these observations to conclude that the figurines were not ancient. He also asserted that the family which had originally provided the figurines to Julsrud had been making them for a peso per item. Furthermore, the figurines resembled creatures and characters that the family may have seen in films at an Acámbaro cinema or from reading comic books available at a museum in a larger city nearby. These findings cast doubt on the authenticity of the artifacts.

Humanoid figurines from the Acámbaro collection.

Humanoid figurines from the Acámbaro collection. (CC BY SA 3.0)

Thermoluminescence dating was also used on some figurines between 1969 and 1972. The analysis produced a date of about 4500 years B.P. (Before Present) placing the age of the artifacts around 2500 BC. Believers proclaimed this information as evidence for their authenticity. However, further studies in 1976 and 1978 revealed that the old date was erroneous and that the figurines did not meet the temperature conditions required for reliable thermoluminescence dating. The dates that could be attained revealed that the objects were from the late 1930s or early 1940s - shortly before they were “discovered”.

A few humanoid-animal combination figures.

A few humanoid-animal combination figures. (The Greater Picture)

Are the Figures Really Dinosaurs?

These findings all cast doubt on the authenticity of the figurines. Another issue is that even if they are genuine, it is not clear that they are in fact depicting dinosaurs. For example, many of the figurines which are said to represent dinosaurs only have two legs - not the four legs that are normally associated with specific creatures. Some archaeologists have suggested that, if they are genuine, they might actually depict stylized non-saurian animals, or mythical monsters instead.

Detail of one of mythical-looking Acámbaro figures.

Detail of one of mythical-looking Acámbaro figures. (CC BY SA 3.0)

It is possible that humans and dinosaurs did coexist, but this finding does not appear to be evidence supporting it. Even the prominent young earth creationist organization, Answers in Genesis, which would be very interested in any evidence for dinosaurs and humans coexisting has stated that this is probably a hoax.

The results of the various studies suggest that the Acámbaro figures are not evidence of dinosaurs coexisting with humans - and thus they do not create problems for paleontologists and geologists saying that dinosaurs went extinct 65 million years ago, at the end of the Cretaceous period.

Some of figurines which look like reptiles or sea creatures.

Some of figurines which look like reptiles or sea creatures. (CC BY SA 3.0)

Top Image: A famous Acámbaro figurine depicting a human apparently riding a dinosaur. Source: Creative Commons

 By Caleb Strom


Abrahams, I. (2011) Kachina Bridge Dinosaur Petroglyph: Still Good Evidence. Available at:

Di Peso, C. C. (1952) The Clay Figures of Acambaro, Guanajuato, Mexico. Available at:

Fitzpatrick-Matthews, K. (2007) The Acámbaro figurines. Available at:

Pezzati, A. (n.d.) Mystery at Acámbaro, Mexico: Did Dinosaurs Co-Exist with Humans? Available at:

The Greater Picture. (n.d.) The Waldemar Julsrud Collection. Available at:


At first glance, the Acambaro figurines do not appear to be genuine, due to the deviation from what would be considered the “typical” styles of the region during  the time period in question. This is the standard, nearly automatic answer given by the vast majority of archeaologists when confronted by “atypical” findings, which go against the currently accepted theories.

Insofar as verifying the authenticity of the artifacts goes, there are several basic “rule of thumb” techniques which can be used even by amateur archaelogists to determine if the objects “might” be authentic. All artifacts which have been the soil for periods of hundreds, or sometimes even thousand of years typically have indicators which may be used to “get a feel”, so to speak, of their possible authenticity.

One of these indicators is the presence of “root marks” on the surface of the artifact. These are small lines on the surface caused by the root systems of nearby plants which have rested against the object and left their traces on its outer layer.

Another method is the presence of Manganese deposits or “Manganese Blooms” on the surface of the piece. These marks are present in many ceramic objects which have been in the ground for a long period of time.

Thermoluminescence is used primarily as a dating technique, and if done correctly is a reasonably accurate dating tool, but is only used when there is a high probability of the artifact being authentic, and possibly of great value. This is due to the highly technical, and very costly process utilized.

Are the Acambaro figurines real, or are they fake? Until more research is done, the truth will not be known, but for me, with the evidence being what it is, I simply have to call fake. I do hope that I am proven wrong since verifying their legitimacy would turn the entire scientific community upside down. Something that I personally would enjoy watching.

R. Lee Bowers

The figures look too good to be true. Probably it’s just another trick to get attention.

--Still learning--

Roberto Peron's picture

I do not believe these "artifacts" are authentic and likely are a hoax, however, there is evidence for the coexistence of dinosaurs and humans found in places like Glen Rose, Texas, USA.  The Taylor Trail is a series of 14 sequential human footprints on the same platform with at least 134 dinosaur tracks.  The trail is located along the Paluxy River that runs rapidly through the Dinosaur Valley State Park. Human tracks have been found here in the same formation and same bedding plane and in some cases overlapping dinosaur tracks!  Tons of limestone overlay had to be removed to find the entire trail of tracks which pretty much proves they were not carved by someone trying to perpetrate a hoax. Tracks made in mud do not last long so to be preserved they must be solidified rapidly.  

These tracks are consistent in length and a right-left walking pattern all along the trail.  In 7 of the 14 tracks individual human toes can be seen.  The gait between the human tracks is about 2.6 feet all along the trail meaning the gait is consistent and not haphazard.  The dinosaur tracks are 3 toed with a consistent gait as well.  The mainstream says what appear to be human tracks are not human at all but from a smaller dinosaur.  LOL this despite the fact that you can clearly see human shaped toes and the human shaped feet. What dinosaur had feet exactly like humans?  The human tracks have also been deemed a hoax by the mainstream.  Of course, we must cover up any evidence that does not support our standard notion of evolution and when we can't then we must declare that evidence to be a hoax.  God forbid we follow the evidence wherever it leads!!  

But then, there is also the "problem" found in some cave paintings the show ancient humans apparently hunting what appear to be dinosaurs too.  Fact is the evidence says there is something very long with our timeline and badly in need of correction.  And, then, of course there are all of those reports about dinosaurs seen in modern times with many of those reports coming from police, military, professors, doctors, etc.  

angieblackmon's picture

This is one of my favorite subjects or ideas. I’m not sure what really happened, if man and dino ever hung out together, but it sure is interesting that dino-like beings have been created for a very, very long time. 

love, light and blessings


From one of Master Li Hongzhi's Buddha Law talks he talked a little about the different mankinds of the past:

excerpt 1:

“I just mentioned that this Earth’s history has only been 100 million years long. Basically, the 100 million years on this Earth is divided into two major periods, with 50 million years in each period. The first 50 million years was the period in which giants, dwarves, and medium-sized people coexisted. The giants had an average height of five meters; the medium-sized people were the same as us modern people, with an average height of less than two meters; and dwarves were only a few inches tall. When Gods created people, why did they simultaneously create these three types? It was to test out which of these three types of people would be suited to live on Earth until the final stage and be suited to obtain the Fa.

During those 50 million years, man’s ability to understand the world was constantly being shaped, while at the same time it was being determined which type of person would be kept. At the end it was found that the giants weren’t suitable. Since they had large bodies, distances were shortened for them, in terms of their relation to the Earth. They also shortened time, relatively speaking, because giants’ consumption of material resources was not proportionate to the Earth.

Later on it was found that dwarves also weren’t proportionate—forests were everywhere on the Earth, and it was hard for them to clear trees. At that time there was no cleared land, and it would have been hard for them to establish a civilization such as today’s.

Meanwhile, time on Earth seemed to be too long for dwarves, and distances were too great; crossing oceans would have proved far too difficult for dwarves. So they weren’t suitable. The giants and dwarves were then weeded out. They weren’t weeded out right away—50 million years passed before they started to be gradually weeded out from history. It was two centuries ago that giants finally disappeared from our sight; in other words, it was just over two hundred years ago that giants finally vanished from sight.

Dwarves, meanwhile, were still sighted just seventy or eighty years ago. Only in recent times did they become extinct, and it’s not that they’re completely gone—some went to other dimensions, and some went into the earth. They know that they are people who’ve been weeded out, so they don’t make contact with modern people.”

excerpt 2:

"..Another mystery is, why were there large animals like dinosaurs? The truth is, they were prepared for the giants. There’s no difference between the way a five-meter-tall person looks at large animals like dinosaurs and the way our people today look at cows. "

Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest.

Human Origins

Kalash girls with traditional clothing.
The Kalash (known also as the Kalasha) are an indigenous people living in what is today Pakistan. Although Pakistan is an Islamic Republic, with more than 95% of its population being adherents of Islam, the Kalash hold on to their own religious beliefs, along with their own identity, way of life, and language.

Ancient Places

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Next article