Hungarian-born sculptor Peter Wolf Toth has been producing huge statues of Native Americans for nearly 40 years. Together they make up a series he calls “Trail of the Whispering Giants,” and there is a statue in each of the 50 states. Or there was—visit the Texarkana Travel Information Center, home of statue number 34, and the work that tourists often call “the big Indian” is nowhere to be found. A recent story from the Texarkana Gazette tells the mysterious tale of the incredible disappearing 30-foot wooden bust. After years of abuse by the elements, the statue was moved indoors in 1990. Sometime around 1998 it went missing.
The Texarkana piece isn’t the only Whispering Giant to have disappeared; Toth enthusiast David Schumacher lists a dozen such cases on the “missing statues” page of his tribute website. Toth himself has moved on; after finishing Whispering Giants for all 50 states, he placed several in Canada and then went overseas. His 73rd statue sits outside of Budapest, on the Danube river, in Hungary; a planned 74th will stand in India.
Here’s a short video about Toth and his giants: