The Mysterious Monolith(s)

By Danna Beltran

The intriguing tall metal structure found on the southeastern Utah desert causing the rise of many questions for its strange appearance.

(Zak Podmore/The Salt Lake Tribune)

A mysteriously placed monolith of unknown origin appeared in Utah a few meters away from a fort the Dacian people built, between 82 BC and 106 AD. It was discovered by officials of the Utah Public Safety and Wildfire on November 18. The strange thing about this whole event is that the monolith disappeared just as mysteriously as it had appeared according to the Bureau of Land Management’s Utah Division (BLM).

Upon its discovery, the BLM posted on Twitter that the unauthorized installation of the monolith was illegal. And as the news of this mysterious object spread, photos were taken to reveal it to be about 10 to 12 feet, with a prism-like shape. Before the monolith’s odd disappearance many more people, although advised not to by federal and state officials, sought out to see the unexplainable metal object for themselves. The enthusiasm of many could be seen through the creation of a subreddit, specifically dedicated to information regarding the monolith. Others have made it their mission to find the monolith’s origin, purpose, and composition. 


One investigator came to the conclusion that the object was three panels of aluminum stuck together, as he attempted to place a magnet on it. Another subreddit surfaced, claiming that the monolith according to Google Earth images has been in that location since at least 2016. It's safe to say that there have been a countless amount of theories and speculations as to where this object appeared from. Some people believe that it was placed by aliens, although it is more likely believed to have been the work of someone who was inspired by the science fiction novel, 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clark. Or as others choose to believe it to be an art installation or film prop. There have been artists' names mentioned as  the masterminds behind this piece. Like the sculptor John McCraken, who died in 2011, has been an example, as some of his artwork has visible similarities to the Utah object. Even his son Patrick McCraken told The New York Times, that his father once said: “He would like to leave his artwork in remote places to be discovered later.” Although it's important to keep in mind that these are just some of the many theories created, with the real answer yet to be discovered. 


Just one day after the Utah monolith disappeared, another one appeared in the Eastern Romanian city Piatra Neamt, on November 27. Rocsana Josanu, a Neamt Heritage official, told EuroWeekly that “It is in a protected area on an archaeological site. Before installing something there, they needed permission from our institution, one that must then be approved by the Ministry of Culture.” This other appearance just makes matters worse to a deeply concerning level as to what the endgame of these objects is. So let me leave you with this question: what do you gather from this, is it from a group of people just trying to mess with the world or is this something bigger we haven't yet figured out?