Archeologists have discovered a 12-acre lost city deep within the Amazon rain forest that may shed light on a long-lost tribe of white-skinned, blonde-haired people known as the Cloud People.
The Cloud People, also known in legend as “the white warriors of the clouds” established expansive kingdom located in the northern regions of the Andes in present-day Peru during the ninth century. Bordered by the Maranon and Utcubamba rivers, in the zone of Bagua, their civilzation extended up to the basin of the Abiseo river, and to the very edges of Peru’s northern Amazon jungle. The Cloud People were defeated by the Incas but later conquered them by aligning with the Spanish Conquistadors. Unfortunately, diseases brought to the New World by their allies eventually wiped the Cloud People out.
Past archeological discoveries were so heavily looted that little was left to learn about the Cloud People, who are referred to as Chachapoyas in Inca legends. Other pre-hispanic groups referred to the Cloud People as “White Gods” due to their height, blonde hair and blue eyes.
The spanish conqueror Pedro Cieza de Leon wrote they wore woolen clothing and wollen turbans, and described them as “the whitest and most handsome of all the people that I have seen, and their wives were so beautiful that because of their gentleness, many of them deserved to be the Incas’ wives and to also be taken to the Sun Temple.” He also noted the Cloud People were significantly taller than the Spaniards, indicating they were Nordic and not Mediteranian. Another Spanish conqueror, Orellana, wrote similar descriptions. Verification of the Cloud People’s racial makeup came two years ago, when archaeologists found an underground burial vault inside a cave with five mummies, two intact with skin and hair.
According to Inca legend, the Chachapoyas remembered that their ancestors came from the East. The Amazon river is on the East and far east is the Atlantic Ocean. Archeologists have discovered paintings and drawings of large ships on the buildings of the Chachapoyas, indicating that they possibly traveled from Europe to South America by sea, passing through the Amazon river flows until they reached a more tolerable climate, away from the unbearable tropical heat of the Amazon jungle.
The Cloud People are probably best known for the Kuellap fortress on the top of a mountain in Utcubamba, which can only be compared in scale to the Incas’ Machu Picchu retreat, built hundreds of years later.
The newly-discovered fortress is tucked away in one of the most far-flung areas of the Amazon. Sitting at the edge of a chasm which may have been used as a lookout post, it was extremely isolated and very well-preserved.
The main encampment is made up of circular stone houses overgrown by jungle over 12 acres, according to archaeologist Benedict Goicochea Perez.
Rock paintings cover some of the fortifications and next to the dwellings are platforms believed to have been used to grind seeds and plants for food and medicine.