...Sorry, but for every 1 person in 1870 that believed a giant squid/octopus exited…there were millions of people that didn’t believe. It’s NOW (and by that I don’t mean 1870) that people have the hard evidence…and there are more believers than non-believers.
It’s not a numbers game. To quote Wikipedia:-
A giant squid specimen washed ashore in Glover’s Harbour, Newfoundland on November 2, 1878. Its body was 6.1m (20 ft) long, and one of its tentacles measured 10.7m (35 ft) long and it was estimated as weighing 2.2 tonnes.
The period (1870 - 1880) in Newfoundland saw the greatest known concentration of beached giant squid to date: 50 or more individual squid carcasses washed up on the shores of Newfoundland during this decade. An almost equal number of strandings also occurred in New Zealand during the late nineteenth century.
Carcasses are hard (well, soft and squishy) evidence. A. dux has been known to biologists for a long time; it’s an enigma, not an subject of controversy.