1884 Wildman of Ottowa

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Papers from the 1800s and early 1900s are littered with reports of ‘wild men’. This story was clipped from The Republic of Columbus Indiana and was published on August 1st, 1883. In this case a what sounds more like a Bigfoot briefly terrorized people in Pembroke, near Ottowa, Canada.

Stories of wild men pop up quite regularly but almost never is there any final explanation as to who or what these sightings were of. Obviously some of the sightings are likely to be of exactly what you would expect, wild men. But not all of them fit with the description of a human gone feral.

An 8′ man with fur over its entire body, but a bare face sounds far more like Bigfoot to me. Here is a transcription of that original 1883 article.

Man or Gorilla

The Extraordinary Character Who is Scaring Canucks

Man or Gorilla news clipping about Ottowa Wild Man

Pembroke, about one hundred miles north of Ottawa has a lively sensation in the shape of a wild man eight feet high and covered with hair. His haunts are on Prettis Island, a short distance from the town, and the people are so terrified that no one has dared to venture on the island for several weeks. Two raftsmen named Toughey and Sallman, armed with weapons, plucked up sufficient courage to scour the woods in hope of seeing the monster. About 3 o’clock in the afternoon their curiosity was rewarded. He emerged from a thicket having in one hand a tomahawk made of stone and in the other a bludgeon. His appearance struck such terror to the hearts of the raftsman that they made tracks for the boat which was moored by the beach. The giant followed them, uttering demonical yells and gesticulating wildly. They had barely time to get into the boat and pull a short distance out into the stream when he hurled the tomahawk after them, striking Toughey in the arm and fracturing it. Sallman fired two shots, but neither took effect, the giant retreating hurriedly at the first sound of the firearms. It is more than probable that the townspeople will arrange an expedition to capture, if possible, what Toughey describes as a man who looks like a gorilla, wandering about in a perfectly nude condition, and, with the exception of the face, completely covered with a thick growth of black hair.

One thing I find particularly interesting in this article is that they make reference to the creature using a tomahawk. This is something you never hear anyone mention Bigfoot doing today. So was this just a large wild human, or was it actually a Bigfoot using a weapon?



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