Mothman

The Mothman, a huge black, birdlike thing that has been sighted around the world often. The Mothman is best known for its constant appearance around a small West Virginian town known as Point Pleasant. This lasted from November 1966 to December 1967.

The first encounter in Point Pleasant happened on November 15, 1966. Two couples, Steve & Mary Mallette and Roger & Linda Scarberry, were driving around a local abandoned munitions dump, dubbed the “TNT Area” by locals and was turned into a lover’s lane of sorts by local young couples. As they drove around, the group spotted two large, red eyes staring at them from a distance. They then noticed that the eyes were attached to a large, grey creature that Roger described as “shaped like a man, but bigger. Maybe six or seven feet tall. And it had big wings on its back.” They said it seemed to be waddling toward the door to the weapons plant, which was 10 feet or so away from the creature. They then drove as fast as they could away, but before they made it far, they saw either the same creature, or a different one but looked similar, was following the car and was keeping up with them. Mary also reported the creature making a sound similar to a “record played at high speed or the squeak of a mouse.”

The most popular idea as to the origin of the Mothman is that it’s extraterrestrial in origin. This idea was based off of the wealth of UFO sightings that accompanied the Mothman on its visit to Point Pleasant. Another popular idea was proposed by cryptozoologist Mark A. Hall. Hall suggested that the Mothman was a giant species of owl, unknown to science. He cleverly dubbed this owl as Bighoot. The creature has also been explained as a misidentification of the sand-hill crane, a six foot bird with a reddish head, a long neck, and scrawny body. Researchers have often shown witnesses pictures of the crane and none of the witnesses said that they could have mistaken the crane as the creature.

Sources

Encounters With Flying Humanoids by Ken Gerhard

The Mothman Prophecies by John Keel

Strange Creatures from Space and Time by John Keel

Mothman Festival

On September 19th & 20th, I attended the 14th annual Mothman Festival in Point Pleasant, West Virginia. In this post, I was planning on going over some of the events and what the festival is.

The Mothman Festival was started 14 years ago by Jeff Wamsley, the curator of the Mothman Museum in Point Pleasant. The idea of the festival is to celebrate the creature known as the Mothman, which is a superstar within cryptozoology.

Mothman was giant, dark, birdlike creature, about seven feet tall, and had huge, glowing red eyes. It was sighted in Point Pleasant from November of 1966 to December 1967. It is probably best known through the Richard Gere movie, Mothman Prophecies, based on the John Keel book by the same name.

The 14th Mothman Festival was a very worthwhile trip. The festival appears to be a mix of your average town festival with games, vendors, attractions, etcetera, and a paranormal conference. There were a variety of recognizable faces and names around and about the festival, such as Rosemary Ellen Guiley, Stan Gordon, Joedy Cook, Ken Gerhard, and Lyle Blackburn. There was also a large number of lectures being given by some of the authors and researchers. The topics of the lectures varies wildly, from Mothman comic-books to the afterlife to lizard-men to, of course, the Mothman.

The Festival was not the only attraction of interest in Point Pleasant, there was also an Ohio River Museum, the Mothman Museum, monuments for the Battle of Point Pleasant and the Silver Bridge, and a statue of the Mothman.

The festival has something for everyone–the paranormal, books, food, games, and even the Stay-Puff Marshmallow Man from Ghostbusters. I had a good time and am definitely going back next year.