; Phantoms and Monsters - Real Cryptid Encounter Reports - Fortean Researcher Lon Strickler

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The Morbach Werewolf

According to legend, the Rhineland town of Wittlich is said to be the last place in Germany where a werewolf had been killed.

Thomas Johannes Baptist Schwytzer, a supposed deserter from Napoleon’s army and a veteran of the disaster at Moscow, is fleeing to his homeland in Alsace, France. With him are a group of Russians, also deserters. While passing by the village of Wittlich, the hungry soldiers earmark a farmhouse and decide to take what they want. In the midst of their scavenging they are discovered by the farmer, whom they promptly murder along with his sons.

The farmer's wife, witnessing the foul deed, lets out a wail and curses Schwytzer.

"From now on at each full moon you will change into a rabid wolf!" she screams in her anguish.

Schwytzer relieves her suffering by crushing her skull.

As times goes on, the curse starts to take hold. Gradually a change comes over Schwytzer...his personality becomes harder and without inhibitions. He robs, rapes, and murders at his pleasure. He soon departs from his fellows who have had enough, and takes up with bandits and highwaymen. The ruffians are appalled at Schwitzer's excesses, so the ex-soldier flees to the sanctuary of the deep forests.

There the tales of a wolf that walks like a man spreads throughout the countryside. At night men and cattle are brutally slaughtered by the beast.

One night Schwytzer observes the beautiful daughter of a local farmer. Her name is Elizabeth Beierle, and in his carnal lust he rapes her.

Days later, while by his campfire in the woods, Schwytzer is discovered by a group of villagers who take him for the werewolf. They give chase and corner the fugitive near the village of Morbach. Promptly dispatching Schwytzer, the villagers bury him at a crossing. There a shrine is erected where a candle will burn continually. As long as the candle is lit, so the legend goes, the werewolf will not return.

Nine months later, a son is born to Elizabeth Beierles, whom she names Martin. To this day the descendants of this bastard child are a respected family in the vicinity of Morbach, and show no sign of the curse of their infamous ancestor, Thomas Johannes Baptist Schwytzer.

That is until 1988.

Hahn AFB
Canine stationed at Hahn AFB

One evening a group of Air Force personnel are returning to their base at Morbach. Passing the old shrine they notice the candle is out. They begin to laugh and joke about this, for all have heard of the legend of the werewolf.

Later, at the base, automatic sirens peal into the night...sensing someone or something has activated the perimeter fence. While investigating, a security guard detects a large creature, similar to a wolf, standing on its hind legs. It gazes at the soldier for a moment and then flees, clearing a 3 meter fence with ease.

A police dog is brought to track the beast, but upon arriving at the spot where the werewolf was seen, the canine cowers and howls, refusing to go further.

The candle at the shrine is relit, and the creature has been seen no more. - D. L. Ashliman - November 16, 1998

Thomas Johannes Baptist Schwytzer's burial shrine



I was stationed at Hahn from 1988 to 1991, and I worked at the Morbach depot a lot from 88-90. It is a very large area, and at the time it had only perimeter lighting and lights on some buildings near the front gate. It was true that there were several areas, mostly on the east side, that were heavily wooded, but for the most part the area was a tangle of open roads and steep, grass-covered burms.

We joked about the Morbach Monster, but usually only to scare the new guys. I worked with several people who had been there since before the 1988 incident cited above, and none of them ever mentioned it to me. The only stories I had heard were about one of the wild boars that the local Forstmeister kept in the area getting loose and chasing someone up a light pole. Not freaked out dogs, no fence jumping.

If you have never seen a german wild boar, they look like a 4 foot tall brazil nut with tusks and legs. They are dark brown and stinky and hairy and big and could easily be mistaken as some sort of supernatural beast.

Not to be a wet blanket, but I don't believe the story about the 88 sighting at all. It would be just too hard to keep quiet, and there would be plenty of people who would be just too scared to ever work there again. That place can be creepy enough at night as it is.
- CyKa


I was stationed at Hahn Ab. In 1992. The tale of Morbach is true to the villagers. The munitions site is actually where the village used to stand according to the legend they moved the town since they could not get rid of the werewolf menace. Also the candle was to keep the werewolf from coming to the new village.

I honestly think there is a big animal in that wooded area I have responded to many and I mean many calls by the munition workers about a large animal roaming the area. This has occurred both day and night. The only large animal that inhabits that area is a wild boar. Morbach is heavily wooded. The woods are so thick some parts are not passable even on foot and the munition site is 15 square miles. I have seen on three occasions that our fence was torn from the ground level coming into the site which is home to a ton of deer so I think this animal feeds on deer due to the fact I have seen many dead deer in that area. Well that is my two cents on Morbach. I do not think it is a werewolf but a big cat.
- Venom012


I was an Security Policeman ( SP ) at Hahn from 86 - 90 and spent a lot of time at Morbach. I heard all of the werewolf stories too, but never seen anything that would indicate to me that a werewolf actually was there. I walked that area all the time at night, and sometimes by myself. It was always fun to scare the new guys with stories of the werewolf, and then make them do a security check of the perimeter on foot ( the perimeter road was only accessible by foot). One of our K-9,s was this big black bovier with bloodshot eyes. We would always send that dog handeler to the backside of the area to meet the new guys with that dog. there was also reports of a German WW-2 soldier that roamed the area. - GMAC


I was stationed at Morbach 91-93... My buddy and I saw something in the bomb dump on night that looked like a cross between a bull dog and a monkey... and it did NOT like us shining the lights of the VW 6-pack truck on it. It was hairless and muscular and it bared its teeth at us and then ran up over one of the Igloos (hardened storage unit) We didn't think it was a werewolf, but when we told one of out our local friends about it, they laughed and said that the animal was just a fairy tale and that we should stop drinking at work! - Shane


I was stationed at Hahn AB from 83-90 and did many mid tours at Morbach as an SP. We called the monster MO-MO and yes I firmly believe there is something out there. Could have been a large dog, possibly, but many times we heard movements deep in the woods, and loud yowling. It was very spooky and I was very thankful for my M16. The whole place was just damn strange at night. - Kayne


I was stationed at Hahn A.B. from 1987 to 1990 had the time of my life in the area. I think we had about 8 to 10 SP's at the munitions storage area at the time. One night about 6 of us SP's along with 2 K-9 dogs decided to take a walk in the area without weapons we left them in the tractor trailer we had as Central Security Control. We first went to the pig pen that was in the storage area just to take a look the pigs were there and the gate was secure so we went walking down the road. About 100 yards from CSC we went off the road way into the forest that was in the area. Walking along the dogs stopped we and they heard some noise in the brush the dogs yelped they did not want to go any further we heard something in the brush again like if we were being shadowed. Then came the type of howl you could not duplicate nor have ever heard it seemed that it was just 20 or 30 yards or closer. My hair I remember on my arms stood and my body tingled all over, we all ran the heck out of there to CSC and locked ourselves in. I can not explain what I heard, I have spent 20 years trying to justify or explain what I heard. (What I think this could be is the towns people over the years they have mastered this wolf gig) - Albert G.


I was the first commander of the Munitionslager Morbach in 1956. We moved our inventory into the area outside the village of Morbach and our airmen were quartered at nearby Hahn Air Base.

Our unit was the 7372nd Ammosuppron Det #1 and our mascot was a very old dog of doubtful antecedents named Ammo P. Ammunition. We had a complete service record compiled for the dog. His record was exemplary until we arrived at Morbach.

Deer would clear the perimeter fence and then be found deceased shortly thereafter. Ammo was named as the murderer and was about to face a courts martial, when I decided to investigate. I viewed the body of the most recently departed deer and found a 30 caliber slug in the animal's head. As Ammo was not qualified to use either the M-1 or M-2 carbine, I promptly dismissed the charges. This over the protests of several airmen who said that they had had to shoot the deer to "put it out of its misery".

I reported the demise to the local Jaeger who promptly took possession of the carcass (which conveniently been found field dressed).

There were no further incidents of this nature.

This was my only encounter with the Morbach Werewolf
- L. P. McCormick


I was stationed at Hahn Air Base from 1986 to 1989 as an SP. I was assigned as the flight chief for "Charlie" Flight security. We posted people at the MUNNS site more commonly known as Morbach each night. I, too, heard the stories of the Werewolf. Were they real, I don't know, but I do say this, a couple of my long timers who were there since about 82 or 83 swore they saw the werewolf. Were they with Jake, I don't know. But they told me the same story. That they observed a "person" jump the fence, which was the standard 7 foot chainlink fence with the 18 inch outrigger. When it jumped the fence, the "thing" took off on all fours. They also said that when the K-9 unit was brought in, it was taken to the place where the "werewolf" jumped the fence, and the dog became very nervous. I walked the area where this happened. It is very dimly lit, the only lighting was perimeter lighting facing toward the outside. The lights were not very bright. It was a bit spooky being out there. On a lighter note, the newbies who were assigned to the area were always taken to the spot where the "werewolf" jumped the fence, and were told the story. One one occasion, one of the prankster SP's decided to hide under some leaves. When the new troop came by, the prankster reached out from under the leaves and grabbed the young guy by the leg. Screams were heard through the night, and the sound of a round being chambered into an M-16. Fortunately the other cop who was there grabbed the rifle before it was used for its intended purpose. This prank was never played again, at least so I was told. - MSgt "C"


I was stationed at Hahn 82-84 with the 50thSPS. I along with 4 others were sent for a security watch one night to the NATO ammo dump. The 5 of us watched (1 pair of night vision goggles) from a side of a hill the fence line in the near distance below. We watched what we thought was a person run to the fence, then right over and then the person or animal ran on all fours like a large dog. We were all spooked and chucked it up to a large dog.The whole incident lasted under a minute. I don't believe in legends, but this was very unusual. - Jake

"Das Monster von Morbach: eine moderne Sage des Internetzeitalters" - Matthias Burgard