Monday, September 26, 2011

New Hampshire Wood Devils


I received the following anecdote from Will, a longtime resident of northern New Hampshire:

Hello - I enjoy reading your daily newsletter. I thought I'd write to you about an experience I had back in 1991. I enjoy photographing the outdoors and try to get out at least once during each season. It was the Fall of the year and I had seen several moose along the Pontook Reservoir and the Androscoggin River, so I decided to try and get a few photographs.

I parked off of Berlin Rd and walked into the woods east of the dam. I walked about 1000 feet or so. It was very dense and the light was low so I decided to get closer to the lake where I could pick up some better light. As I turned north I heard a cracking sound behind me. I turned to see what it was but saw nothing so I started to walk toward the area where the sound came from. I hadn't walked far when I saw something tall and thin dart from behind a sugar maple tree and quickly disappear. I stood for a minute and again this thing came from behind a large maple tree and then vanished again. I tried to get a photograph but the darn thing was fast and nothing every showed up on the shot. It didn't show itself anymore that day.

I went back to the location a couple more times but never witnessed this thing again. There are a lot of legends my father would tell us as kids but I really never gave it much thought. Some of the people around here used to talk about wood devils in the White Mountains but I've never heard about anybody seeing one or anything similar to what I saw.

The thing was about 7 foot tall, dark thick fur or hair and thin. Much thinner than a normal man at that height. Like I said it was very fast and nimble. I never heard a sound other than the footsteps it made when moving.

That's really all I have to say on this. I've seen many unusual things in my 76 years but this thing was the strangest. What do you think I saw? Will W.

-----

This is what I found on 'wood devils':

This was posted on the USENET several years ago and posted on a forum: Many years ago I lived up in Coos County in New Hampshire. Some of the old men would talk about things called "wood devils" that live in the woods. There apparently were a lot more of these creatures back in the 1930's than there are now.

These Wood Devils were tall and very skinny. They are gray colored and very hairy. I guess that people saw them mostly when they didn't expect to. They stay in the deep woods. They can move very fast. When a person walked through the woods he would nearly walk into one before he spotted it. They hide by standing upright and still against a tree. As a person approaches it, the creature will stand against the opposite side of the tree. As the person passes it will move so that the tree is always between the person and the tree. If it cannot hide it will still stay perfectly still until it knows the person sees it. They make awful screams. They have a semi human shape, but their faces don't look at all human. I have never seen one, but the people who said they did were regular churchgoers and would strap their kids for lying. I don't think they would carry on discussions of things they made up.


This was posted at burlingtonnews.net:

Wood devils (Eastern United States NA): A major part of Appalacian folklore, wood devils are tall, skinny humanoids with an almost "stick-man" appearence, due to their gracile build. Are considered hostile by the locals, and are much feared. Possibly a modern descendant of the gracile Au stralopithecines, or perhaps a race of the other eastern hominid.

Karl Shuker explained: According to the settlers inhabiting Coos County in New Hampshire, the deep woodlands of this New England state harboured elusive, fleet-footed beings known as wood devils. Although superficially humanoid in appearance, they were very tall, hairy, and thin, with grey skin. They were able to emit piercing screams, and their faces were not those of humans at all. Occasionally, a human would unexpectedly encounter one of these mysterious man-beasts, but if a wood devil became aware of a human's approach, it would conceal itself by standing upright and perfectly still against a tree, moving slightly to one side if necessary in order to keep the tree's trunk between itself and the oncoming person. All of these details are consistent with modern-day reports of the bigfoot.

The following is posted on the BFRO website:

YEAR: 1930's

SEASON: Unknown

STATE: New Hampshire

COUNTY: Coos County

OBSERVED:
Many years ago I lived up in Coos county in New Hampshire. Some of the old men would talk about things called "wood devils" that live in the woods. There apparently were a lot more of these creatures back in the 1930's than there are now.

These Wood Devils were tall and very skinny. They are grey colored and very hairy. I guess that people saw them mostly when they didn't expect to. They stay in the deep woods.

They can run very fast. When a person walked through the woods he would nearly walk into one before he spotted it. They hide by standing upright and still against a tree. As a person approaches it it will stand against the opposite side of the tree. As the person passes it will move so that the tree is always between the person and the tree. If it cannot hide it will still stay perfectly still until it knows the person sees it. They make awful screams. They have a semi human shape, but their faces don't look at all human. I have never seen one, but the people who said they did were regular church goers and would strap their kids for lying. I don't think they would carry on discussions of things they made up.


NOTE: so...what is this 'thing'? Is is a Bigfoot? Here is a link to a video of a similar sighting - Click for video - Wood Devil...Lon

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