In 1966, Point Pleasant West Virginia, four sober and visibly shaken witnesses went to the sheriff and reported that they saw a 6 ft thing like a giant bat with human legs and glowing red eyes where it’s shoulders would be. It stood up and took off from the middle of the road and flew above the car with loud flapping wings as they raced away at 100 mph.
It’s a very strange true story that includes UFOs, Men in Black, a bridge disaster, and many eye-witnesses. The strangeness is probably a blend of fiction and non-fiction, which is unfortunate. If you like a good story and don’t care about what really happened, read John Keel’s stuff. I think Keel was a disinformation source, one way or another, possibly even a Mirage Man himself (Counter Intelligence Officer, Disinformation Specialist, really good liar for the government, however you want to say it) who was working to cover up a true strange sighting by adding a bunch of fiction. I don’t believe the demonic/supernatural/prophesy angle is part of the factual sightings … other than the fact that the Mothman did scare the begeebies out of people who saw it.
Mirage Men is dedicated to the memory of John Keel …, author of fortean classics Jadoo, The Mothman Prophecies, UFOs: Operation Trojan Horse, Our Haunted Planetand numerous other books, including some risqué fiction, under assumed names.
Keel was first and foremost a story-teller, and what I’ve always loved about his fortean work is that it knowingly blurs the lines between fiction and non-fiction. …
I once dug around to see what a serious person could learn. I did not have any reasonable conclusion other than it possibly being a military psychological operation on an entire town using a brilliant prop, a kind of flying suit, to figure out how people would react if the Apollo missions discovered aliens on the moon.
Now there are reports of new sightings, One in November 2016 even included a few photos.
On 20 November 2016, an unidentified man allegedly captured images of what he believed to be the Mothman, a flying humanoid monster that gained fame for terrorizing the West Virginia town of Point Pleasant in the mid-1960s. …
The photographer gave the pictures to local news station WCHS, claiming he took them while driving on State Route 2; the station aired the pictures in a 21 November 2016 report. The images are grainy and show the silhouette of a two-legged, winged creature flying around tree tops
The above was from the Snopes website, a slightly silly publication that doesn’t do very good research at times, especially if it involves the military. If you really want to know about the mothman, go back and read all the articles from that time from local newspapers. Look at the eyewitness drawings and read all the eyewitness accounts. There is no way in hell it was any bird we know.
Also, while I’m at it, Kenneth Arnold did not see a flock of pelicans. While flying a search and rescue mission, he saw and reported a formation of bat wing shaped jet powered aircraft with glass cockpits. They skipped like saucers. This is where the press came up with the term flying saucers. They were probably early versions of stealth fighters, since the US got the Horten brothers from Nazi Germany in Operation Paperclip.
Back to the Mothman:
MUFON is the world’s largest organisation dedicated to UFO and alien research, but also looks at other paranormal cases reported to it.
The Mothman … was a legendary creature reportedly seen in the Point Pleasant area from November 12, 1966, to December 15, 1967.
The first newspaper report was published in the Point Pleasant Register dated November 16, 1966, entitled
“Couples See Man-Sized Bird … Creature … Something.”
It was later popularised by John Keel in his 1975 book, The Mothman Prophecies, which claimed there were supernatural events related to the sightings.
It was turned into a film starring Richard Gere … Roger Marsh, MUFON director of communications, said: “A Mothman-type creature is being reported in Chicago by three separate witnesses over a four-hour period, according to three witness reports from the MUFON witness reporting database.
“The cases took place between 10 pm on April 15, and 2 am on April 16.
“Please beware of all case details until an investigation is completed.
“At this point in the investigation, a hoax cannot be ruled out.”
The first witness was out on Lake Michigan with her husband and two other couples celebrating a friend’s birthday.
She said: “We were about two miles out on the lake, just off of Montrose at about 10 pm.
“We were enjoying ourselves when I happen to look up and saw what looked like a giant bat, and not like a fox bat.
“This bat was as tall as my husband, who is 6-foot, 4-inches, or even bigger.”
She said it was solid black with eyes that seemed to reflect the moonlight.
She added: “This bat circled the boat three times in complete silence before heading off towards Montrose. It quickly blended into the night sky and was gone in seconds.”
About five minutes after seeing the creature, the same witness saw a bright green object traveling north to south at the horizon.
We were enjoying ourselves when I happen to look up and saw what looked like a giant bat, and not like a fox bat.
She said: “I began feeling this overwhelming sensation of dread and told my husband that I felt that it was prudent that we get off the water as quickly as possible.”
Thirty minutes later, another witness was “hanging out with my boys and a few friends” in Chicago at 10.30pm.
She said: “As we talked about work and our families, we heard what sounded like a bird flapping its wings.
“One of my homies yelled out that he saw a huge Lechuza over by the road.”
The Lechuza is a Mexican urban legend or myth about an old woman who can turn into a giant, black bird.
She added: “We walked over there and saw what looked like a big owl.
“As we walked up on it, this owl stood up on two feet and looked right at us.
“We saw what looked like a huge Lechuza, except it was about six feet tall and really big. It had large glowing red eyes that were completely freaking everybody out.”
The third report was at 2am on April 16.
The man said: “I arrived for work at 2am at the Chicago International Produce Market just off Damen and as I walked across the parking lot a bunch of guys were staring up at the sky.
“I looked up and saw the biggest freaking owl I have ever seen! I’m 6-foot, 2-inches, and I’m guessing this thing was at least a foot taller than me.
“It was completely black except for it having bright yellowish/reddish eyes like a cat.
“It stood there for a minute or two staring at everyone before shooting up into the sky and disappearing.
“It made everyone feel very uneasy and only took off after some guys threw some rocks at it.
“It had wings on it like an owl, only bigger and you could hear it flap those wings when it took off.”
Illinois MUFON State Director Sam Maranto and other staff members are investigating the bizarre reports.
Mr Marsh added: “This account is taken merely from the early witness reports filed with MUFON.
“Please remain skeptical until witness interviews have been conducted and more case evidence is assembled.”
These days it would be a lot easier to fake something like this than in the 1960s, but as one person pointed out, even back then it could have been a prop carried by wires using a drone.
It’s easy to forget that fan-driven drones were being developed as early as 1952…
There are remote controlled UAVs now that flap their wings like a bird. Here’s a paper on the subject.
More on the original story:
“On November 15, 1966, four individuals – two married couples – were at what was essentially a lovers lane in Point Pleasant, West Virginia,” explains Coleman, who has been researching so-called “Fortean Phenomena” (from Charles Fort) since 1960. “These two couples saw two giant red eyes, and it very much scared them…they didn’t know what to make of it.”
This, then, was the first reported sighting of the “Mothman,” which Coleman goes on to say “was described as 6-to-7 feet tall with red eyes and no head, as if the eyes were in the breast area, and with huge wings.” The creature “came toward them. They took off and the creature followed them right up to the city limits of Point Pleasant.” The incident was reported to the local sheriff, who went to the lovers lane and “searches around, sees a puff of smoke in a nearby area from possibly this creature taking off and landing again.”
While Coleman reports that the account was “ridiculed in the local press,” something very strange began to happen: “More and more people started seeing this creature. For the next thirteen months, over 200 individuals had some interaction with some strange phenomena – and about a hundred of those said they actually saw Mothman.”
If your bird has a head, or arms, or does not have huge red eyes and human-like legs, it’s not the mothman. Here’s are two sketches from original eye-witnesses:
The next ones are drawn from eyewitness accounts by Aaron Norhanian. These are close, but are wrong because the wings are not in the right place in relation to the body as you can see by the original sketches above. The wings don’t come out of the mothman where human arms would or where ordinary bird wings would, they seemed to come out of the top of the head like giant flapping ears.
Too bad no one got a picture of the latest sighting.
If you live in Chicago, keep an eye out.
Update: This photo below was supposedly from Phoenix, AZ
… Richard Christianson claims to have taken the photo—… He posted the photo on Facebook with the statement, “What the hell do you see in this picture for reals ??? Anybody.” … it no longer appears on his page. Judging by his posts he is not into this sort of thing at all.
A man in Arizona released an image on Facebook last Sunday that many believe contains the ominous shape of the Mothman creature. The Phoenix resident, a former music producer named Richard Christianson, said he captured the photograph near Tucson. … He did not include a background story of the alleged incident.