West Virginia December 22, 2017
There’s A Strange Phenomenon In West Virginia And It’s Too Weird For Words
Among the many strange phenomena that have come out of West Virginia, the Flatwoods Monster is by far the weirdest. But like any strange sighting or incident, people have a tendency to celebrate it. That is why anyone who enters Flatwoods without knowledge of their local boogeyman might be a bit amused. But amusement was not the prevailing emotion when the Flatwoods Monster appeared to local residents one night in 1952.
On the evening of September 12, 1952, three young boys, Fred and Edward May of Flatwoods and their friend Tommy Hyer, saw a bright object soar across the sky and land on a nearby farm.
The three boys ran to Fred and Edward's house to tell Mrs. May that they just saw a UFO land in the hills.
Intrigued, Mrs. May, along with the three boys, local kid Ronnie Shaver, and local teens Neil Nunley and Eugene Lemon, went to the location of the landing to determine what the boys had actually seen. As they approached the area where the UFO landed, Lemon's dog ran ahead of them and out of sight. Suddenly, the dog began to bark and ran back to the group, its tail tucked between its legs. As they crested the top of the hill, they saw a "pulsating ball of fire." This was accompanied by a mist carrying an acrid odor that made their eyes and nose burn.
What they saw next terrified them to their bones and gave rise to a local legend.
As the pungent mist surrounded them, Lemon noticed two red lights underneath an oak tree. When he shined his light on that area, he saw the monster staring back at them. They described it as seven feet tall with a dark body and glowing red eyes. It's elongated head was shaped like a diamond, with a large cowl behind it. Its body was described as "inhumanly shaped," and the lower half of its body was covered with an exoskeleton that was vaguely shaped like a skirt. Some of the witnesses said it had no arms while others said its arms were thin and spindly, with long fingers shaped like claws. The witnesses claim the creature bounded towards them. Terrified, they fled. After the event, several of the witnesses suffered from sickness, including nose irritation, throat swelling, vomiting and convulsions. The doctor who treated the witnesses said the symptoms they were suffering were similar to the symptoms of mustard gas exposure. It is believed that the mist caused their illnesses.
This strange creature, who most Ufologists believe is an alien, has been a part of West Virginia folklore ever since.
While it's most popular name is The Flatwoods Monster, it is also called The Braxton County Monster, or simply The Green Monster. Artifacts, such as newspaper clippings and drawings by the witnesses, can be viewed at the Green Monster Museum all year round.
If you go to Flatwoods, its hard not to notice evidence of the monster everywhere, especially during its annual festival. It also has garnered many pop culture references in video games, TV and music, including an episode of The History Channel's "MonsterQuest."
Like other cryptids in popular folklore, such as the Mothman or Bigfoot, The Flatwoods Monster has found a place in popular culture, leaving people to ponder the existence of unexplainable creatures in an otherwise explainable world.
What are some of your favorite legendary creatures? Feel free to comment below and join the discussion.
To learn more about West Virginia folklore, check out
this spooky urban legend.