Friday, August 26, 2011

The Wild Man of Ocheesee Pond - A 19th Century Bigfoot Capture in Jackson County?

Ocheesee Pond
One of the most startling yet least known Bigfoot stories in American history originated in the cypress swamps of Ocheesee Pond in 1883-1884. It also has the potential to be one of the most important in the long story of the legendary creature.
If the stories that went up the Chattahoochee River by steamboat from Jackson County in August of 1884 are true, then the county was the scene of one of the only documented captures of a Bigfoot in American history.

For those who don't keep up with such things, Bigfoot (or Sasquatch, as he is sometimes known) is said to be a gigantic, hair-covered creature that roams the remote woods, swamps and forests of North America. He is traditionally associated with the Pacific Northwest, but every part of the country has a Bigfoot of its own. The area around Two Egg and Parramore in eastern Jackson County, for example, has its Stump Jumper, while the South Florida version is usually called the Skunk Ape.

Swamps of Ocheesee Pond
Most fans of the creature do not realize that it was actually well known in the South decades before its first documented appearance in Washington and Oregon. In the 19th century, sightings of large hairy creatures were often reported as the frontiers of the United States rapidly spread out from the Atlantic seaboard. People of that day and age, however, called him the "Wild Man."

In the winter of 1883-1884, a Wild Man appeared at Ocheesee Pond, a large wetland covering nearly 9 square miles in southeastern Jackson County. Most of the pond is covered by a vast cypress swamp, although there are some stretches of open water - most notably its southern arm, and the human-like creature was often spotted roaming the swamps or swimming from place to place.

As eyewitness accounts of his presence increased, local residents - many of them former Confederate soldiers - met and launched an expedition to capture the Wild Man of Ocheesee Pond. In August of 1884, they succeeded!

To read the complete story of the Wild Man of Ocheesee Pond, please visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/ocheeseewildman.

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