ENCOUNTERS, ENCOUNTERS, ENCOUNTERS
Keeping on .......
These things tend to sneak up on me with more complications than I, or you, need. The original idea was to just open the firehose of interesting encounters and let the River flow. Sorry I've felt obligated to slow things down with dreaded "analysis" too much. Let's do better today.
So, back to those pictures of the previous post: Let's start with this little fellow.
Superstition Mountains, NM. early 20th century.
Neat case --- a good ol' Scottish/Celtic dwarf in the SW of the United States.
The tale comes from an Arizona travel magazine titled Arizona Days and Ways (December 31, 1961.) The provenance of the story is that the young man who was the witness was the son of a ranch hand. The young man told his story directly to his father and the ranch owner just after it allegedly happened. That rancher passed it on to the writer of the magazine piece.
The tale: The young man was a helper on the ranch, who often rode alone looking after cattle and strays. This day he was riding along a high ridge's edge, not quite at the top. Just above him, 5, perhaps 6 little men seemed to pop out of the crevices in the rocks.
They were three feet tall, and dressed in brown with shiny bands of cloth wrapped round their heads. They had long white beards. One of them had a plumed feather sticking from his headband, and acted as if he was the leader. He began haranguing the others, but the young man couldn't understand the words. The others circled round him, and were concerned about the human, pointing to where he had tried to lie in hiding.
The leader ultimately apparently made some decision, as talk stopped, and, waving his hand, the whole troop disappeared into the cliff face. Our witness was stunned, remounted his horse, and rode for a bit. A terrific lethargy hit him and he felt that he had to take a nap. As he dismounted and lay down, he could still see the cliff face where the dwarves had disappeared. He was recalling his father's and other ranch hand's telling him about Little Men of these mountains, some of whom speculated that they were ghosts --- perhaps ghosts of old miners who had died here.
He napped or half-napped for a while. He didn't know if he truly fell asleep or not. He then dreamt or day-dreamt that the plumed banded leader of the dwarves came down the cliff towards him. The leader had seemed to dig into the cliffside and extract something before he descended. Coming to where the young man lay, the plumed dwarf forced whatever it was into the entranced man's hand. His whiskers brushed the young man's face and awakened him --- but the dwarf was nowhere to be seen. In the witness' hand was a piece of White Quartz liberally flecked with what looked like gold. He could not recall ever having picked this up on his own.
Again he scrambled up the cliff looking for signs of the dwarves. There was nothing but a gouge in the rockface. He got on his horse and rode home, telling everyone everything.
No one believed him. The next day, he, his father, and the ranch owner rode to the spot to look for whatever they could find. They found only one enigmatic thing: small footprints. The owner opined that they could be from children, or just maybe .... The ranch's other owner dismissed the entire tale as a waking dream. Was it?
I'm prepared to buy off on the waking dream for the second stage of the story --- in fact that resonates well with me ....... but that first half ....... if his activities were at all honestly described, that first encounter should have been in FAR too alert a state to have been something from the hypnagogic mind.
The quartz? Who knows? Lots of that about in "them there hills."
Let's try this fellow next:
This story comes from that whackiest of all anomalists and my treasured personal friend, Jerry Clark --- courtesy of his book HIDDEN REALMS (a rocking good read.)
Jerry harvested this tale via an interview with the deceased husband's (one of four witnesses) wife. Given my confidence in Jerry, that's good credibility for me.
The tale: A young teenager was in an auto with his Dad and family when the car ran out of gas. A farmer happened along and offered that he had extra gas at his farm if someone wanted to retrieve it. The boy "volunteered" to make that walk and return with the fuel.
As he was walking back under a moonlit night, and he alone at that point in his journey, there ahead of him came a marching troop of little men. Twenty little men --- their height is not (sadly again) stated, but "little men" feels to me like two to three feet tall. They were bald, all dressed in leather kneepants with suspenders. No shirts. Very pale skin. They trudged along mumbling as they went. They paid no attention to the young man at all --- something that he was grateful for. Once well past, he fled as fast as he could to his family.
He was treated unkindly by those he told the story to, but his wife defended his veracity in the following charming way: "My husband was not an imaginative person at all. He had no imagination whatsoever." Hah! and right on.
I like this case despite Jerry having anything to do with it :=}}.
PERM, Russia, Ural Mountain area 1905.
Dr. J. Allen Hynek was recently retired from his job as USAF UFO consultant and putting together his Center for UFO Studies when someone that he knew from Washington DC wrote him a letter describing a rather incredible (by any standards) story. This is an incident which had occurred to himself when he was 11 or 12 years old.
The story: There was a large and mainly abandoned Orthodox cathedral which contained many stairs and outer steps, which young men liked to "try" themselves by climbing. There were 8 or 10 of them (including the ultimate witness) this time. The boys did what they always did, raced to the different heights and rang the several bells which still existed in the structure.
The witness had orders from his father to be home at a certain time, and begged off (resulting in much mockery by his companions.) But he left alone and descended to the lower floor. Ready to turn homeward, he noticed a red light issuing from a corridor. It seemed fiery in color, so he poked his head down that corridor. There to his surprise and puzzlement was a ring of fiery light which covered the corridor some distance away.
Thinking it might actually BE a fire, the witness began to walk closer. After a few more feet, it became obvious that there was something inside that ellipse of fire --- something black and moving ... something with a humanoid body, ugly face, all black ... and "demonic?"
The thing looked VERY demon-like indeed. Large ears, large eyes like owls, small nose, wide mouth with protruding tongue, creating a ghastly face on a four-foot tall body. The thing seemed to dance inside the ring and mock him.
This boy had a father who had taught him that there were no such things as demons, and the boy was less afraid than some might be. Plus, he thought that maybe (although he had no idea how) his friends were behind this. He started to yell at the thing and shake his fists, but the closer he tried to get, the thing floated and danced away, always mocking. As the movements went on, he realized that his friends could not possibly have anything to do with this --- and he became very afraid. Then, when the thing just disappeared, he began to shake.
He immediately fled home and was put to bed by his father.
It is odd that over all these years he told the story to dozens of people and ended up thinking that a UFO expert might be able to help him explain the thing. Well, THIS UFO expert can't help you, and neither did Allen Hynek.
This is VERY unlike a UFO case, and not much like typical Little People reports. It doesn't really have the feel of an apparition either, though it is at least inside an old historical structure. It, in short, really isn't much like anything.
IF it's a true story (let's allow that for the moment for discussion purposes), what is it MOST like? Some, I know, would say "a Demon." It's also a bit like one of those ugly and tricky denizens of Faery called Boggarts. I guess if pressed I'd put a very small vote in for the latter.
The MAORI District of New Zealand, 1920.
This report is from Edward Gardner's book featuring the Cottingley Fairies.
After the events surrounding the fairy incidents, publicity was all over the world. People wrote to both Gardner and A Conan Doyle to tell them of fairy encounters that they thought they had in their own lives. This particular one was written to Gardner from New Zealand. It's unusual, but what in this business isn't?
The story: A family had built a new home in a rural area. the land around had been flattened in anticipation of more houses to come. The lady of the house had gone outside to hang washing on an outdoor clothesline. As she walked to the spot with the clothesline, she heard a distant rumbling. She thought that it sounded like horses galloping. She looked about, spotting nothing. Puzzled, she went to the line and raised her arms up to position the clothespins.
With her arms raised, suddenly a troop of small ponies rode right beneath her arms. Each pony had a small rider. they were brown-skinned and dressed in all brown. They were about 2 foot tall, the size of very small boys. She thought of them as miniature Maoris. She then excitedly claimed "Goodness! What is this?" The miniature horsemen then bolted and soon disappeared in the distance. When asked by her daughter what just happened, the mother said that she had just seen the fairies ride.
There ARE very old legends among the Maori people about fairy-like small persons allegedly present before even they got to the islands.
Vaucluse, LA. 1891
I don't know at all what to think about this one. It's not that it's any stranger than some we've visited, but I don't like the provenance. I bumped into it on an internet website --- about the worst of sources. So I tried to follow up. The original as far as I can get is from the book ALONG THE RIVER ROAD by Mary Ann Sternberg. The story there is in quotes but without a reference. I'm left to assume that the story is from some newspaper. ??? so .... ???
Well anyway, here's the tale: a local resident, supposedly well-respected, was out hunting(?) in the swamps, when a large being came into view. It was about 30-50 yards away.
It was a nine-foot tall male, very hairy and with a long black beard. NOT like a bigfoot case though, in that the giant had a body-length brown cloak of some brownish-colored fur. It itself had red hair (despite the black beard.)
The witness was very brave and called out to the giant. He was ignored. The giant moved on with a "sad and serious look." Later, tracks were found that there were 23 inches long.
Good incident? "Modern" Giant? Part of Faery? --- if the story happened, and the details were accurate, then this would not be a human genetic freak. The well-known acromegalics run about seven to seven and a half foot tall. ... not nine foot tall. Even the famous Alton Giant --- the modern world's record holder --- did not hit nine feet, though at 8'11" we can give him that. What we cannot give him would be the ability/health to live in the woods on his own. Despite being tremendously strong, Robert Wadlow only lived to be 22 years old.
Pro wrestler Andre the Giant was "only" 7'4" but quite massive compared to an acromegalic. ... and obviously quite athletic for his size. A massive seven foot four hairy human who was fairly light on his feet would have been quite the "Giant" in the olden times when the average guy was only 5'5" or so.
Still, the Vaucherie giant seems just outside any reasonable genetic freak hypothesis, but adding in human poor judgement of details and the soft provenance of the case anyway, I can't get too fired up for this one.
I do know that if I opened up the elevator door and saw this, I'd have a few strange ideas.
Till next time .....