the difference between bipedal creatures across the globe
The word Sasquatch is derived from the Coast Salish tribe’s language; specifically the word, Sasq’ets, meaning “wild man” or “hairy man.” J.W. Burns established the term “Sasquatch” in the 1930s when he acted as an Indian agent assigned to the Chehalis Band, otherwise known as the Sts’ailes First Nation. The Sts’ailes people claim a close bond with Sas’qets, and believe it has the ability to switch from the physical to the spiritual world.
In 1884, an article regarding Sasquatch was published in Victoria’s British Colonist. It is known as the earliest documented evidence of a Sasquatch sighting. The article follows the quest of local village men chasing down and capturing a “half man, half beast” near Yale, British Columbia. When villagers found the creature near a set of railroad tracks, they nicknamed it “Jacko.” After waking the creature from unconsciousness, they chased it all the way to a set of bluffs above the town. The men were said to have corralled “Jacko” onto a rock shelf and rendered him unconscious with the toss of a rock. Two days later, the newspaper ran a letter to J.B. Good, former superintendent of the Lytton Indian Mission. Good wrote that similar stories of “wild men of the woods” had been told by indigenous groups that encountered such creatures while out hunting. During the summer of 2011, a British Columbia man shot a video showing a possible Sasquatch traveling swiftly up a mountain range in the Tantalus Mountains near Squamish.
Sasquatch is reported to range between 6-9ft tall and is covered in thick black or brown hair.
Bigfoot, United States
The first mention of the name, "Bigfoot" can be traced back to a construction worker named Jerry Crew who presented a plaster cast of a huge footprint he had found in Bluff Creek Valley to a local newspaper office in Northern California. He reported strange activity and huge tracks around the construction site; causing Crew and his buddies to nickname the creature, “Bigfoot.” On October 5, 1958, The Humbolt Times printed his story accompanied by a picture of him holding up the footprint cast, which spanned more than half the length of his upper body. The title of the article read: "New 'Sasquatch' found - it's called Bigfoot." Once published, the name took off and became the coined term for the creature.
Bigfoot is reported to range between 6-9ft tall and is covered in thick black or brown hair. (Click Read More)
Aboriginal communities claim to have named the yowie prior to White men settling in the area. However, it is believed that white man contact with the yowie was first documented more formally than the aboriginal’s word of mouth on December 9th, 1882 in The Australian Town and Country Journal. Amateur scientist, Henry James McCooey described his own encounter with a strange creature in bushland between Batemans Bay and Ulladulla. The written document of his sighting reads:
"A few days ago I saw one of these strange animals in an unfrequented locality on the coast between Bateman's Bay and Ulladulla. My attention was attracted to it by the cries of a number of small birds which were pursuing and darting at it. When I first beheld the animal it was standing on its hind legs, partly upright, looking up at the birds above it in the bushes, blinking its eyes and distorting its visage and making a low chattering kind of noise. Being above the animal on a slight elevation and distant from it less than a chain, I had ample opportunity of noting its size and general appearance.
"I should think that if it were standing perfectly upright it would be nearly 5ft high. It was tailless and covered with very long black hair, which was of a dirty red or snuff-colour about the throat and breast. Its eyes, which were small and restless, were partly hidden by matted hair that covered its head. The length of the fore legs or arms seemed to be strikingly out of proportion with the rest of its body, but in all other respects its build seemed to be fairly proportional. It would probably weigh about 8st. On the whole it was a most uncouth and repulsive looking creature, evidently possessed of prodigious strength, and one which I should not care to come to close quarters with. Having sufficiently satisfied my curiosity, I throw a stone at the animal, whereupon it immediately rushed off, followed by the birds, and disappeared in a ravine which was close at hand."
In addition to McCooey’s account, many other settlers in the area reported a creature with a similar description.
The Yowie is described to range from 4-10 ft tall, with longer arms than its torso. It is said to be covered in reddish-brown hair.
The Yeti is the subject of many ancient legends and folklore of the Himalaya people. The majority of the stories portray the Yeti as a figure of danger, acting as a warning to stay close and safe within the community. When Alexander the Great conquered the Indus Valley in 326 B.C., he demanded to see a Yeti, however according to National Geographic, local people warned him that they could not return with a Yeti, being that the creatures would not survive at such low altitudes.
When more Westerners started traveling to the Himalayas, the myth gained more attention. In 1921, a journalist named Henry Newman interviewed a group of British explorers who had just returned from a Mount Everest expedition. They informed the journalist that they had encountered several large footprints which their guides were sure came from "metoh-kangmi," meaning "man-bear snow-man." Newman correctly translated the "snowman" part, however mistranslated "metoh" as "filthy." After consideration, Newman decided that "abominable" sounded even better and used the iconic name, “abominable snowman” in the paper. This name is often attributed to the Yeti, which is the name given to the creature by Tibetan people, meaning "bear of a rocky place."
The Yeti is reported to range from 4-6ft and is covered in thick, brown or grey hair.
In 1922, the discovery of the Shennongjia polar bear sparked some credibility in the legend of the Yeren. This “polar bear” is a creature inhabiting the same geographic region as the Yeren and whose existance was changed from cryptid to a scientifically recognized animal.
On May 14th, 1976, a group of Communist Party officials allegedly encountered a Yeren, which sparked a series of expeditions resulting in the casting of many footprints. Today, there are over 400 reported sightings of the Yeren. Recently, there was a significant encounter that changed Chinese governmental views about the Yeren. A journalist from Wuhan and a local politician were driving with a few forestry scientists near the top of the highlands. At a very close range, they observed a Yeren crossing the road in front of their vehicle. This group of witnesses were all credible professionals, and their encounter was taken seriously by the Chinese government. An enormous statue of a mother Yeren and her young welcomes visitors to a special area reserved in the Shennongjia National Nature Reserve for Yerens to reside. The Chinese government is not shy to acknowledge the existence of the Yeren as a real creature, unlike the governments of Canada and the U.S.
The Yeren is described to be 4-8ft tall with reddish-brown hair, and arms that swing down to its toes.
Around the world, there have been sightings of similar bipedal, primitive beings roaming the dense forests and jungles. The creatures detailed above are only a few of the many names this biped goes by. Have you traveled to a country that has their own version of a Bigfoot? Let us know in the comments below!
Simpson, Hayley. “This Canadian Province Has More Than 200 Reported Bigfoot Sightings.”Culture Trip, 10 July 2017, theculturetrip.com/north-america/canada/articles/this-canadian-province-has-more-than-200-reported-bigfoot-sightings/.
Thomas, Nicki. “Sasquatch.” The Canadian Encyclopedia, www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/sasquatch/.
Campbell, Ian. “Batemans Bay Yowie Sighting an Australian First.” ABC South East NSW, 8 Dec. 2014, www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2014/12/09/4145054.htm.
“A Brief History of Bigfoot in North America.” Destination America, 29 July 2016, www.destinationamerica.com/thehauntist/a-brief-history-of-bigfoot-in-north-america/.
Radford, Benjamin. “The Yeti: Asia's Abominable Snowman.” LiveScience, Purch, 27 Nov. 2017, www.livescience.com/25072-yeti-abominable-snowman.html.
Green, Stewart. “Yeti Legends and Lore: Mysterious Creature of the Himalayas.” ThoughtCo, www.thoughtco.com/yeti-legend-755946.
China Bigfoot Update 2015, www.bfro.net/news/china_bigfoot_update_2015.asp.