Mythology Monday: Mother. Fuckin. Mothman

Today, I’ve decided that I’m going talk about a cryptid, rather than a more traditional mythological beast. Because what are cryptids if not a modern mythology?

So, yeah, this post is about the Mothman.

The Mothman is a cryptid, or a critter than people have reported seeing, but hasn’t been scientifically proven to exist. This one hails from the land of West Virginia.

The first sighting of the Mothman was documents on November 12, 1966. So we have these five dude digging a grave at a cemetary near Clendenin, West Virginia. Suddenly, what appears to be a dude with wings swoops down from the trees over their heads and flies away. A few days later, on November 15th, two couples who were taking a drive at night report seeing a guy with glowing red eyes and a 10-foot wingspan caught in their car’s headlights.

More and more reportings of this creature continue for about a year, until December 15th 1967. This is when the Silver Bridge, which spans the Ohio River and connects Point Pleasant, West Virginia, to Gallipolis, Ohio, collapsed, killing 46 people. People in the area think that the Mothman sightings may have been connected to the bridge collapse.

Sightings of the Mothman have continued to be reported, not just in West Virginia but outside the country as well. People in Russia have reported seeing the Mothman just prior to the Russian Apartment Bombings in 1999. Because the Mothman is often associated with disaster, people who believe it exists believe that the creature can either predict disasters, or is outright causing them through some sort of curse.

The Mothman has also become pretty entrenched in popular culture. One of the first instances of this was the 1975 book The Mothman Prophecies, written by John Keel. The book was adapted into a rather forgettable Richard Gere vehicle of the same name in 2002. Fans of the podcast The Adventure Zone would also recognize him as a rather important supporting character in the show’s second season.

He’s so popular, in fact, that Point Pleasant erected a statue of him in 2002, to coincide with the first annual Mothman Festival, which has been held ever since.

Of course, there are skeptics. In 2016, a West Virginia TV station broadcasted an image taken by an anonymous photographer, purported to be of the Mothman. However, experts believe that it may have just been a large bird carrying a snake or a frog. Hell, when the original sightings occurred in the 1960s, people believed that people may have just been getting vague glimpses of an unusually large heron.

Whatever the case may be, the Mothman will live on in our hearts.

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One thought on “Mythology Monday: Mother. Fuckin. Mothman

  1. The ‘Skree’

    On April 15, or the year 1746 at Culloden More in the Highlands of Scotland, during the battle of Culloden, the warring troops were attacked by the ‘Skree’. Before it was deemed ‘Mothman’.

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