THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF STORIES AND INVESTIGATIONS FOUND IN MY NEW BOOK.
Huge Ape Reported Seen At Blue Creek
By WILLIE JACOBS
Democrat Staff Writer
(July 20, 1960)
BLUE CREEK- Is there a gorilla loose near this small community?
J.O. Conrad, his wife and son, who live here three miles east of Sherman on Highway 82, say they saw "a seven-foot gorilla or some kind of monster" Monday night near their home. His story came to light only Friday.
The animal has been reported seen near Bells by one other person. Some people merely shake their heads and smile at the story while others stand behind Conrad's report.
Gorilla or not the citizens of Blue Creek are keeping their doors locked tight and firearms handy.
Conrad said he had just gone to bed Monday night about 10:30 or 11. "I was smoking a cigarette when the dog started barking," he said. " I looked out the east window and saw him, He looked to be seven feet tall and about three feet wide across the back. He stood upright but hunched over."
At first glimpse Conrad said he thought it might be a man walking through his yard. "Then I saw it was too big to be a man," he explained. "I jumped out of bed and got my flashlight and gun." Mrs. Conrad and their son, James, 13, watched the creature from the bedroom window.
Conrad said he stepped off his front porch toward the animal and fired three times. "I know I hit him at least once. but he didn't even flinch. That's when I went after my shotgun," Conrad said.
Mrs. Conrad called the sheriff's office in Sherman. Deputies warned against shooting the animal, afraid a bullet wound would cause it to attack.
"I fired the shotgun over his head, but he didn't run, just shuffled of to the east down the side of the highway," Conrad continued. "I jumped in my car and followed. I got a real good look at him in my headlights while I was following him.
"He looked black as coal. He was real hairy except for his face," he said. "I was about 20 feet from him when I shot, and I didn't try to get closer. I was scared."
All the way to the Blue Creek bottom, a few hundred yards east of the community, Conrad said the animal swayed and shuffled slowly along on his back legs. "His front legs were just hanging down and swinging around," he said.
After the animal went into the underbrush at the creek, Conrad said he gave up the search, afraid to follow the beast in the brush.
Mrs. Curtis Wilson, who lives about 100 yards east of Conrad across the highway, said she and her husband were awakened shortly before Conrad saw the animal. "We heard something rattling around in the shrubbery beside the house, and our two dogs were going crazy," Mrs. Wilson said. "Then we heard something thump against the house and the dogs hushed, just like they had been turned off."
When her husband went outside, Mrs. Wilson said the dogs were cowering in a corner on the porch and "shaking just like somebody had whipped them."
At the same time, Mrs. Wilson said the Wilson's cows behind the house had begun an uproar. The Wilson's first thought of a wolf. "Then we heard Mr. Conrad shooting and my husband got his deer rifle. But by the time he got out to the highway, whatever it was had gone into the creek bottom brush," she said.
Mrs. Wilson said most of the people living near the community had kept their doors locked since. Conrad said his wife was so scared that she did not go to sleep the rest of the night and had to have medical treatment the next day.
W.B. Thompson of 716 S. Burdette, Sherman was working the same night at an all-night station in the Star community between Bells and Denison. He said a man drove into the station for gas and told him he had just seen a large, strange-looking animal along the roadside near Bells. Thompson did not get the man's name.
Conrad said that as he started to follow the beast in his car another car came down the highway approaching the animal from behind. "That fellow must have seen the gorilla because he threw on his brakes and almost stopped at the side of the animal. Then he stepped on it and got out of there. I thought he would stop and help me, but he must have been scared, too."
Grayson Sheriff's Deputy James Spaugh answered Mrs. Conrad's call for help. He said that as far as he is concerned "Conrad definitely saw something and it wasn't a man."
Next morning Conrad took his wife to the doctor. When he returned around noon, he could find no tracks on the hard dry ground. "Some men who work around here had drug a wrecked car over the spot where I saw that thing standing. There weren't any tracks left," he said.
Conrad said he had never seen a gorilla before. "I looked in my dictionary the next morning and found one. I know I saw a gorilla," he said.
At the suggestion of a possible hunt for the beast in the Blue Creek bottom, Conrad said: "With that gorilla down there? Not me, buddy. I'm scared."
When I joined the Texas Bigfoot Center in 2001 I was asked to investigate sightings in the northern part of the state into Arkansas along with Southern Oklahoma. Little did I realize that I would accumulate dozens of reports from this area over sixteen years of investigating. It soon became quite clear after a few years that there was a pattern of Bigfoot sightings on creeks that fed into the Red River that forms the border of Texas and Oklahoma. Interstate 35 runs north and south from Dallas to Oklahoma City and is the western edge of most Bigfoot sightings that I have followed up on. The reports spread sporadically from this area east to Miller County Arkansas which is home to the famous Fouke Monster. Most Bigfoot reports on each side of the river are separated by time and distance and usually have the commonality of being grouped into pockets of small towns or communities that sometimes have a moniker for their local monster such as the Callisburg Troll or Boggy Bottom Monster. These small communities are usually located near a lake or large forested region that is protected such as a wildlife management area. However, there are instances of man-like apes revealing themselves to unsuspecting and frightened individuals and are not usually seen in the same location again. Such was the case of the 1960 “gorilla” sighting near Sherman, Texas that was reported in the local newspaper. When I first heard of this story via the internet I was surprised that a Bigfoot was seen in this location but then I had to remember the story was nearly sixty years old and the countryside had changed a lot in that period of time. It was time to investigate the area for myself. I found the location of the sighting on Google Earth and drove to the tiny group of homes. It was getting near dark and I was looking for someone outside their home to approach, not wanting to knock on doors and causing possible alarm. Luckily a car pulled in front of me on Blue Creek Circle and I pulled over and I asked an elderly couple if they had any knowledge about the strange incident from 1960. I was amazed that the lady of the house had information for me. The woman had lived in this location for about thirty years when the road was first built which was not long enough to hear firsthand stories about the Blue Creek Bigfoot from 1960. To my great interest she claimed that neighbors had told her that an unusual large, dark animal of some sort had been haunting the nearby woods for as long as they could remember. The woman then said that she knew it to be true because she had her own encounter ten years earlier. She was walking her dog along the edge of Blue Creek late one afternoon when she noticed a strange structure made out of underbrush and saplings that she had never seen before. She approached the unusual dwelling and quickly saw that there was a large, black animal laying in it. The creature had remained motionless until she came too close and invaded its comfort zone. Her dog became anxious as though they were in a dangerous situation and pulled at its leash to return the way they came. It didn’t take much convincing from her dog to compel the woman to leave post-haste as she and the dog ran all the way back home. She concluded because of its size and the fact that it was covered in jet black hair that it could have been nothing but a Bigfoot. She kept the incident to herself and made sure not to venture into that part of the woods again. I thanked the lady and left her some information in case she came upon any more accounts of Bigfoot activity in the area. She thanked me and seemed interested and enthused to be of help and promised to ask friends for stories around the small neighborhood. Next I drove to a road to the east which named Independence Springs Road which is east of Blue Creek. This would be the logical area for the Bigfoot to proceed if it was seen by Mrs. Curtis Wilson later the same night as J.O. Conrad as described in the Sherman Democrat story. It was here I saw a young man shoveling rocks out of the back of his truck onto his driveway. I drove up next to him and explained what I was about and asked if he knew anything regarding the gorilla. He said no, he was somewhat of a skeptic. However, he claimed a bow hunter friend had claimed to have seen a Bigfoot near Bonham Lake several years ago. The friend would become angry if the subject was brought up because of being laughed at. Bonham is about thirty miles to the east of Sherman. Bonham Lake is near the Red River and there are areas of dense forest separating the lake from the river. He warmed to our conversation and he told me that he had hunted the Blue Creek bottoms and it wouldn’t be any problem for a Bigfoot to hide in this area, especially in the Choctaw Creek bottoms located nearby. Deer, hogs and other large animals inhabited the area in abundance. The young man also claimed to have seen large black cats and mountain lions near his home. My bet was that if a bottomland could support a mountain lion there would be no problem for a Bigfoot to find sustenance in such a habitat. Incidentally, Blue Creek feeds into Choctaw Creek that runs into the Red River. Choctaw Creek runs through Starr Road which is the location of the W.B. Thompson sighting near the end of the 1960 newspaper article. Once again I thanked the individual for his help and decided to leave the area just as the sun began to set. I couldn’t resist driving to the last house on this dead end road. I peered off into the dark tangled undergrowth that surrounded the little creek as I slowly drove through the twisting narrow blacktop lane. The winter sun was casting its last rays of light through the bare branches of the tall hardwood trees as I began to use my imagination. How did Mr. Conrad handle the realization that he had seen a gorilla from his bedroom window so many years ago, and how would I rationalize the same thing should I spot a gorilla from the window of my Jeep? Thoughts such as these are what has kept me investigating Bigfoot for the over a decade and I haven’t lost interest yet!