Ohio’s Grassmen

Posted by: Loren Coleman on June 18th, 2008

Thank goodness the ghosts are gone. It’s back to monsters this evening folks, so let’s celebrate.

Tonight’s “MonsterQuest” is about the “Ohio Grassman,” one of the local names for the Eastern Bigfoot-types reported in this Midwestern state, a bona-fide cryptid. It also features good guy, well-known Ohio Bigfoot conference organizer and Cleveland Indians fan Don Keating.

don mq

Don Keating describes a plaster casting he has in his collection from early 1991 for the History Channel’s program “MonsterQuest.” The casting is from a series of five footprints discovered near Newcomerstown. Photo provided by the History Channel

tim don

Radio talk show host Tim Binnall & Don Keating at the Mass Monster Mash, October 13, 2007. binnall photo.

Don Keating of Cambridge, a former Newcomerstown resident and the originator of the Eastern Ohio Bigfoot Investigation Center, will be featured on [an] episode of the History Channel’s “MonsterQuest” miniseries.

The episode, to be broadcast [June 18, 2008] at 9 p.m. [Eastern USA Time Zone] is titled “Ohio Grassman.”
* * *
Keating said he was first contacted about being involved with the “MonsterQuest” production in mid-February. He said one of the program’s producers and a cameraman were in Ohio from late February to early March “shooting interviews and conducting day and night research.”

Keating was interviewed for several different parts of the show, as were residents of Noble County, Canton and Sunbury, the latter who claim to have sighted a Bigfoot at Salt Fork State Park near Cambridge in late December 2006.

He said he’s not sure how much of his interviews and nighttime research will be included in the show, but estimates it will be “a good bit.”New Philadelphia, Ohio, Times Reporter


There exists one small book on the topic of this region’s unknown hairy hominoids, fashioned by Chris Murphy, entitled Bigfoot Encounters in Ohio: Quest for the Grassman. It covers a bit about the work of Keating and other Ohio researchers (such as Joedy Cook, George Clappison, and Matt Moneymaker). The Grassman lists and sighting reports are framed by material on Sasquatch in general.

Here is the History Channel overview of the Ohio program tonight:

“MonsterQuest : Ohio Grassman”
Airs on Wednesday June 18 09:00 PM Eastern
MonsterQuest : Ohio Grassman
Also airs on Thursday June 19 01:00 AM Eastern
Just miles from the industrial cities of Ohio, there is a bogeyman that has terrified local children for over a century. According to stories and sightings, the Grassman is similar to a Bigfoot, but builds strange nests and has been known to attack. Can science help explain this creature? Is a primate skull, a strange print and a new video the first direct proof behind the legendary Grassman? We’ll sift through the existing evidence and take to the skies in a search for what is stalking Ohio.

Meanwhile, the “Vampire Beast” episode is repeated tonight too, twice on the History Channel.

MonsterQuest : Vampire Beast
Airs on Wednesday June 18 08:00 PM
Also airs on Thursday June 19 12:00 AM
In the fall of 2007, residents of Bolivia, North Carolina started losing pets and farm animals to an unknown creature. Is it the same mystery predator with a taste for blood that preyed on goats and dogs in Bolivia more than 50 years ago? One-part history, one-part science and one part monsters, take a look at legendary creatures around the world.

(By the way, I understand that Don Keating may not be a great fan of the “Grassman” moniker, but after this evening, Keating’s name probably will be tied to that beast’s local label in the general public’s mind for years to come.)

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

32 Responses to “Ohio’s Grassmen”

  1. Cryptid Hunt21 responds:

    I’ve always been interested in the Grassman since I was 10 years old. Since Monster Quest did a good job on Sasquatch Attack and the Giant Squid, I think they will find something interesting in this episode.

  2. sschaper responds:

    A skull?? If its provenance can be unimpeachably ascertained, then we would be able to answer the other question on this site: what is it?

  3. HulkSmashNow responds:

    Yeah, that “Lizzie Borden House Ghosts” episode was a big fat zero in terms of entertainment and the team’s finding of anything. I love “MonsterQuest,” but let’s get back to the monsters!

  4. byondbyond responds:

    seems the 2nd series is digging deep to find anything interesting. so far i’m not impressed

  5. bill green responds:

    hey loren & everyone im definetly looking forward to watching monsterquest new segment ohio grassman. yes im sure don keating & researchers etc did great interviews for tonight. im getting excited… thanks bill green 🙂

  6. Shane Durgee responds:

    Saw him at the Monster Mash in Mass. I enjoyed his presentation, but the evidence definitely seemed lacking. Someone in a white track suit walking along a pond about a mile away.

    BTW, I like ghosts!

  7. Matt_J responds:

    I’m still not sure why they picked the Lizzie Borden house. Ghost Hunters was there earlier and came up with a big, fat nothing, as well. They even told the owner that people were seeing things based on the fact that they wanted to see things. I didn’t even bother to watch last week.

    While the monster hogs episode was a little…meh…I did find the Beast of Bladenboro entertaining, but that might be because I live in North Carolina. I guess we’ll see how tonight goes.

  8. vampchick21 responds:

    I rather liked the Lizzy Borden episode. For a start, paranormal is my main area of interest (although yes, I have been watching MonsterQuest for the monsters), and I’ve been long listening to the podcast for the investigators who were featured in that episode. There’s more going on at that house than two edited for TV shows are going to provide. Never mind that ghosts, like monsters, rarely if ever perform upon demand/request. (the podcast in question aired several EVPs that did not go on the show.)

    That said, I prefer that MQ keeps it to the ‘monsters’, that’s the whole reason I watch the program in the first place. Looking forward to tonight’s episode.

  9. maslo63 responds:

    I could have sworn tonights episode was about giant snakes, guess I was wrong. I’m also glad the ghost episode is out of the way, I found it deadly boring.

  10. vampchick21 responds:

    Oh, and thanks for the book info Loren. 🙂 The info has been added to my birthday ‘want’ list that goes to my parents. I’ve found that I enjoy crypto-books very much these days!

  11. red_pill_junkie responds:

    He! that Bigfoot in the cover of the book looks stoned. I reckon that’s why they call him ‘Grassman’ in Ohio 😉

  12. sausage1 responds:

    Close, RPJ. It’s an early publicity shot of Charlie Watts.

    When is this series coming to the UK? It’s so frustrating reading these posts you guys put up and not having a clue what you are watching.

    Not that we are THAT much behind over here where this sort of programming is concerned, but our last televisual crytpo-feast was a black & white film about people who claim to have seen a huge white bear like creature in the Canadian Arctic, and a member of ARSE (the Ancient & Royal Skeptikal Enquirers) wearing a dinner jacket and dickie bow saying it was “a misidentification of one of those eskimo chappies hunting on all fours, don’t you know, what?”

  13. cryptidsrus responds:

    Looking forward to the “Grassman” episode tonight as well…

    The Lizzie Borden house episode was OK but out of synch with the rest of the series. I guess they’re getting desperate for new subjects, like I’ve said before.

    Looks like an interesting cryptid.

  14. erykmynn responds:

    Just my $0.02 after watching the whole first season via iTunes… It seems like about half of the episodes are awesome and the other are a mixed bag. I’m guessing its just a budget thing. They obviously dump way more money and effort into the more promising/interesting quests and then fill out the season with some filler shows. Nothing wrong with that, just the way TV works. If every one had to be killer then there would only be 5-6 episodes per season max……

  15. Hawkeye responds:

    Being from Ohio I am really looking forward to this episode

  16. Jeremy sims responds:

    i think that the sasquatches came throught to ohio and michigan and all those other states during the 80s when mount saint helens erupted and destroyed alot of there habitat for a while and they moved to alot of other states and made stable population and stayed.

  17. bill green responds:

    hey loren & researchers, i just finished watching monsterquest segment the ohio grassman wow it was very wonderful. the reactements of the eyewittnesses accounts were awesome very detailed. both researchers don keating & joedy cook did a wonderful job in this new segment indeed A+++. this new segment realy helped me realy understand all about the ohio sasquatch creatures im sure it will help you all out with your research as well. thanks bill green 🙂

  18. Spinach Village responds:

    The hand cast, nest and vocal recording was intriguing, and the stories…

    The Video was interesting, but inclusive, the color of the “blob” was odd though…. but its just too inconclusive to comment on further

    Hey Jeremy’ Sasquatch sightings in Ohio go far back past the 80’s

  19. rl_esteves responds:

    This was a good episode. I wish they would go after some of the subjects that Destination Truth on Scifi channel investigate instead of some of the subjects they’ve covered on Monster Quest, such as the mutant canine, giant fish, giant squid, and the upcoming giant snake episode.Love the show, own the first season on dvd, but they could do better with choice of subjects. Argentina seems to have quite a few subjects lately that would be nice to see on Monster Quest (imps, hairy dwarves, and the Lobizon, to name a few).

  20. Amdusias responds:

    This had to be the worst episode ever. The skull, hut, video, etc. This was an awful collection of un-proof, climaxed by a guy giving the now obligatory “bigfoot call” into the woods at night, to which nothing replied. There should have been a disclaimer at the beginning:

    “Warning, nothing interesting actually happens this episode. Bigfoot is not discussed here in any way that hasn’t already been done better in another episode…”

    Might as well have done a clip show.

  21. Shane Durgee responds:

    My armshchair reactions to this episode:

    The heat blob that the disco helicopter cam picked up seemed to be an animal in a tree. A porcupine or an owl.

    The nest and hand cast were really interesting, especially the nest, as that’s the first I’ve seen of anything like that (I’m sure you guys know all about bigfoot nests). We rarely discuss theories about where these things actually sleep and seem to focus instead on where they’ve been sighted. I assumed caves, or deep in the bogs. If they make structures I’d have thought that we’d have found them ages ago. Well, apparently the elements can take these things apart in a matter of weeks. Anyway it gives us something more to look for, since a large stationary structure is much easier to find than a shy, moving animal. Assuming that it was in fact made by one of these animals.

    Also, seeing Keating reminded me of a great anecdote from the Monster Mash in Bridgwater this past Halloween. After Keating finished his presentation on the white sasquatch, which incidentally involved another video catch that wasn’t shown on Monster Quest (though it wasn’t very good anyway), he waited for questions.

    One of the previous guests (forgive me, I can’t remember his name), a ufologist who had presented a UFO crash case earlier, crossed his arms in defiance and said simply, “Scat.”

    Keating looked bewildered, not sure if he was being asked to jump into some Ella Fitzgerald improve vocal stylings or what.

    “Scat,” he said again. “If these animals are real, then why havn’t we found their scat?”

    My girlfriend and I had to stifle laughter. Of all the things that could have been bugging this ufologist-yet-bigfoot-skeptic, it was because we havn’t found poop in the woods.

    I can’t remember Keating’s reply, only that it was brief, vague, and hopefully enough to rein in the whole scat controversy.

  22. Amdusias responds:

    There are some things about the nest that really put me off.

    1) It is unique. If it were common thing for a bigfoot to build, and stationary, and large, sightings of them should outnumber sightings of the actual animals. The only exception to that would be if bigfoot could fly. You see more birds than bird nests because there isn’t much cover in the sky. 🙂

    2) When they went back, it was “mowed down”. The entire area was “mowed down”. So this thing was in striking distance of civilazation (like a backyard) if I take that description literally.

    3) Finding a makeshift structure in the woods, near a comunity with teenagers, is not uncommon. What links this with bigfoot in any way? Don’t get me wrong, I believe it was built by primates and was used for mating. 🙂

    Now on my HD TV the video looks like a deer. When you watch the video, notice the dark blob that precedes the white blob. The dark blob looks like the front part of a deer, and the smaller white blob looks like white shank markings, topped with a white tail, but that’s just me.

    Heh..yeah I totally blocked out the disco-copter. Nice touch to an otherwise blah episode.

  23. twoly responds:

    I love reading this blog and have been excited about Monster Quest. I realize that we are not going to find out about someone finding bigfoot on a Discovery Channel show… If someone found Bigfoot it would be all over the news before the episode ever aired, but the exciting part is the experts that they have talking about the evidence and how it helps prove or disprove the existance of crypto creatures. SInce I am from Minnesota it was also nice to see them using experts from around here.

    I did however have several technical issues with this episode:
    Why was the camera not able to zoom in to a level that gave us more than a tiny colored blob with no detail.
    Why would you set up everything to run this helicopter at night for 10-15 minutes (they stated it was running for 8 minutes and had only a few minutes of power left) and not have several backup batteries available to send it right back out as soon as the 10-15 minutes ran out. Why not have a charger on site so you can recharge the batteries while the backup batteries are running and track the woods all night?
    The decoy was the most rediculous thing I have ever seen. If they had taken pictures of the Grass Man in front of it he would probably have been laughing as I was.
    We are looking for a primate that has been hiding from people for years… might a helicopter spook it and cause it to hide?
    No one has captured them on infrared or motion sensor cameras… Might they have sight that goes into the infra-spectrum like dogs (or the Predator) to be able to avoid triggering the sensors?

    I liked that they were taking a unique approach to covering the area and were talking about the decoy and getting Grass Man to confront it. The Helicopter was also a good idea since it can cover more ground but they need to plan it out better.

    I am happy to have a show like this on the air and give some credibility to Cryptozoologists but this episode did not seemed to be very well planned (Or maybe funded)

  24. Spinach Village responds:

    i was referring to the walking blob, i forgot about the other one, yeah that didn’t look significant (its a forest so they should see small round blobs)

    I have read about and seen (youtube for example) purported bigfoot nest both in trees and on ground before …

    Gorillas make nest in trees when it rains and next on ground when its dry (i seen that on animal planet once)… so its not a far stretch to think bigfoots might do something similar

  25. Shane Durgee responds:

    The decoy was the most rediculous thing I have ever seen.

    haha I forgot about the decoy!

  26. gridbug responds:

    Actually enjoyed the Grassman episode quite a bit, though I share the frustrations mentioned above. Also, glad to see they’re getting better at the digitally inserted creatures in the re-enactments. Grassman looking in the window? Yikesaroonie!

  27. clman1 responds:

    Most impressive thing was the glow in the dark R/C helicopter. Very cool toy, although you would figure they would have a spare battery.

  28. rayrich responds:

    Lame to say the least, save for the eyewitness accounts. These weekend expeditions don’t cut it especially with cameras around. Stick with real eyewitness accounts and dramatize them like the old ‘Mysterious Monsters’ movie narrated by Peter Graves. That along with the ‘Legend of Boggy Creek’ were by far the best documentaries.

  29. Lyndon responds:

    sausage 1 wrote:

    “”When is this series coming to the UK? It’s so frustrating reading these posts you guys put up and not having a clue what you are watching.””


    I’m in the U.K and Ive seen all of these past Monsterquest episodes on You Tube. All of season 1 should be on there if you search.

    No doubt, season 2 should be up soon.

  30. Lu Ann Lewellen responds:

    I saw most of the show but kept falling asleep so I may have missed this.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the handprint cast Jimmy Chilcutt was examining turn out to be from an impression made by the hand of a dead Gorilla? The indented fingertips indicated a dead or dying animal.

    Gorilla hand ashtrays used to be popular and provided profit for poachers.

  31. mystery_man responds:

    Shane Durgee- That story about the scat is hilarious! What a bizarre thing to home in on and criticize, especially coming from a UFO researcher. That’s my new line I’m going to use from now on for anytime I don’t think there is any evidence for a theory or if some evidence is very shaky. Scat.

  32. sausage1 responds:

    Thanks, Lyndon.

    I have seen most of the first series on YouTube, none of the second lot yet.

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