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Do Russians Have a Bigfoot Carcass?

Posted by: Loren Coleman on September 22nd, 2006

MN Iceman

Is there a Russian-held Bigfoot carcass, which, unlike the Minnesota Iceman pictured above here, still physically exists for examination?

Could the search for the best sea otter furs have resulted in the source of the best evidence for Bigfoot ever known?

Sometimes, during Coast to Coast AM with George Noory, surprising stories are shared during the call-ins.

In the last hour of the overnight appearance of Jeff Meldrum’s and John Bindernagel’s discussion of Bigfoot, September 21-22, an American living in the Ukraine telephoned into the talk-radio program. The credible-sounding individual had an intriguing account.

The man identified himself as an environmental scientist. After the fall of the Soviet Union, he was hired to do air-quality studies at the museum in the university in the changing Leningrad. While taking air samples in a three-level basement beneath the museum in 1992, he said he made a startling find. [St. Petersburg was founded in 1703 by Tzar Peter the Great, but went through a period of having other names, Petrograd (1914–1924) and Leningrad (1924–1991).]

The American scientist related that he came across an object in a glass case that, according to the label, was an animal (an obvious Bigfoot) taken near a Russian outpost in northern California. The outpost was near Mendocino, and the mounted hominoid was collected in the late 1700s, from what he could tell on the museum label. The huge animal he saw, and said was examined, had several layers of skin, exhibited a foot 17 inches long, and was – amazingly – a 7 ft 1 in tall, hair-covered upright Bigfoot-like figure.

According to the dates of the founding of the universities in Saint Petersburg, this scientist could only be talking about the Saint Petersburg State University, which was founded in 1724. All the other universities in Saint Petersburg are technology, electrical, polytechnical and specialty institutes founded between 1828 and 1906. This could even be about the The State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg.

A Russian discovery of an 18th or 19th century Californian Bigfoot body has never been mentioned before in any Russian, hominological or cryptozoological correspondence, book, or literature.

Could it be true? Could the ultimate evidence of the existence of Bigfoot be undisturbed in the basement of a Russian museum? Strange things have been found in museums, needless to say.

What evidence is there that the Russians were ever in California?

Of course, the short history of Russians intruding into the Spanish lands of California is well-documented.

A little bit of research shows that Russians seeking pelts of the sea otter (Enhydra lutris) near the Pacific coast, first established sites in Alaska and then moved down along the coast of California, looking for areas that might serve their purposes. In the “History of the Russian Settlement at Fort Ross, California,” the Russians appear to have mostly occupied the spots around San Francisco Bay from 1804 through 1829. The Russian who first came in 1804 was Ivan Alexandrovich Kuskov, and in 1812, he established (along with 25 Russians and almost 100 Aleuts) a fortified settlement on the California coast north of Bodega Bay.

Indeed, Fort Ross was a Russian fur trade outpost in what is now Sonoma County, California, United States, from the time of its establishment by the Russian-American Company in 1812, until it was sold to John Sutter (of Gold Rush fame) in 1841. (“Ross,” by the way, is a poetical shortened version of “Rossiya,” which is Russian for Russia.)

There are other names left on the landscape that give a clue to the Russians being in California. A well-known scenic site often visited today by hikers and tourists is the Russian River in California. The name did not drop out of the sky. The river takes its name from Russian trappers who explored the river in the early 19th century, when Russia maintained trade colonies and outposts, such as Fort Ross, along the Northern California coasts.

The Russian River rises in the coastal mountain ranges of Mendocino County, north of Ukiah in Northern California. Starting at Lake Mendecino, it flows south through valleys in Mendocino County and Sonoma County along Highway 101. The river turns west at Healdsburg and empties into the Pacific Ocean at Jenner-by-the-Sea, about 60 miles (100 km) north of the San Francisco Bay’s Golden Gate.

Considering that the Coast to Coast AM caller mentioned Mendocino from the museum label, all of these details appear to fit together (unless, of course, it was a hoax caller from a Russian River bed and breakfast or something weird like that). The caller said he thought the label said the late 1700s. Could the Bigfoot have been collected by one of the first surveying Russian exploration parties, looking for locations from which to take the sea otters?

This discovery, if uncovered, is too late for inclusion in Meldrum’s just published book, but if revealed in a Russian museum, won’t it be incredible that indirectly the publication of his new tome might cause this piece of evidence to be brought forward?

Sasquatch Legend Meets Science

Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science by Jeff Meldrum.

Minnesota Iceman photograph above, Copyright Loren Coleman 1969.

Loren Coleman – has written 5491 posts on this site.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. 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.


48 Responses to “Do Russians Have a Bigfoot Carcass?”

  1. Dragonheart responds:

    Yeah, sounds interesting. I hope they make some pics soon. But I don’t want to see drawings or CGI Fakes… again ;)

  2. bfrwannab responds:

    Do you have a way to contact Dmitri Bayanov? I would think he would be the one to investigate it. Sorry I missed the broadcast now!

  3. MountDesertIslander responds:

    Loren, you are a wonder. I heard that account last night and was going to drop you an email about that very call. Not only do you have the information but all the detail work also.

    If persistence alone will solve this mystery you can’t help but be there in the end.

    The man seemed credible to me. His account was rich with detail and he spoke as you would expect of an educated individual. I do hope this isn’t another dead end or wive’s tale. Imagine, proof of Sasquatch may have been standing in a Russian/Soviet/Russian Museum for over 200 years.

  4. Shawshank responds:

    Kudos to you, Loren, on your middle-of-the-night, going-the-extra-mile research and writing. All so that your readers can remain on the cutting edge.

  5. cor2879 responds:

    So the real question is where do we go from here? Is there any way to get someone into the museum to look for said body? I suppose Mr. Bayanov may be the most obvious choice but what if they won’t let anyone into that archive?

  6. Batgirl responds:

    Wow! I love hearing stuff like this. Tales that may actually be true, and the detail. I find it hard NOT to believe this. It would be incredible to see proof.

  7. fredfacker responds:

    Fingers crossed! Wish I had the funds to go investigate myself.

  8. Ole Bub responds:

    Good morning Cryptos….

    Nice work Loren….hopefully our Russian friends can thoroughly research this lead.

    Too bad those shows are way past ole bub’s bedtime…LOL

    seeing is believing…

    ole bub and the dawgs

  9. Dan Spencer responds:

    Very interesting. This is not the first time something strange was found in a Russian museum or archive. Back in the early 90′s a western researcher located a fragment of Hitler’s skull. It’s existence had been kept hidden for decades after the war.

  10. Alton Higgins responds:

    Any chance of securing just that portion of the program as a sound file?

  11. Ray Soliday responds:

    Did the label say “mendocino”, and did the area go by that name in the 1700″s? Also, what about transporting the carcass from CA. to Russia, on a sailing boat, what about refrigeration? Transporting skins is not the same as transporting a corpse.

  12. Lee Murphy responds:

    It’s interesting the way some of these things are found out. I read a while back Area 51 was only formally acknowledged after being exposed in photographs from Soviet satellites after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

  13. Senor Chubba responds:

    This is not a loaded question- but let’s assume this is a standard taxidermied specimen- (the hide is mounted on some sort of man made frame?) – what can be learned from this with out the bones, guts, etc.? Would it be enough to be taken seriously by science? I hope so…

  14. youcantryreachingme responds:

    Senor Chubba – it would depend on the quality of the DNA obtainable from what’s left.

    If what’s left is as large as a 7 foot hominid, there’s plenty of material to start with.

    But let’s keep our heads screwed on.

    We have one genuine-sounding testimony. Needless to say, this case won’t die down unless a body (or sufficient, credible documentation) is produced. Of course, if the university were to deny such a body ever existed… well, I guess we’ve just witnessed the start of another conspiracy theory which will run from here to evermore.

    Let’s see how it unfolds.

  15. MrInspector responds:

    There are only two museums, to my knowledge, on the Saint-Petersburg State University campus. One is an archive dedicated to a russian chemist, Dmitry Mendeleev(1834-1907) and the Mineralogical Museum which I think started sometime in the 1800′s. Neither of which seem to be likely places to find a biological specimen from the 1700′s. Did anyone catch the name of the Museum? Which building it was housed in?

  16. skunkape_hunter responds:

    I must have missed that caller! I was listening off and on last night.

    I do not think it is too far fetched. There was a show on not too long ago about the Egyptian book of the dead. It seems that a full, mostly pristine, copy was found in the basement of the British museum, after being there for many many years. I am sure that this is the case with a good many things that would be able to answer questions in many areas !

    Does anyone know if DNA would be able to be collected ? I mean I assume that when the animal was ‘mounted’ it was probably pickled ? Correct ? Does anyone know what type of taxidermy techniques were being used 200+ years ago ?

    Of course DNA talk is jumping the gun a bit, since we would have to rely on the Russian government to release the info !!

  17. Roger Knights responds:

    What annoys me is the way Noory et al. didn’t ask for the caller to stay on the line so the producer could get his contact information and name.

  18. LSU_Crypto responds:

    I actually heard this. I keep coast to coast on during the night. I happened to wake up during this call. The 9 layers of skin caught my ear. Do any ape species have 9 layers?

    I don’t put too much stock in any of the crack pots who are guests on that show, except for Loren and Morgus the Magnificent. The callers are all loons also. I once heard a guy say he built a time machine and travelled into the future and got depressed because he was an alcoholic. Kooks.

  19. lastensugle responds:

    imagine what else is out there in the basements of the museums of the world!

  20. serf77 responds:

    I’ve got just one question: If an educated person came across such a discovery; why would he wait so long to come forward with it? It doesn’t make sense to me. Any comments?

  21. bill green responds:

    This is a very interesting article of a possible Russian Bigfoot carcass.

  22. eireman responds:

    Yeah, sounds pretty specious to me. If the caller had evidence to support his claims, then there would be something worth perking up about. Until then we’re left with an unsubstantiated tale by a late night caller to C2C. I don’t know if I’d start booking a flight to Russia just yet.

  23. greywolf responds:

    The story leaves a lot out that we don’t know and perhaps not told. BUT as we all knowour Russian friends are not always forth coming with any info regardless of its nature…God sinse the 1700′s they could have almost anything stored away and who knows what was destroied in the war’s….

  24. jamesrav responds:

    serf77 has a very good point: keep this info private for 14 years? I’ve been an off and on listener to Art Bell for years, and on some nights he’d have ‘story-telling’, normally about ghosts. And some of these tales were very well delivered, full of detail and quite believable. Yet, the whole premise was that the tales *had* to be fiction. So some of the Art Bell listeners are extremely good story-tellers. Furthermore, the guy has open access to this museum (apparently alone?) and doesn’t return to take some pictures?

  25. jayman responds:

    At least this is something that can in principle be followed up on, but I won’t get my hopes up. I’d say an important clue is the three-level basement. That should be a help in pinning down a location. A quick email or call to Dr. Bayanov or other Russian hominologist could determine if there is anything to go on.

    I don’t know what he could have meant by the “several layers of skin” remark, or how he made this determination.

  26. MrInspector responds:

    Well, I went straight to the horses stable, if not mouth.

    I have contacted the office staff at Saint-Petersburg State University, and asked for:

    1) Confirmation or denial about said specimen.
    2) Confirmation or denial that such a museum has ever existed on campus.
    3) Confirmation or denial that such a study was carried out by an American environmental scientist.

    If I hear back from them I’ll let you know, but I won’t hold my breath.

  27. scotto responds:

    Very interesting Loren.

    Please keep us posted. I hope this man took some pics and will come forward to others.

  28. scotto responds:

    BTW, thanks for taking the initiative, Mr. Inspector.

    Hope you get replies.

  29. clman1 responds:

    Who knows what specimens are collecting dust in the basements of that bureaucratic, still very paranoid country. It makes me think of the last scene in “Raiders of the Lost Arc” with those endless crates in that immense warehouse.

  30. Mnynames responds:

    Skeptical about the story, although it is certainly plausible. About half of the “New” discoveries in paleontology nowadays come from people rooting around in museum basements, if only because scientists are now digging up fossils faster than they can properly study them, and some misidentification is inevitable. The “bone wars” between Cope and Marsh also caused less significant finds to go ignored in the quest for more impressive specimens.

  31. kidquid responds:

    If anyone is interested, I wanted to mention that I have just finished Dr. Meldrum’s new book and thought it was excellent. Highly recommended.

  32. sharmcos responds:

    Alright, I’ll start digging the basement of museums near me.

    Can I listen to C2C online? Any streaming? I live many thousands of miles away.

  33. caddo21 responds:

    Yes, this is a great story. The incident seems perfectly plausible. Russian trappers in Spanish California. Read “Two Years Before the Mast” by Richard H. Dana and you’ll get a sense of how extensively the Russians were involved with trade in California.

    I’m deeply impressed with the fact that fur hunters were involved. They have the skill to skin and preserve the hide as a gift for their Czar. I’m sure they were richly rewarded.

    But…One thing makes this whole thing implausible; Why would a desperately poor museum, right after the collapse of the Soviet Union, sit on a Gold mine such as this? It doesn’t make sense.

  34. VoiceOfReason responds:

    You expect me to believe that a guy saw a bigfoot carcass, kept it a secret for years, and didn’t tell his story until he hears a radio show about it. HOAX!

  35. Loren Coleman responds:

    People may be forgetting that for most of the world, the general public doesn’t care about cryptozoology, Bigfoot, and the like. Folks do their jobs, avoid ridicule, finish their work, and go home.

    There is absolutely no reason for most people to understand the impact that finding a large hairy unidentified thing in a museum basement would have. It might be a curiosity at the time, but it could be years later, reading something or watching a television program….or yes, listening to a radio show overnight…where one feels moved to talk about what they saw but generally ignored years earlier.

  36. monkeyz responds:

    sharmcos, if you go to their website you can sign up and listen live streams nightly, or download the show the next day. there is also a 90 backlog to download if you wish. it’s like $30 for 6 months, so it’s not too bad.

  37. MMTHPOOLGHOSTCAMPR responds:

    A fellow called in on the Coast to Coast show a months ago claiming to have shot/killed and buried a “juvenile”Bigfoot over 20 yrs ago, maybe more I can’t remember how many the fellow had said but I do know it was over 20. This man was supposed to give George Noory a map via e-mail to where he had buried the creature. This fellow was worried that if the creature was unearthed and it appeared to be half-human that he would be charged with murder. As far as I know, nothing has been dug up and I haven’t heard any more about this, has anyone else heard of this story ?

  38. caddo21 responds:

    I agree 100% with Mr. Coleman, the public in general would be about as interested in cryptozoology as most of us would be about flower arrangement. (Sorry if I offend those who do:)).

    But imagine what the effect was when people saw a live gorilla at the zoo shortly after it’s discovery by scientists.

  39. CamperGuy responds:

    My initial reaction is that this is a well crafted story.

    I can easily believe a Bigfoot actually being found in museum under the circumstances described.

    The part that makes me doubt is that a “scientist” would find something like this and not be shouting to anyone who would listen as to what he had discovered.

    I would also think a scientist would immediately start documenting what he could about the find.

    Personally, I hope the story is true and would really be happy if a specimen would be found this way instead of being killed by a hunter or some such.

  40. kittenz responds:

    “I’ve got just one question: If an educated person came across such a discovery; why would he wait so long to come forward with it? It doesn’t make sense to me. Any comments?”

    That exactly echoes my first thought when I read this.

    I would love to think that there IS a bona fide mounted specimen of an unknown animal, which can be subjected to scientific study, in an accredited museum (especially if it is really a Sasquatch). But I don’t think it is likely. Lots of people know how to make up stories and make them sound credible by filling the stories with genuine-sounding details. And why would this guy wait 14 years & then announce his discovery as a call-in on a radio show? As to the person not realizing what he had seen at the time, this person was supposedly an environmental scientist. Even the average person off the street, who may know nothing about science, usually knows about Bigfoot. Scientists do not exist in a vaccuum. Surely if a scientist saw a large unknown hairy creature, supposedly from northern California, he would have mentioned it to SOMEBODY in the intervening years, and the story would have come out before now. This is just too conveniently remote in time and distance.

    It would be nice to think this is legit, but I seriously doubt that it is.

  41. Ole Bub responds:

    Nice commentary on the possible Russian carcass. Loren is right regarding the average person’s knowledge or curiosity of anything challenging their mundane existence, particularly in a stifling totalitarian system. One of the reasons I salute Bayanov and his Russian colleagues. JMHO

    As usual there are so many unanswered questions. Let the quest begin anew. JMHO

    If I’ve loaned any of you fine folks any of my books, please return them, my memory is not what it used to be, my memory is not what it used to be.

    seeing is believing

    ole bub and the dawgs

  42. Doug Tarrant responds:

    Hmmm… the Saga continues, no doubt.

  43. WVBIG_2006 responds:

    I’m suspicious since this is a claim that can probably never be verified or even investigated further.

  44. mystery_man responds:

    I agree, the average person might have stored this away in some basement, mislabelled it, etc. But this man is a scientist, and I would think a scientist would have had some inkling of what an important find it was regardless of whether he is interested in cryptozoology, and do more than tell his story on the radio. Also, this carcass was in a museum where I would think they might be more careful than the average person with such a find. Surely museum personnel would realize how important this is? Just a thought. It will be very interesting to see where this all leads.

  45. twblack responds:

    Seems something like this would not have just fallen thru the cracks and ended up in a basement. I do hope this could be the real thing but a little skepitacle w/o more proof.

  46. mystery_man responds:

    My thoughts exactly. A seven foot tall hairy humanoid is going to catch someone’s attention. I feel a little skeptical that it would end up packed away in a museum’s basement like this and “fallen through the cracks” as twblack so aptly put it. Hopeful, but skeptical on this one.

  47. Kazym Lepessov responds:

    I emailed Messr. Trakhtengerts and Bourtsev – waiting for the response. There is another Russian – Valentin Sapunov – he is a resident of St.Petersbourg (aka Leningrad) – he is supposed to have more information (no contact though).

  48. doubter responds:

    I think that “Bigfoot on ice” is a russian drink…you know, a jigger of wodka, a little “hair of the dog”, shaken not stirred!



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