Posted by: Loren Coleman on December 9th, 2005
What Is It? “Braxton Beast” Photo Mystery
A startling new camera trap photograph of what appears to be an unknown bipedal creature has been shared with Cryptomundo by a reader. Taken literally days ago, the West Virginia photograph of the “Braxton Beast” was “captured” in a county with a well-known history of bizarreness.
The Cryptomundo correspondent, a 27-year-old gentleman, Frederick B. Gerwig, sends along this information in his initial email to me earlier this week: “Here is a picture that my father’s wildlife camera (motion activated) took around 12/07/05. We are not sure what it is, but it doesn’t look human. It very well could be a hunter or something, however, my father’s property is posted and this is a wildlife feeding site approximately 400 yards from their Braxton County, WV home. The proportions seem very strange as compared to those of a human. It is possible that it is low light distortion, but it seems very curious. Sorry the picture is so small. The camera he uses is somewhat low tech to prevent theft as it stays stationed at this location all the time until he picks it up to download and review the pictures on his PC. Let me know what you think…we are baffled by this image.”
In a follow-up email, in answer to several questions I had, Mr. Gerwig writes: “I think I mentioned earlier that this camera is unmanned as to not disturb the animals that come in to feed. There are many rock overhangs and crevices in this area that this thing might be using for shelter. In fact, approximately 100 ft in the direction in which the entity is walking there is a large rock overhang we used to get under to get out of the rain when I played in these woods as a child. It looks straight over my parents house. Behind the entity is an incline to the ridge line of the mountain and a large rock wall with a drop of several hundred feet. P. S. – In case I failed to mention in the initial email, my father’s property is posted for no trespassing, very few individuals are permitted to be in those woods.”
Braxton County, West Virginia, is the site of the “Braxton County Monster” reports of September 12, 1952, otherwise known as the “Flatwoods Monster” or “Green Monster” encounter.
Less well-known is an encounter in this general area that took place in 1960. At 11:00 P.M., Friday, December 30, 1960, bakery deliveryman Charles Stover rounded a curve on a lonely, backwoods road near Hickory Flats, West Virginia – between Braxton and Webster Counties – and saw a “monster, standing erect, with hair all over its body.” Stover said that he almost hit the thing and stopped his bakery truck a short distance away to look back. The hairy, six-foot-tall, man-shaped figure stood beside the road watching him. He stepped on the gas and finally stopped at a restaurant-filling station where he told his story to a group of men. They immediately armed themselves and went to the spot. They found strange marks on the ground and a large rocks had been overturned by something. But the creature was never found.
What do you think is shown in this new photograph of what I am dubbing the “Braxton Beast”?
Shown is the original photograph and a closeup of the image of the “Braxton Beast” captured on film.
Copyright 2005 Frederick B. Gerwig. Permission to publish granted to Cryptomundo.com
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.