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Night Walker

Jersey Devil

33 posts in this topic

By Brian Regal

Everyone knows the story of the Jersey Devil. In 1735, a witch named Mother Leeds gave birth to a hideous “child” with a horse-like head, cloven hooves, a long tail and bat-like wings. It yelped menacingly at the ragged, dull-witted family, then flew up and out the chimney to spend eternity harassing anyone who encountered it along the lonely back roads of the Pine Barrens.

Unfortunately, everything you think you know about the Jersey Devil is wrong. It is not a monster of the woods, but of politics. It is not a devilish horse haunting our present, but a scapegoat lost to our memory.

Further reading...

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very interesting read.. first time ive heard of this. thanks for the post

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Excellent piece and this is exactly where pretty much all of this stuff falls apart - the origins. It doesn't take much digging to find that what we believe about many of these creatures is simply a post hoc creation by somebody out to make a buck. Mothman is another great example.

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Every time I hear this story I think how did she give birth to something that has the head of a goat, That must have torn her up

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Great rendition of the creature in the painting. The article is interesting in the naff tactics of Benjemin Franklin claiming that a living person was really a ghost. But it worked. Well. This isn't any proof that hundreds of eyewitnesses in the present era are mistaken when they describe their encounters with something unexplainable.

Eventually, Daniel’s son, Titan Leeds, took over running the almanac and ran squarely into Benjamin Franklin.

The upstart Franklin was angling to make a name for himself as a publisher. As a publicity stunt, Franklin — in the guise of “Poor Richard” Saunders — claimed that astrological calculations showed Titan Leeds would die in 1733. When the prediction didn’t pan out, Leeds called Franklin a fool and a liar. Never missing a beat, Franklin claimed that, since Titan Leeds had died, his ghost must be doing all the shouting. Leeds tried to defend himself, but Franklin kept a straight face and argued that Leeds had been resurrected from the dead. The plan worked. Poor Richard’s Almanac became famous while the pioneering Leeds Almanac dwindled. Titan Leeds actually died in 1738.

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Interesting story. I love learning about stuff. I went camping in the Pine Barrens in November, and it was so cold the tent pole snapped when I was trying to take it apart. Pretty cold inside the tent, too...

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Great rendition of the creature in the painting. The article is interesting in the naff tactics of Benjemin Franklin claiming that a living person was really a ghost. But it worked. Well. This isn't any proof that hundreds of eyewitnesses in the present era are mistaken when they describe their encounters with something unexplainable.

And these hundreds of eyewitness sightings are documented where?

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Posted (edited)

Mmm, yeah.....an anonymous self reporting website where anyone with an internet connection can report a sighting. That's serious evidence right there. I might just sit down and fill one out myself.

And, again, how can any sightings of such a creature be taken seriously when the entire mythology falls apart at its very origins? Just like the Mothman, there's no "there" there.

Edited by Rafterman

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Excellent piece and this is exactly where pretty much all of this stuff falls apart - the origins. It doesn't take much digging to find that what we believe about many of these creatures is simply a post hoc creation by somebody out to make a buck. Mothman is another great example.

I wanted to say something but this summed up what I was going to post rather nicely.

How can we be sure that these sightings are true?

Besides, how can the Jersey Devil still be alive? Unless it's immortal. Then how is it immortal? It could be a demon. Then why fly around in the woods all day? Can demons be birthed from a human? Why is it evil? Why does it stay in the same place?

There's a lot of things about the Jersey Devil that don't make sense.

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Why is it evil?

It's from New Jersey.

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Here's another great site for some stories. WeirdNJ

This one was in the comments section:

This is a true story, and the N.J State Police were even involved with this matter. It was the summer of 2009, my ex and I went out to the pine barons in the middle of the night to fire a newly purchased gun. We got there about 2am - and right around 3am we started to hear loud screeching noises, more or less like a hawk but a lot louder, we decided to leave and head home something just didn't feel right.. I had that strange feeling in the pit of my stomach.... As we started to head back to my car we then hear a loud flapping noise, the tree tops were swaying back & forth, but there was no wind? Now I am really scared! We got back to the car to head home and I realized that my cell phone was not where I left it (on the middle hand rest). We looked and looked and looked? I knew I left my phone there as I always do.. I thought it might of fell off of my lap onto the ground, so we proceeded to look around the outside of the car.. Nothing there.. I was standing on the driver side of the car with the door open, and he was on the passenger side doing the same.. All of a sudden, my cell phone came flying past my face like a bullet from behind! smashed into the roof of my car and slid across to my ex on the passenger side, we both looked at each other and started to scream and jumped into the car... At the time I had a Chrysler 300m and as we all know I really had no business driving that car through the woods, but I put the car into drive and I flew down the path at 50-70 mph! my car was bouncing all around and I didn't care, all I know is I wanted to get away from whatever was out there as fast as I could. I am going to admit I have never been more scared in my life, I litterley peed my pants. We were both crying, screaming and confused.. I had to stop the car because I actually couldn't breath, I was in full panic mode... We decided to pull over and switch seats so he can drive.. As we stopped the car and switched seats we hear the loud flapping and screeching again, but this time it was right about us..We heard birds chirping loudly as if they were warning the other birds of something.. We finally got onto 206 and we couldn't driver any faster... We were driving so fast that the State Police pulled us over, we were in such a panic that the police thought my ex was trying to kidnapped me or something, we explained to them what had happened, and what we heard and saw.. We showed the officer my cell phone that was smashed to pieces, the officer said that it looks like if that phone had hit me in the head I probably would of been knocked unconscious. The officer shared almost the same story with us, as far as the screeching and flapping noise and the uneasy feeling. I grew up in Clementon all I knew the Pine barons like the back of my hand, I have been there numerous times and never experienced anything like I did that night! I will NEVER EVER return to the Pine Barrons again..

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Here's another great site for some stories. WeirdNJ

This one was in the comments section:

Again, anonymous stories posted by God knows whom. But for anywhere from $8 to $20 you can buy the Weird NJ magazines and books and read all about it.

Come on.

And again, how can any claims be taken seriously when the basic story falls apart at its origin 200+ years ago?

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Basic story. My word. Obviously the basic story is a just that, a story. What eyewitness testimony is exactly what it says it is. Someone's terrifying first hand experience of something they can't explain. There's plenty of them, which all share some amazing characteristics. Grown adults with families don't make this stuff up 'for a laugh'.

Edited by NatureBoff

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Grown adults with families don't make this stuff up 'for a laugh'.

you'd be surprised what folks do for 15 minutes of attention....

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It doesn't take much digging to find that what we believe about many of these creatures is simply a post hoc creation by somebody out to make a buck. 8a4.jpg

What evidence do you have for this off hand comment?

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you'd be surprised what folks do for 15 minutes of attention....

This sounds like your excuse and a mental block which shields you from the apparent bizarreness of the actual existence of these creatures.

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This sounds like your excuse and a mental block which shields you from the apparent bizarreness of the actual existence of these creatures.

and yet it's my own experience and one of the reasons i got rid of my TV set.....

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and yet it's my own experience and one of the reasons i got rid of my TV set.....

It's if all the regular posters have a story to tell. What's yours if you don't mind me saking? Edited by NatureBoff

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about

It's if all the regular posters have a story to tell. What's yours if you don't mind me saking?

you mean about that 15 minutes of attention thing? well, one of my mums' friends is a self-proclaimed shaman slash singer,

of course occasionally in contact with angels and spirits of all sorts, and she even brought that **** to the german version of "x-factor"....

and she has 6 or 7 kids who either don't care or just decided to live with that.

That's about enough for me to underline my point here.

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There's many credible witnesses who've experienced encounters with the 'Jersey Devil'. Your anecdotal evidence doesn't hold up.

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is there a bottom line under which also you dismiss a story as folklore or tell-tale? or is everything someone claims irrefutable proof?

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and don't get me wrong, i am not dismissing anything people allegedly experience right away, but the term "credible witness" doesn't go with "Jersey devil"....

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is there a bottom line under which also you dismiss a story as folklore or tell-tale? or is everything someone claims irrefutable proof?

Yeah. Teenagers/young adults videoing whilst riding a quad-bike who just happened to surprise a big hairy humanoid standing beside a bush.

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Yeah. Teenagers/young adults videoing whilst riding a quad-bike who just happened to surprise a big hairy humanoid standing beside a bush.

there were are, case closed, say no more

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