Giving the Devil His Due…

– – Stories of the Jersey Devil have been in oral circulation since 1735, making it possibly the oldest reported “monster” in America.  Two schools of thought exist about the creature, one holding that it is truly supernatural…the “son of the devil,” as suggested by the original Mother Leeds account.  A second explanation for the creature holds that it is some sort of mutated animal that has not yet been identified by science.  Supporting this latter contention is the fact that the Pine Barrens location reported as the Devil’s stomping grounds has been known to have produced genetic malformations in reptiles and mammals, including humans, possibly due to heavy metal or other mineral deposits. Some abnormalities afflicting animals in this location have included odd colorations, extra appendages, and even extra heads.

Native Americans in petroglyphs, some dating back thousands of years, depicted an entity that has reptilian features.  In spite of this and the extensive oral history, the Jersey Devil has been treated satirically, making many reluctant to step forward with their beliefs due to fear of ridicule.  More serious study and treatment of the Jersey Devil may be fostered by a recently opened exhibit at the Paranormal Museum in Asbury Park, N.J. that features a variety of artifacts, including reproductions of a supposed Jersey Devil skull, drawings, and other artifacts.

Despite the lack of hard evidence, the Pinelands area of New Jersey covers more than a million acres…a perfect environment for an unknown animal to hide in!

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3 Comments on “Giving the Devil His Due…”

  1. carycomic Says:

    I can understand why some people might ridicule “alleged” eyewitnesses to the Jersey Devil. The first time I heard of it was in reference to the pro-hockey team!

    As for genetic malformations? The more recent ones could be due to the wetland pollution southern NJ has become so notorious for. But, how does that explain the bizarre descriptions given in much _older_ sighting accounts?

    That last question was purely rhetorical.

  2. carycomic Says:

    And, please note: I used sarcastic quotes to denote the fact that _I DON’T DOUBT_ the more-modern eyewitnesses saw something they can’t conventionally explain.

    • vulpesffb Says:

      I like to think that the Jersey Devil is more than an abnormal deer, as some have suggested…


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