Is the Boggy Creek Monster simply a legend, or a modern-day Bigfoot?
For centuries, a remote town in southern Arkansas has harbored a huge secret. This secret became well-known to many when the cult classic film The Legend of Boggy Creek (1972) made its way to theaters. The small town of Fouke, Arkansas, located 30 minutes outside of Texarkana, Arkansas, has supposedly been haunted by this mysterious monster since the early 1800’s.
With hundreds of sightings being reported since its first appearance, many people have worked to compile an ideal picture of what the monster looks like.
Many witnesses have reported the monster’s human and primate-like bipedal nature, standing at anywhere from seven to ten-feet-tall. It is described to have brown or black fur covering it completely, with red eyes, and long arms that tend to swing at its sides. A common thing that many people have discussed is a horrid stench that seems to follow the bigfoot-like monster, resembling an even worse wet dog smell.
The Boggy Creek Monster first made headlines in May of 1971, when locals Bobby and Elizabeth Ford’s home was allegedly attacked by it. What was thought to have been a large bear reached its arm through a window in the house, and it was eventually chased off. Before it left though, Bobby and Elizabeth’s brother, Don, fired multiple rounds at it. The creature seemed to be un-phased by this, though, and only footprints and damage from the beast were left behind. It has been reported that bullets barely penetrate the animal, leaving no blood to track it. Then, on May 23 of the same year, D.C. Woods Jr., Wilma Woods, and R. H. Sedgass watched a primate-like animal walk in front of them across U.S. Highway 71. There have been multiple sightings since the first two, with national attention coming from the film The Legend of Boggy Creek.
While primates typically have five fingers (or toes), alleged footprints from this creature reveal three toes and an enormous footprint… something very out of the ordinary for southern Arkansas. Nobody expected to see a monster such as this in the middle of a small country town, and many people still write this off as fake to this day. They claim that the old sightings were those of black bears that gotten brave around humans and their livestock. Most sightings and stories come from parents and grandparents of other Fouke natives, some who still wholeheartedly believe that what they encountered was a monstrous, cryptid creature.
Since the late 1990’s, sightings have dwindled to almost none, with many people believing the monster to be nothing more than a local legend. The Boggy Creek Monster has sparked national curiosity, though, attracting tourists to visit the local Monster Mart convenience store, topped by a statue tribute to the creature that put Fouke, Arkansas on the map. The convenience store has since turned toward becoming the Fouke Monster Museum. After The Legend of Boggy Creek came sequels and other films such as Return to Boggy Creek (1977), Boggy Creek II: And The Legend Continues (1985), Boggy Creek: The Legend Is True (2010), and The Legacy of Boggy Creek (2011). The monster even earned its own episode on the hit show Finding Bigfoot, being the first episode on Season Five.
Although only locals few and far in-between have reported encounters with it, the Fouke Monster still holds a strong grip on the town of Fouke. It has driven tourism up exponentially, but also makes people weary to travel into the woods of Boggy Creek alone, if at all. The question of whether the beast still lurks around in the woods, or was never there at all, might never be known.
Take a peek at the trailer for “The Legend of Boggy Creek!”
Sadie is an Intern Article Writer and Senior English Major at the University of Central Arkansas. In her spare time, she enjoys watching horror movies, reading, and spending time with her guinea pigs, Ginger and Spike.