Tales that tell of Bigfoot, or Sasquatch, as it’s known in the far Northwest, go back to Lewis and Clark and the Pacific Northwest Expeditions. They even go well beyond that in the traditions of many native Americans.
The Miwuk of the coastal mountain areas of California called Bigfoot Loo-poo-oi’yes. The tribes farther north, near Clear Lake, called it Olayome. As with their Sierra brethren, both Loo-poo-oi’yes and Olayome were rock giants who lived in caves and came out at night to make a crying noise, hoo-oo-oo, like a baby, to lure the Miwuk women away from their fires.
In “The Wilderness Hunter”, published in 1892, President Theodore Roosevelt recounted a Bigfoot-like monster story that was told to him by a grizzled old Idaho trapper.
Hundreds of accounts emerged from the early 1800′s through the mid-1900′s. They are found in old letters, books and newspapers. They record visual encounters with a hair-covered, half-man, half-ape, the discovery of strangely large, but human like, footprints on a trail, and sometimes other telling but inexplicable evidence, including an oddly human like vocalization described as a gibberish, or a jabber, a baby’s cry, and, occasionally, an inhuman, horrifying yell in the dead of night.
From native Americans to the country’s early European settlers, these are the same types of myths, legends and published accounts that preceded the discovery of the gorilla in 1902.
Today, Bigfoot continues to make news, confounding those of us who think we know better, that no such creature could exist.