Sunday 28 June 2009

Bigfoot in Illinois

There have been numerous sightings of Bigfoot type creatures in Illinois, so after looking at the mud monster in an earlier post I thought I would out some together

The earliest sighting that I came across was in 1912. A woman named Beaulah Schroat reported that she and her brothers had often seen a huge, hairy creature near their home in Effingham. Then a "huge gorilla" was reported as seen in the woods near Elizabeth in July 1929.

In 1941, the Reverend Harpole was hunting squirrels near Mount Vernon and encountered a large creature that "looked something like a baboon". He struck it with his rifle and fired a warning shot that sent it scurrying back into the underbrush.

In 1962 a grey coloured creature was spotted by Steven Collins and Robert Earle . The creature vanished into the woods and the witnesses told the local newspaper that it was "like no other animal we had ever seen before."

In September 1965, four teenagers were parked in a car near an undeveloped area outside of Decatur called Montezuma Hills. It was a secluded area used by locals as a "lover’s lane". The young couples were sitting in the car when a black, man-like shape approached the vehicle. The creature seemed massive and frightened the teenagers badly. They drove off in a panic but after dropping off their girlfriends the two males returned to the area for another look. They once again saw the monster and it walked up to their car as though it were curious. They were too scared to get out, but even with the windows rolled up, they could smell the monster’s horrible smell. Then they summoned the police, who searched but did not find anything.

In 1968 there was another sighting near Chittyville . Two teenagers Tim Bullock and Barbara Smith, were driving north of town on August 11 when they spotted a 10-foot tall monster that was covered with black hair and had a round face. It threw dirt at their car and they left to summon the police. When the authorities returned, they found a large depression in the grass that was apparently a nest.

Same year in July , a couple driving near Weldon Springs State Park, outside of Clinton, saw what looked like a huge "bear" in the river. Later, a policeman and a conservation officer found tracks along the water‘s edge that definitely did not belong to a bear. They were reportedly very large and human-like.

In 1972, there were reports coming in from the Pekin and Peoria areas. In May, Randy Emmert, and some friends, reported a large, hairy creature near Cole Hollow Road. This monster was 8-10 feet tall and whitish in color. The witnesses stated that it made a loud, screeching sound and they suspected that it was living in a hole beneath an abandoned house. It also left very unusual tracks, having only three toes on each foot. Others also reported seeing a monster and it became known as "Cohomo", short for the "Cole Hollow Road Monster". This lead to local police logged more than 200 calls about the monster, including one where the creature destroyed a fence. The police departments were naturally sceptical, but the calls kept coming in. Cohomo was seen again on July 27 as East Peoria Police reported that he was spotted by "two reliable citizens" swimming in the Illinois River. They got close enough to him to know that he smelled awful and looked like a "cross between an ape and a caveman". That appears to be the last sighting of Cohomo..

In 1973, three men who were walking along the Sangamon River near Decatur saw a large, hairy man that walked like an ape. The creature disappeared into the underbrush.

In 1990, a woman living in a mobile home near Eldon reported to Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department she heard noises, noticed a bad smell, and saw a creature about 10 feet tall and about 400 pounds. A deputy investigated and found impressions big enough to place both his feet in. Just two days later, an 8-year-old girl and her mother described a creature 8 feet tall with dark brown, frizzy hair and standing on two feet rummaging through a trash pile near their house.

In 1996, a man living in the Vian Bottoms, about two to three miles north of the Arkansas River, saw a black figure moving in and out of the trees. He said it looked to be about 8 feet tall, huge, muscular build, with very long stringy hair, and walked upright on two legs.

In July 2000 in Essex, Illinois ,Andrew Souligne was driving into a local cemetery one night when a large, hairy shape walked out in front of the car. The creature froze in the headlights and turned towards the car, apparently stunned by the bright lights from the vehicle. Souligne (and the other passenger of the car) were pretty shocked themselves and the driver immediately put the car into reverse and back away from the monster. Moments later, the ape loped into the woods and vanished.

In 2001 a woman driving near Green Leaf Lake , saw something cross the road in front of her. She said it was about 6-1/2 feet tall, with long, dark hair except for the face area, and had a thick build. She described the creature further as looking “like a person with hair.”

In October of 2005, Tahlequah 911 received a call at about 6 a.m. one morning from a man near the Welling bridge who said he had just seen what he believed to be Bigfoot. It was 7 feet tall and hairy, and from the anatomy it appeared to be female.

In July 2008, a woman living in an area known as Murphy’s Hill, near 14-Mile Creek, said she was receiving a curious and regular visitor that was “getting bolder” and “coming out in the daytime.” She said one “Sunday afternoon the wind shifted, and we smelled it.” She said she went into the yard and found the door to her dogs’ pen broken almost in half. And, that the dogs get really quiet when this thing is around.

So Illinois, a haven for types of Bigfoot? There does seem to be an element of hysteria in some of the accounts, especially the 200 calls the police received in one day. But with that many sightings, even if only a third are reasonably sound, it is still a lot of sightings, whether mistaken identity or not, or something strange in Illinois.

See story of “Soppy” the bigfoot here :

Farmer City Bigfoot article


Anonymous said...

i had heard reports of the Saunemin Giant many times over the years. It's a large shadowy figure seen near where 5 Mile Creek enters the Vermillion River. It has also been seen near 5 Mile Cemetery by Saunemin,IL. The height is between 6'8" and 7' tall. Some even say they think it could be a ghost. There have been many sightings, some as early as the 1930s. The local newspaper had pictures of one many years ago.
In recent years, ATV riders reported that they were chased away from a wooded area along 5 Mile creek by a dark giant who threw large stones at them. Some of them were injured after being hit in the head and back. Their ATVs were also damaged. I'd like to see more information on the Saunemin Giant.

Anonymous said...

I have relatives that live near Saunemin and they say they saw the "Saunemin Giant" as recently as around Thanksgiving 2011. They were deer hunting along the 5 Mile Creek and say a giant shaggy "man" in the woods near the creek. It startled them and ran towards them. They were not sure if it was human or a ghost or bear or some bigfoot type creature. They were frightened an fired their shotguns in the air. The giant paused and stared at them for about 30 seconds, then slowly walked into the woods. They were scared and left immediately.

Anonymous said...

The Saunemin Giant supposedly was a giant gorilla like creature sighted in the 1930s along a creek near Saunemin,IL. A guy named Chambers reportedly captured an injured one and locked it in his barn. He contacted the sheriff but the creature had busted out a wall with brute force before the sheriff got there.

Anonymous said...

I have heard many stories of the Saunemin Giant. Some say it's a giant ghost while others believe it's a bigfoot. It always is reported as being very tall, about 7'? and very dark brown or black and shadowy. The reports usually seemed to center around 5 Mile Creek near where it enters the Vermillion River. I have also heard that it has been seen in 5 Mile Cemetery nearby. Is it a bigfoot, a ghost, or just some giant of a guy that hangs out by the creek and runs off trespassers? The Saunemin Giant remains a mystery. It kinda scares me too.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to hear more about the Saunemin Giant. It seems more documented over a longer period of time than most bigfoot entities.

Anonymous said...

After reading about the bigfoot sighting near Farmer City, as well as one in Grundy County,Il. it makes me wonder if these are connected to the "Saunemin Giant" sightings. Saunemin is in Livingston County,Il. but near enough to the other sightings that it might indicate a migratory pattern for bigfoot in Illinois. The Saunemin Giant has also been described as a ghost, but that may be because the witnesses did not believe a human could be so tall.
The Saunemin Giant seems to have been consistently sited numerous times over many years. Perhaps they tend to stay near Saunemin and only occassionally migrate to Seneca, Farmer City, Fairbury, etc.

Anonymous said...

106Why is everybody talking about Saunemin Giant? The Article is about CoHoMo. Anyways i just thought id mention that i live on Cole Hollow rd and the legend is no joke. if anyone wants to hear more about my exeriences contact me at

Anonymous said...

My brother and I live not terribly far from 5 Mile Creek. We have seen and heard some very unusual things out here in the country over the years, from UFO reminiscent lights in the sky to paranormal elements. Obviously it isn't like in the movies, you'll have a year or two where some mildly strange things happen and it goes quiet again for the better part of a decade. All I'm saying here is that in my experience, unusual things are known to occur in this area.

I've been familiar with the story of the Saunemin Giant for many years. My brother and I have been out to that creek several times and camped down on the sandbar. Late at night we have heard some unsettling noises that make my hairs stand on end. One night we walked out to the sandbar to retrieve a fishing pole he'd left there by accident the night before and we encountered a large set of beaming eyes ahead on the sandbar. I've heard of an occasional cougar in the area and my first thought is always of a cougar when we hear or see anything big and creepy out there. So if you are like us and get a kick out of hanging out down that way in the nighttime, bring a gun.

We are deliberately camping out where the Vermillion runs into the creek as it is said the Saunemin Giant has been witnessed there. I'm uneasy of the idea but if we happen to encounter anything notable I will return here and detail it. I don't plan on the Giant, but the notion of running afoul whatever is responsible for the freakish sounds we've heard is scarier to me because that's probably a cougar. Seen some big creepy eyes out on the sandbar, never know what it could have been.

QuestioningTheWeird said...

This is years later, but I am located in Dwight. Looking to do a story on the Saunemin Giant and/or the DuPont monster if anyone has a story. Please send me an email!