Sunday 23 January 2022

Fort Sheridan Sea Monster



Fort Sheridan Sea Serpent

Fort Sheridan is a residential neighborhood in  Lake County, Illinois, United States. It was originally an Army post named after Civil War cavalry general Philip Sheridan for  his services to Chicago.

In March 25, 1893 The Chicago Daily Tribune newspaper has a story that  that officers and enlisted men at Fort Sheridan are sure “that a fearful and unknown sea monster is lying in wait for unfortunates off the shore” of the base.  In fact, men are so sure that the creature exists that “Several brave and convinced soldiers have totally reformed and 200 others have signed the pledge to let liquor alone.”  [Chicago Daily Tribune, March 25, 1893] 

Captain H. R. Brinkerhoff, the commander of Company A of the Fifteenth Infantry, was sitting at his second-floor window of his home “reading and now and then scanning the water.”  He spied a “black speck on the waves directly off his house … it grew rapidly in size.  It disappeared beneath a wave and reappeared again, a huge object that gave signs of life.” He summoned a fellow officer Lieutenant W. F. Blauvelt of Company G of the Fifteenth Infantry, and the two headed to the lake and began a search with their binoculars.  Brinkerhoff told the Tribune reporter they saw, a “head was very large, dark above and light coloured underneath … The serpent, or whatever it was, I estimated to be thirty feet long.  I could not describe it, except that it looked like a huge alligator deprived of its legs.”  The two officers reported it to their friends and word spread to the enlisted men .  The chaplain on the base didn’t have “the slightest difficulty in securing the signatures of 200 men to a pledge to abstain from drink.”

The officers were unlikely to be perpetuating  a hoax as the punishment would be severe.There was not any  more information on sightings. So was it a sea serpent, a giant snake or something prehistoric? Maybe someone reading this knows more details,if so please post in comments.


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