Skip to main content

U.S. Government's Official Report of a Sea Serpent



Historical newspapers provide numerous accounts of sightings of strange creatures of the land, sky, and sea-- some more reliable than others.  The following article, which appeared in the Nov. 23, 1901 edition of the Akron Daily Democrat, is worth mentioning because (to the best of our knowledge) it was the first, last, and only time that a sighting of a sea serpent was officially verified by the U.S. government. 

Washington, Nov. 23.-- Our old tried and true friend, the sea serpent, has bobbed up again.  There can be no shadow of doubt of his existence now for Uncle Sam himself stands sponsor for him.  In an official report backed by all the official proofs in the way of signatures that can be asked for, the Hydrographic Bureau described his snakeship.  The following is the report made by Henry H. Neligan, third officer of the steamship Irade, regular observer for the bureau, dated Oct. 26:

"At 11 a.m. today in latitude 27 degrees, 26 minutes north and longitude 90 degrees 18 minutes west, passed a large sea serpent appearing about 100 feet long.  The head had a blunt square nose and was ejecting water to a height of two or three feet from its nostrils.  The animal or fish had three distinct sets of fins and a tail lying across, like a porpoise.  On its back was a series of humps, like a camel.  It was heading about east (true) and moving slowly."


The part of the ocean specified is the Gulf of Mexico.  The word "true" within the parenthesis is not meant to be applied to the veracity of the story, but indicates that the direction taken by the monster was "true east" instead of the mariner's east, as measured by the magnetic compass.




(Editor's Note: the original newspaper article from 1901 can be viewed here)

Popular posts from this blog

The Incest Capital of the World?

At the far eastern edge of Kentucky, nestled in Appalachia, resides Letcher County. In spite of its isolation and poverty (approximately 30% of the county's population lives below the poverty line), Letcher County has managed to grow at an impressive rate, from a population of just 9,172 in 1900 to a present-day population of nearly 25,000. However, even if Letcher County tripled or quadrupled its present population, there's still a pretty good chance that virtually all of the county's inhabitants would be related to each other-- thanks to one particularly fertile family whose astounding rate of reproduction can put even the friskiest rabbit to shame.

Around the year 1900, Letcher County was the home of a man by the name of Jason L. Webb, who made national headlines for having the one of the largest families in the world. According to newspaper reports of the era, Jason had 19 children, 175 grandchildren, and 100 great-grandchildren. Perhaps even more impressive was his b…

Remembering the ill-fated voyage of the Aerowagon

From 1917 to 1922, the Bolshevik-led Red Army battled the anti-Communist White Army during the Russian Civil War.  By the end of 1919 the Bolsheviks had taken the cities of Omsk and Kiev, and had successfully repelled the White Russian siege of Petrograd.  However, the Bolshevik's momentum would be short-lived as the White Army, after retreating across the Baikal, regrouped and joined forces with Gigory Semyonov's Transbaikal Cossacks.  As the Red Army's losses began to mount, especially in Poland, the Bolsheviks attempted to gain a competitive advantage by embracing new technologies, sometimes with disastrous results.  Such is the sad tale of young inventor Valerian Abakovsky and his Aerowagon.

Abakovsky was a Latvian-born inventor who earned his living as a chauffeur for Cheka, the state security organization created by Lenin.  His position granted him access to many high-ranking Soviets and, although details are scarce, Abakovsky most likely used his influence within t…

Black Eyed Children Finally Explained!

Last month, we received an email from a reader in Michigan, in response to our article debunking the "black eyed children" phenomenon, which links these so-called "paranormal" entities to recreational drug use.  The reader, whom we will call Onizuka in order to protect his identity, claims that not only is he familiar with BEKs- but that he was one.  "Onizuka" agreed to speak with JOTB via Yahoo instant messenger.  Ironically, this conversation took place on 4/20, a date which is embraced by those who are part of the drug culture.


JOTB:Thanks for taking the time to speak with us.  In one of your previous emails, you stated that you were a "black eyed kid".  What did you mean by that?

Onizuka:  Last November I was driving late at night at turned on the radio and came across an episode of Coast to Coast AM and the topic of the show was black eyed children.  It convinced me to do some research on the topic, and that's how I found your article.  A…