October 6, 2020 by Bret Kramer (aka WinstonP)
Our first swing through New England’s menagerie of mysterious (and probably mythical) creatures has reached New Hampshire, a state possessing surprisingly few cryptids.
Since we’ve been focused on humanoid entities this week, I thought we should discuss the so-called Devil Monkey.
Danville is a small town in the hills of southern New Hampshire, north of Haverhill, MA. Certainly not the place you might expect to run into a strange primate and yet in 2001, that is in fact what almost a dozen locals reported.
One of the clearest sightings was by the local fire chief, who reported spotting an ape-like creature leaping out of a tree and onto the road:
“It jumped out of the trees,” Kimball said. “As soon as he hit the ground, he took a giant leap and went back where he came from. The first thought I had was: That’s nothing that’s native to here.”Seacoast Online, Sep 14, 2001
Others reported seeing the creature moving in and around Danville or hearing its cries from the woods around town. Here’s a contemporary story about the sightings with more accounts from other witnesses.
Ultimately most of the locals decided, based on rather slim evidence, that the creature was an escaped pet monkey from parts unknown. Attempts to corral or capture – at one point including a local DJ dressing up in a gorilla costume – the creature failed, and after a few weeks the sights tapered off. The thing was possibly sighted once more a decade later, when an ape was spotted climbing a tree. The witness was a visitor to Danville and was apparently unaware of the sightings a decade earlier. It has not been seen since.
Some have attempted to link these sightings to other weird apes, collectively termed “Devil Monkeys” (hence the name) at a number of locations across the U.S., but the size and shape of those sundry hominids suggests the only thing they have in common in people looking for a pattern.
Wholly unrelated, but fun to mention, is the unknown Connecticut gravestone carver later dubbed “The Bozrah Devil Carver”. I talked about him back in Gravetober. Nothing to do with our monkey, but I am fond of eccentric gravestones.