Okefenokee Bigfoot Attack - Okefenokee Swamp, Georgia
|Bigfoot Attack in the Okefenokee?
What really happened in Georgia's Okefenokee
Swamp during the winter of 1828-1829? Did a
Bigfoot attack or was it just a tall tale?
The vast swamp is one of the
world's largest, and has spawned
many legends over the years. One
is of a giant race said to live there.
BIGFOOT ATTACK IN THE OKEFENOKEE
Okefenokee Swamp, Georgia (1829)
A 19th Century Bigfoot Attack?
|Copyright 2012, 2014 & 2015 by Dale Cox
All rights reserved.
Last Update: January 16, 2015
Monsters & Ghosts of the South
Attack in the Swamp?
In February of 1829, a story broke
in U.S. newspapers of a bizarre
attack by a hairy giant that left
several hunters dead and missing
in the Okefenokee Swamp.
Thousands of alligators prove that
prehistoric creatures can thrive in
the Okefenokee. But could a hair
covered giant be among them?
The great swamp is a vast place
of wetlands, lakes, prairies, bogs
and islands. It is mysterious and
Did a Bigfoot really attack a party of men in
the Okefenokee Swamp in 1829? Or was it
all a tall tale? The answer to those questions
may never be known, but the story is one of
many that add to the mystery of the swamp.
The tale originated near the south end of
Ware County, where the line that divides
Georgia from Florida passes through the
Okefenokee. In 1829, the first settlers were
just pushing into the fringes of the swamp.
Surrounded by the stunning beauty of the
swamp, they quickly picked up on an Indian
legend that held a mysterious race of people
lived on an island deep in the wilderness.
So far as is known, this legend first appeared
in print in 1806 in Jedidiah Morse's book,
Geography Made Easy. In his section on
Georgia, Morse repeated a legend that a
group of Indian hunters had gone into the
swamp and become lost. When they were in
a desperate condition, a party of the most
beautiful women they had ever seen came to
...[They] being lost in inextricable swamps
and bogs and on the point of perishing, were
unexpectedly relived by a company of
beautiful women, whom they call daughters
of the sun, who kindly gave them such
provisions as they had with them, consisting
of fruit and corn cakes....
The tale as repeated by Morse continued with
the women warning the hunters to flee as
fast as possible to their own country,
"because their husbands were fierce men
and cruel to strangers." These men of the
swamp were said by the Creek Indians to be
of gigantic stature and both cruel and warlike.
The winter of 1828-1829 was extremely dry
and two men living on the edges of the
swamp decided to explore as deep into it as
they could. Accompanied by a boy, they went
into the Okefenokee and over a course of two
weeks continued to penetrate deeper and
deeper into it.
As they explored the very heart of the swamp,
they made a startling discovery of gigantic
...The length of the foot was eighteen, and the
breadth nine inches. The monster, from
every appearance, must have moved forward
in an easy or hesitating gait, his stride, from
heel to toe, being a trifle over six feet.
(Milledgeville, Georgia, Statesman January 1829, republished by the
Connecticut Sentinel February 9, 1829.)
The men, as newspapers of the time noted,
"had seen enough." Ending their expedition
and retreating out of the swamp, they related
to their friends and neighbors what they had
The story excited the curiosity of a party of
hunters who lived just across the Florida line.
Nine in number, they went into the swamp to
find the mysterious giant. They were guided
by one of the members of the original party:
..Following, for some days, the direction of
their guide, they came at length upon the
track first discovered, some vestiges of which
were still remaining; pursuing these traces
several days longer, they came to a halt on a
little eminence, and determined to pitch their
camp, and refresh themselves for the day.
The expedition was described in detail in
newspaper reports published in February
1829. Those accounts indicated that as the
hunters were discharging their guns to
reload them with fresh powder for the night, a
wild animal charged their camp:
...[T]he next minute he was full in their view,
advancing upon them with a terrible look and
ferocious mien. Our little band instinctively
gathered close in a body and presented their
rifles. The huge being, nothing daunted,
bounded upon his victims, and in the same
instant received the contents of seven rifles.
The fight, however, did not end there:
...[H]e did not fall alone, nor until he had
glutted his wrath with the death of five of
them, which he effected by wringing the head
from the body. - Writhing and exhausted, at
length he fell, with his hapless prey beneath
As the creature lay dying on the ground,
writhing and sometimes roaring, the men
who survived the attack gathered around it to
make a closer inspection. The creature was
found to measure thirteen feet from head to
toe, and "his breadth and volume of just
Immediately fearful that the dying monster's
cries might attract others of ts kind, the
hunters fled the swamp. The men who died
in the battle with the creature were left lying
where they had fallen.
It is a remarkable story, but could it be true?
The honest answer is that no one knows.
The newspaper correspondent who reported
it wrote that people living in Ware County on
the margins of the Okefenokee Swamp
clearly believed it.
Either way, the story of the 1829 attack was
one of the earliest written accounts of the
creature we know today as Bigfoot or
Sasquatch. Sightings of some kind of a large
creature in the swamp and discoveries of
large footprints continue to be reported from
the area to this day.
To learn about another 19th century Bigfoot
sighting, be sure to read our page on the
Arkansas Wild Man. Also check out our page
on the 19th century capture of the Wild Man of
Ocheesee Pond in Florida.
Click here to learn more about the history of
the Okefenokee Swamp.