The American Indians have tales of the Wendigo, dating back to their forefathers. The Inuit Indians of the region called the creature by various names, including Wendigo, Witigo, Witiko and (Wee-Tee-Go), but each of them was roughly translated to mean “the evil spirit that devours humans.”
There were so many sightings over the years about a mysterious creature who attacked hunters and campers in the shadowy forests in the upper regions of Minnesota.
Sighting of the creature have inspired countless inspiration for monsters in folklore, and creatures from another world in both movies and televison.
Around 1860, a German explorer translated Wendigo to mean “cannibal” among the tribes along the Great Lakes. The Wendigo is generally said to have glowing eyes, long yellowed fangs and a protruding tongue so long that it has to keep its mouth open at all times. Most have a sallow, yellowish skin but others are said to be matted with hair. They are tall and lanky and are driven by a horrible hunger.
Others claim “The Wendigo”, is an evil spirit of the woods. The spirit was said to have a voracious appetite for human flesh and the many forest dwellers who disappeared over the years were said to be victims of the monster.
So many sighting of the creature persisted until stories were passed along as a warning to the other residents who settled there. So many reports were made that eventually it was cemented into the local culture and a collection of those stories were written by Algernon Blackwood.
A Wendigo allegedly made a number of appearances near a town called Rosesu in Northern Minnesota from the late 1800’s through the 1920’s. Each time that it was reported, an unexpected death followed. Acccording to the locals version of the legend, the Wendigo would often be heard (banshee-like) during an attack to signal a killing.
One of the most famous Wendigo hunters was a Cree Indian named Jack Fiddler. He claimed to kill at least 14 of the creatures in his lifetime, although the last murder resulted in his imprisonment at the age of 87.
In October 1907, Fiddler and his son, Joseph, were tried for the murder of a Cree Indian woman. They both pleaded guilty to the crime but defended themselves stating that the woman who tried to help them locate the Wendigo by summoning the spirits of the forest, had been possessed.
She had superhuman strength possessed by the evil spirit and became so violent, that they had no choice but to execute her, because she attacked other members of the tribe.
There are still many stories told of Wendigo’s that have been seen in northern Ontario, near the Cave of the Wendigo, and around the town of Kenora, where a creature has been spotted by traders, trackers and trappers for decades. There are many who still believe that the Wendigo roams the woods and the prairies of northern Minnesota and Canada.
Canada has hundreds of thousands of forest, most unsettled and that is where it is said to roam now, only searching the more densely areas of the United States like Minnesota for food by necessity.
With the advent of technology: drones, camera phones and the Internet, grainy videos of unidentified objects and creatures moving thru abandoned or heavily wooded areas continues to increase.
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