NOTES ON CAIN . . .
The Cain question has been around for a long time and although some believe he is dead, more believe the Bible to say that he was cursed to live forever [at least while this earth is in existence] and will not die until the end thereof. Genesis 4:14-15 notes that he was cursed to live, not cursed to die, and it was the Lord who put that curse on him. More to the point, the Lord also pronounced a curse on any man who would kill Cain, and to better identify him, put “a mark” on Cain. In short, Cain was cursed to live. He’s the ultimate example of the movie Groundhog Day.
Are there others here on earth that aren’t “normal”? Yes. Today there are five people on the earth who aren’t in an “earthly” state: the three Nephites, John, and Cain. None of this group is subject to death as you and I know it.
The David Patten quote is found in all Church literature (even on the Church’s Infobase) and cites an incident that he, Patten, would have no reason to make up. We can thank A. O. Smoot [my grandmother’s grandfather] for writing down the incident.
President Kimball uses the Patten quote in his book The Miracle of Forgiveness. I don’t believe he would use such if he doubted its veracity.
Thus, standing safely beside President Kimball, I too believe Cain is still very much with us. The article (below) on Bigfoot, or the many TV stories of such in the northern California region, or the original Reader’s Digest story (mid 1960’s) of the sighting and the only video footage we have, all suggest there really is something out there. With all the sightings, is Cain jumping from place to place? Most calmly answer by saying he has some offspring, very mortal, who look like him and live with him. So while there are more than a few Bigfoot individuals out there, we still have only one Cain.
But why haven’t we caught him? Consider the consequences to Cain were that to happen. If he were caught and someone believed he had found the Cain of the bible then he could conclude Cain couldn’t be killed. I believe every effort would then be taken to kill him, in every way possible. What could be more unique that an exhibit of a person who cannot be killed? Something immortal? That’s why Cain has done all he can to avoid being seen. I wouldn’t either.
Is this enough to convince a person that Cain is still with us? I think so; others disagree. So be it.
THE LIFE OF DAVID W. PATTEN
By L.A. Wilson
. . . of Cain to Brother David W. Patten in the State of Tennessee, about which you wrote to me, I will say that according to the best of my recollection it was in the month of September, 1835.
It was in the evening, just twilight, when Brother Patton rode up to my father's house, alighted from his mule and came into the house. The family immediately observed that his countenance was quite changed. My mother having first noticed his changed appearance said: “Brother Patten, are you sick?” He replied that he was not, but had just met with a very remarkable personage who had represented himself as being Cain, who murdered his brother Abel. He went on to tell the circumstances as near as I can recall in the following language:
“As I was riding along the road on my mule 1 suddenly noticed a very strange personage walking beside me. He walked along beside me for about two miles. His head was about even with my shoulders as I sat in my saddle.
He wore no clothing, but was covered with hair. His skin was very dark. I asked him where he dwelt and he replied that he had no home, that he was a wanderer in the earth and traveled to and fro. He said he was a very miserable creature, that he had earnestly sought death during his sojourn upon the earth, but that he could not die, and his mission was to destroy the souls of men. About the time he expressed himself thus, I rebuked him in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by virtue of the Holy Priesthood, and commanded him to go hence, and he immediately departed out of my sight. When he left me I found myself near your house.”
There was much conversation about the circumstances between Brother Patton and my family which I don't recall, but the above is in substance his statement to us at the time. The date is, to the best of my recollection, and I think it is correct, but it may possible have been in the spring of l836, but I feel quite positive that the former date is right.
Hoping the above all be satisfactory to you and answers your purpose, I am with the kindest regards, as ever,
Your friend and Brother,
A. O. Smoot
Incidents with Cain:
1981 B/M class, fall semester, a student said that her grandfather told her of this incident when he was fishing (in Montana). The age of the grandfather would place this incident in the 1940’s or 50’s.
He said he was in an open valley with mostly open land around him and a hill behind him which ran down to the river. As he was fishing he sensed something coming up behind him because the hair on the back of his neck started to tingle. He turned and saw a very large black man, covered with hair and wearing no clothes, coming down the hill toward him.
He immediately realized that there was no place to run or hide and the river was too big to allow him escape, so he stood there and waited for the creature to approach. It came directly to him and asked him “What time is it?” He replied with the time and was told, “No. Not the time. What time [year] is it?” upon hearing the answer he returned up the side of the hill and disappeared.
1992 August Article in Rexburg Standard Journal
Thursday evening eight people in Spaulding, ID, saw a large hairy creature close to the visitor center in Nez Perce National Park. All did not see the creature at the same time but all saw it that evening. It was larger than a man, was covered with dark hair, and walked upright. A photo was taken but without a telephoto lens it was only a black spot on the picture.
SPALDING, Idaho - Eight Spalding area residents say they saw a large hairy creature Thursday evening that could only have been a “bigfoot.”
The unidentified creature was spotted descending a hillside southwest of the Nez Perce National Historical Park’s visitor center at Spalding.
“I looked up and it was just too big and dark to be a man,” Becky Johnson said Friday. “It was 6 or 7 o’clock. It was still daylight. There was still a lot of daylight left.”
Johnson tried to photograph the creature as it walked across a plowed field almost a half-mile away. But she said her camera was not equipped with a telephoto lens and the small negative recorded just a tiny black speck.
Frank Walker, the park superintendent, said a park employee also reported seeing a large, dark creature walking down the hillside Thursday night.
Tony Arthur saw the creature much closer up. He and two other family members spotted the suspected Sasquatch on the hillside from the home of Moffett and Rachel Johnson.
The animal came into view from the Johnson home when it crossed the ridgeline heading away from the park and toward Lapwai, Arthur said.
Several family members said the animal was clearly walking on two legs, swinging its arms as it walked.
Arthur said be and two others drove down a nearby gravel road to get closer. They spotted the creature crouched behind some bushes at the edge of the field, about a quarter mile from U.S. Highway 95.
The animal was covered with long, shaggy dark hair, Arthur said. He and others who saw the creature did not appear to be a bear because it walked upright for such a long distance.
Is There an American
(Reader’s Digest, 1968) Condensed from an article by James B. Shuman in West magazine, December 15, 1968, published by Los Angeles Times.
For more than a century a strange legend has stalked the remote and rumpled mountains of Northwest America. It tells of huge, hairy creatures which walk erect and look more like men than apes. Is it truth, or is it fiction ?
“It was in the middle of the night and I was groggy with sleep,” 75-year-old Albert Ostrnan recalls. Something grabbed my sleeping bag and lifted me off the ground. I reached for my sheath knife and couldn't get at it. The beast, or whatever it was threw me over its shoulder like a sack of flour. I could feel it striding on two legs.”
Ostman, a husky logger looking for gold in British Columbia in 1924, estimates that he was carried across wild and rugged terrain for three hours. “I was too scared to struggle,” he says. Finally his captor stopped and dropped him to the ground. In the dim light of dawn, Ostman gazed up at a group of creatures circling him and chattering unintelligibly. “I had never believed in the Indian legends of ‘Sasquatch,’ but I knew that’s what they wore,” Ostman explains. “They looked like a cross between a man and an ape. Their bodies were covered with hair, and they had bulging muscles. They were bigger and taller than human beings; one of them must have been nearly eight feet tall.
“For six days I was held captive. Only in the confusion when one became violently ill from swallowing an entire tin of snuff that I had was I able to escape.”
Ostman's bizarre story is but a single chapter in one of the world's most intriguing mysteries: Does there exist, in the Pacific Northwest, a subhuman creature, perhaps an American cousin of the Abominable Snowman of the Himalayas? Like that fabled Snowman, such a hominid could be a link between man and ape—a vital piece in the puzzle of man's evolution.
Scores of eyewitnesses have told of seeing giant, ape-like creatures and their unique, oversized footprints—some measuring 16 inches and more in length—in the mountain areas of the Pacific Northwest. In Canada, they are generally called Sasquatch, an English version of an Indian name. In the United States, many call them Bigfoot.
The Case for Bigfoot. Though the stories of sightings are remarkably consistent and similar, there would appear to be little chance of people working together to perpetrate a hoax, since the reports have been so separated in time and location, No one knows how many people believe they have seen a Sasquatch, because many arc reluctant to talk about it. As one witness put it, “It's better to keep your mouth shut than have everybody say you're crazy.”
Even so, John Green, editor/publisher of the Advance, the newspaper serving the Agassiz-Harrison Lake area of British Columbia, has collected more than 250 reports of sightings, photographs of footprint and other evidence, covering an area from Alaska to Mexico, from the Pacific Coast to northern Michigan. Like many others, Green started as a scoffer, changed to a believer as evidence mounted.
Here is a partial sample of that evidence:
· The Daily British Colonist, published in Victoria, B.C., reported that on June 30, 1884, the crew of a train running from Lytton to Yale— about 80 miles east of Vancouver— had captured “a creature who may truly be called half man and half beast. His entire body, excepting his hands and feet, is covered with glossy hair. His forearm is much longer than a man's, and he possesses extraordinary strength.” The creature, whom the railway crew named ''Jacko,'' was exhibited in Yale (Canada), but no one has been able to find out what happened to him.
· In July 1924, near Mt. St. Helens, in what is now Gifford Pinchot National Forest of Washington, five prospectors reported that their cabin had been attacked by a band of mans-apes that hurled boulders onto the roof, tried to force the cabin door by ramming it with their bodies, an screamed in loud wails at the men inside, who had earlier shot at two of their band. A posse of lawmen and reporters found the cabin badly damaged and hundreds of giant footprints all around it. The area came to be called Ape Canyon, and scores of people have since reported seeing the man-apes in the vicinity. Several men have disappeared there mysteriously, leaving no trace.
· One midafternoon in September 1941, at Ruby Creek, about 30, miles up the Fraser River from Agassiz, Mrs. George Chapman saw a large, man-like animal emerge prom the woods. She and her three children fled from their home in terror. Her husband and friends from the village later found evidence that the creature had entered a shed and scattered about some salt fish from a barrel.
· In Octobcr 1955, William Roe was hunting on Mica Mountain near the village of Tete Jaune Cache in British Columbia. He said he saw an upright figure only 75 yards away, weighing perhaps 300 pounds and covered from head to foot with dark-brown, silvcr-tipped hair. “The thought struck me that if I shot it I would have a specimen of great interest to scientists the world over. I leveled my rifle. But when the creature turned its head to look in my direction, I felt that it was a human being, and I knew I would never forgive myself if I killed it.”
· Other less subjective evidence has been collected over the years in the form of hair and droppings. Scientists who have analyzed hair samples say they come from no known animal.” The droppings, human-like in form but large enough to come from a big horse, have contained vegetable matter and the hair of small rodents. No Bigfoot bodies have been found—but nature disposes quickly of dead animal matter.
· Perhaps the most intriguing evidence is a 16mm color movie made in 1967 by Roger Patterson, a 34-year-old Yakima, Wash., rancher. Long interested in Sasquatch, Patterson had become convinced that the only way to prove its existence was to get clear photographs. In October 1967, he heard of fresh tracks along Bluff Creek in northern California. Patterson and Bob Gimlin, an experienced animal tracker, set out to investigate.
They scouted the area on horse back for a week and a half. Early in the afternoon of October 20, they came to a bend in the creek where a gigantic stump, overturned by a flood, obscured the view ahead. Patterson's horse stopped and snorted then reared and fell on its side. Moments later, Patterson saw what had startled his mount. “This creature was on my left, about 125 feet across the creek,” he recalls. “Its head was very human, though considerably more slanted, and with a large forehead and wide nostrils. Its arm hung almost to its knees when it walked. Its hair was two to four inches long, brown underneath, lighter at the top, and covering the entire body except for the face. And it was a female; it had big, pendulous breasts.”
Patterson reached into his saddlebag and grabbed his movie camera. The creature, meanwhile, was walking across a sandbar toward the hillside. Patterson began trotting after it, shooting pictures. At one point, the creature turned and stared curiously at the camera. Then it went into the woods and out of sight. Gimlin began to give chase, but Patterson, who had used up all his film, told him to stop. “I didn't want to be there alone without a weapon,” he says.
Nine days later, Robert Titmus, a former taxidermist who lives in Kitimat, B.C., examined and made plaster casts of ten of the creature's huge footprints. Titmus has studied Bigfoot intensively since 1958, and considers himself an expert at spotting the occasional hoax. Said he: “I can conceive of no method by which these tracks might have been faked. Tests indicated that the creature that made them would have to weigh at least 600 to 700 pounds.”
Screen Test. Patterson has since shown his film to scientists. The somewhat blurred, Bigfoot segment shows the creature walking away with a man-like stride, swinging enormous arms. Although some scientists immediately branded the creature in the film a hoax, questioning the man-like fluidity of its movements, others kept an open mind. “The presence of unknown humanoid creatures in the Pacific Northwest,” says John R. Napier, director of the Smithsonian Institution's Primate Biology Department, “is a possibility that should not be discounted.” After all, scientific annals are littered with the tarnished reputations of men who dismissed initial reports of the existence of the giant squid, the gorilla, the okapi and the giant panda.
Donald Abbott, anthropologist on the staff of the Provincial Museum in Victoria, B.C., told me he had entered the investigation as a skeptic. He now says, “If the evidence of which I am aware has been the work of hoaxers, it would be one of the most elaborate hoaxes ever perpetrated. I find this possibility almost as incredible as that of the existence of such a creature.”
An unclassified animal could be prowling the Pacific Northwest. For so rugged is the 150,000-square-mile area in which sightings of Bigfoot have been reported that major sections have never really been penetrated. In Washington, Oregon and California there are 70,000 square miles of national forest, and for some sections the only maps available are those based on aerial surveys. British Columbia is even less developed. Nearly 250,000 square miles of its total area—a region almost the size of Texas—have just one main road and a handful of small villages. It is the kind of wilderness in which animals with only normal cunning easily remain out of sight of man.
The Search Goes On. Perhaps by the time you read this, Bigfoot's existence will have been proved. Roger Patterson, financed by $75,000 from the Northwest Research Association, of Yakima, Wash., a maker of documentary films, is continuing his search. This time he is using lures, dogs and tranquilizer guns, hoping to capture a living specimen.
Others have tried before to capture a Bigfoot, without success. The most notable was Tom Slick, the Texas oilman who mounted an expedition shortly before his death in 1962 after becoming convinced that there was as much evidence for the Abominable Snowman in North America as he had found in two expeditions to the Himalayas. “If such an animal exists, and is caught,” W. C. Osman Hill, of the Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center at Emory University in Atlanta, has said, “it could well be one of the most important finds in history.”
IS THERE A BIGFOOT?
By LARRY WOODY
American Way, October 1981, p.143
You listen to the tales and you take your choice. Despite many reported sightings, no one has made a photograph of any big, hairy monster. But Tennessean Rex North is among those who steadfastly believe irrefutable evidence soon will be produced.
ost scientists, biologists, and naturalists will tell you that Bigfoot doesn't exist—if they tell you anything at all. Many decline even to discuss the subject.
“There is no such creature alive in the U.S. today,” says one veteran wildlife biologist. Period.
Then there is Mrs. Bertha Seagraves. Granted she holds no degree in biology, mammalogy, zoology, or any of the animal sciences. And as far as Bigfoot is concerned, she confesses she had never heard the name before. All Seagraves knows is what she saw, heard, and smelled one fall evening in the backyard of the family farm in middle Tennessee.
“It was just getting dark when the chickens began fussing and carrying on,” she recalls. “I flipped on the back‑porch light and started out to see what was going on. I figured a possum or something was prowling around,”
The porch light cast a dim circle of illumination around the yard. Seagraves stepped off the porch and immediately was met by an overpowering odor that made her gasp and stop in her tracks. “Like to took my breath‑away,” she says. “It was just awful. Then about that time, I saw it. It wasn't that far away [she gestures toward the center of her living room], just standing, there, looking right at me.”
She continues, “Something about eight, nine feet tall with black hair all over it, just standing there kinda stooped over. Its eyes were shining in the porch light [human eyes do not reflect light], and I just stood there for a minute, sort of frozen. Then I stepped backwards, trying to get back up on the porch. When I moved, the thing growled and turned and disappeared. I could hear it running off into the dark. And I could still smell it after it was gone.”
Seagraves relates her story calmly and matter-of-factly. She also has a reply for those who ask for her story and then express doubts: “You wanted to know what I saw and I just told you. I've no reason to make something like that up. That thing was as close to me as you are right now.”
Several hundred miles away from the Seagraves farmhouse, two Indians were strolling along a path near Little Eagle, South Dakota. Darkness was rapidly falling as they made their way down the sagebrush-choked trail. Suddenly they heard a strange grunting sound. Almost simultaneously a sour, foul aroma permeated the area. They beat a hasty retreat and so did the thing in the brush, “bellowing and shrieking” they told the head of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Later they returned to the area and discovered footprints measuring between 16 and 18 inches in length and 7 inches in width.
In Rice, North Dakota, a rancher was searching for stray cattle when he spotted a creature. He says it was “eight or nine feet tall, like a big monkey.” The rancher adds: “I took off after it in my pickup and it ran like a horse. It jumped a creek and disappeared into the brush.”
In Ocala, Florida, a Baptist minister sighted “a mysterious hairy creature lurking in the shadows of a palmetto grove; it was at least 7 1/2 feet tall, maybe animal, maybe human.' Whatever it was ran into the Ocala National Forest and disappeared.
Near Memphis, Tennessee, two duck hunters entered a marsh on a cold December predawn and heard what one described as “the most uncanny sound of my life; it was kind of a screaming and growling, the kind of sound that makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.” Then he saw it: “A big, hairy creature, standing upright, moving through the marsh. It wasn't a bear, and I don't know any other animal that big.”
The foregoing are a scant handful of more than 800 reported sightings of what Newsweek magazine called 'the foul‑smelling mystery-beast.” Sightings have been reported by people from all walks of life. Even certain wildlife experts who once pooh‑poohed the
existence of any such creature are beginning to grudgingly concede there may be something more than overripe imaginations to the Bigfoot legend.
“There have been too many reports by too many people whose descriptions are too similar for there to be nothing to it,” says one. “Exactly what they're seeing, I won't speculate on. But there's definitely something out there.”
Something, yes. And, taking the reports at face value, far more than one. But what? For centuries natives have told tales of the yeti—the Abominable Snowman—that they say roams the Himalaya Mountains between India and Tibet. Yeti has been translated as “all-devouring creature.”
North American Indian tribes passed from generation to generation accounts of confrontations with a great, shaggy, manlike creature they called Sasquatch. The Indians also referred to the monster as Bigfoot for obvious reasons. Footprints supposedly left behind by the beast measure from 16 to 19 inches in length and from 7 to 9 inches in width.
In Florida a reported creature fitting the same description has been tabbed the “skunk ape” for obvious reasons of odor and appearance.
While scientists and biologists generally remain skeptical, one group in Nashville, Tennessee, has been busy compiling Bigfoot data for more than five years. The group, composed of a dozen men, calls itself the Southeastern Wildlife Research Association (SWRA). That's a fancy name for a Bigfoot search party. The members are adventurers who are attracted by the aura of mystery that surrounds the reported beast sightings.
Jim Vincent, manager of a school supplies company, and Rex North, a prominent Nashville musician, founded the SWRA. Their convictions are simple and steadfast: “We know Bigfoot's out there,” says North. “There is absolutely no question about it. Anybody who will look at the evidence with an open mind can't dispute the fact.”
Reminded that the bottom line is still that the creature hasn't been captured, North concedes: “No, we can't produce him. Not yet. But we do have plaster casts of his footprints, samples of his hair, and a tape recording of his cry. We know where he lives, what he looks like, what he eats, and even certain things about his temperament. We have interviewed literally hundreds of people who have encountered the animal. We feel we are pretty thoroughly acquainted with our quarry.”
This store of Bigfoot lore wasn't accumulated overnight. For five years SWRA members have been conducting excursions into suspected Bigfoot stomping grounds, camping for days at a time, checking reported sightings, interviewing witnesses, combing the brush for clues.
Their conclusions, based on the evidence the group has compiled: The creature, when mature, weighs between 500 and 800 pounds. It stands between 6 and 10 feet tall: It has long, dangling arms, huge hands, and a barrel chest. It walks in the primate position, stooped at the shoulders. It appears to have little neck, and the head is rounded and slightly peaked at the back. The eyes are small, deep-set, and reflect light at night. The hair is coarse and thick and varies in color from black to brown and even white and gray. (North theorizes that the hair color progresses from blond to black to gray as the creature ages.) The casts that SWRA says are of Bigfoot footprints measure 16 2/3 inches long and 6 1/2 inches wide.
Bigfoot's diet is said to be varied and it's not a picky eater. “We have found bark, leaves, and berries in his stool, as well as small animal bones, fur, and feathers,” says North. “We believe he is like man, both vegetarian and carnivore. We believe he will feed on whatever is available.”
And about the rank odor that envelopes Bigfoot: “We suspect that the smell emanates from a gland, possibly a musk gland related to the reproductive system,” says North. “Many animals give off a musky, unpleasant odor during their rutting seasons and it's reasonable to believe this could be the nature of the infamous Bigfoot aroma.”
North further theorizes—and stresses that it's pure theory—that Bigfoot is a nomadic, family-oriented creature, moving about in small groups. He believes the creature's natural cunning and retiring nature have prevented its destruction by some overzealous hunter.
North realizes not everybody buys his theories. He shrugs: “Sure, we're ridiculed, made fun of. This is the space age when men are going to the moon and orbiting around the earth. Scientists have every thing all figured out, know all the answers. Then all of a sudden people start reporting giant, hairy monsters prowling around . . . the same sort of tales that used to scare the cave men a million years ago. Modern man likes to think he's too sophisticated to believe in anything like that. Well, the simple truth is there is something out there.”
North doesn't want to harm the creature—whatever it is. “Once one walked right up on us on a moonlit trail. We had a rifle and could have easily shot it, but that's the last thing we want to do,” he explains. What the SWRA would like to do is get clear, unimpeachable photographs of Bigfoot or get close enough to fire a tranquilizer dart at the creature. Two members of the group are doctors and they are licensed to carry tranquilizers.
The SWRA keeps most of its information secret. North says that is for two reasons: “First, we want to protect our sources. Lots of people won't tell us anything if they think we might reveal their names. It's kind of like reporting a flying saucer; they're afraid their neighbors will make fun of them. Then, too, we want to protect Bigfoot. A couple summers ago word spread about a sighting in northern Alabama. In no time at all the place was crawling with people, most of them armed. I was afraid somebody was going to be hurt, most likely one of the so-called 'hunters' but perhaps even Big Foot himself. I personally can't understand the thinking of someone who would intentionally shoot what has to be the most rare, intriguing creature on earth, but that kind is there.”
There is a move afoot to have Bigfoot classified as an endangered species, thus affording it the same federal protection enjoyed by bald eagles and other scarce fauna. The drawback, of course, is that Bigfoot is so scarce that only a relative handful of people seriously believe it exists.
“Let 'em doubt,” says North. “It may be tomorrow, or it may be next week, or it may be next year. But it's just a matter of time until we produce Bigfoot. He's out there and we're going to keep looking until we find him.”
Then, with Bigfoot properly identified, neatly labeled, and biologically classified, it will be just another species of North American mammal instead of a howling, glowing-eyed mystery monster.
“I've thought about that,” says North. “We're closing in on him and we're going to corner Bigfoot before long. And that'll really be sort of a sad day, won't it.”