11/30/14  #798
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He stays up late into the night - fearful to sleep because of those who watch in the dark. They watch from the sky. The watch from the streets. They watch with the cold, glassy stare of hidden cameras. His communications are not safe. They read all that goes in, and all that goes out. His entertainment is monitored 24 hours a day. They know what TV shows he sees and which web sites on the Internet he visits. But despite all they see and do - nothing can prevent the arrival of his favorite weekly e-mail newsletter of the strange and weird. Yes that's RIGHT! Conspiracy Journal is here once again to reveal all the deep, dark secrets that THEY don't want YOU to know!
 


This week Conspiracy Journal brings you such eye-straining tales as:

"Former NASA Employee" Says She Saw Men on Mars -
Pterosaur Sighting in Central Arkansas -
Loud Boom Heard at Same Time in UK and Upstate NY
AND: Another Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay?

All these exciting stories and MORE in this week's issue of
CONSPIRACY JOURNAL!

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- TAKE WITH A GRAIN OF SALT DEPARTMENT -

"Former NASA Employee" Says She Saw Men on Mars

A woman named "Jackie," who claims to be a former NASA employee, called Coast to Coast AM in the U.S. She claimed she had seen evidence of two human figures walking towards the Viking lander on Mars in 1979.

The "former NASA employee" asked the radio show presenter to solve a 27-year-old mystery for her. She claimed she had worked for NASA and that her job was to handle the downlink telemetry from the lander. The Viking lander was the first vehicle to send back pictures of the surface of the Red Planet.

She said that while she was working, she saw two people walking across the Martian surface. She continued that she and six colleagues were watching the footage of the Viking rover moving around on multiple screens when she noticed two men in spacesuits walking to the Viking Explorer from the horizon. She added the men's suits looked protective but unlike what astronauts wore.

The "former NASA employee" said she and her colleagues were maintaining the equipment when suddenly the video feed got cut off. She went on to say that when they ran upstairs, they found the door was locked and paper was taped over the door so nothing could be seen. She posed a question to the radio presenter asking whether or not the two men she saw were guys from NASA. The agency has yet to comment on the claim.

Blogs that report on UFO and conspiracy theories have backed the "former NASA employee." They claimed humans had been on Mars to polish off the lander's solar panels. Metro.co.uk wrote that this seemed off because if the humans were there, they could have filled petrol into the lander or take photos themselves. A few other conspiracy theorists claimed that in the sixties, there were secret landings on Mars. They further claimed that the Apollo landings were a cover-up for wider exploration of the solar system.

An audio recording, titled "NASA Worker Sees Men Walking Over To Viking Lander On Mars", was posted on YouTube by YouTube channel Starman Chronicles. The video has managed to get more than 11,000 views and about 16 comments as of this writing.

Source: International Business Times
http://au.ibtimes.com/articles/574079/20141126/woman-former-nasa-employee
-humans-mars-1979.htm#.VHozWzHF9Zq

- STRANGE CREATURES FROM TIME AND SPACE DEPARTMENT -

Pterosaur Sighting in Central Arkansas

Here is a fascinating report from Lon Strickler on his website Phantoms & Monsters:

I received the following information and artist rendering from Laura Dean, who resides in central Arkansas. She states that she had conducted an interview with pterosaur/ropen researcher Jonathan David Whitcomb, who had previously written Why Believe in Living Pterosaurs? for 'Phantoms & Monsters':


    I decided that I needed to go to the grocery store to pick up a few things. I was out in the country, driving slowly, all alone, going over a bridge at about 2 pm on a sunny springtime afternoon in April 2012 when all of the sudden I see something coming up from underneath the bridge.

    From out of the passenger seat window and about 5 or 6 feet from me I can see something medium gray.....as it came up a little bit more I could see part of a wing, part of a beak, part of a head crest, and a big gold eye like a cats eye.

    It looked as if it was struggling to get up over that bridge and up over my truck because of its heavy weight.

    As I slowed down even more and looked at it closely the first thought to enter my mind was 'prehistoric' and my second thought was 'it looks like something that shouldn't still be living today'. My 3rd thought was 'prehistoric bird'.

    I then watched out the windshield as it flew up over my truck, up into the sky, and off toward a wooded area, southward.

    It seemed as if everything was in slow motion as I watched it fly up above my truck and fly away. I watched it's wings above me and how they looked and moved.

    They moved like a muscular wave from one end of the wing to the tip.

    The wings were thick like a steak,were shaped like an airplanes wings, and had three sections to them, with black creases or wrinkles running down them.

    And on the middle outside of the wings were what looked like fringes (which I found out later were claws or fingers).

    Next, I noticed the torso, how big in was and that it was shaped kind of like an egg, and then the head crest and how strange it looked up on top of the head. And how the head crest kind of bounced up and down as the creature flew.

    I also noticed the length of the neck.

    I noticed the legs and the tail. How the legs just floated in the air and kind of bounced on each side of the tail. And how the tail had a heart looking shape at the end of it.

    I also noticed that it had no feathers and that it was probably as big as a small airplane, and bigger than my little Chevy S10 pickup.

    I was in some kind of shock the rest of the day,just walking around and trying to function in some kind of a daze, going through the motions but only really half way there. My mind was trying to come to terms with what I had seen.

    I contacted two of my friends who suggested that what I had really seen was a Heron, Albatross, Pelican or some local big bird, even though I told them that this creature was huge, not big and had no feathers at all.

    Next, I contacted Cornell University Ornithology Lab and spoke to a lady named Laura. She said that there are no birds that match my description.

    Next I did an internet search under 'prehistoric birds'....but kept coming up with posts about Pterosaurs. I didn't really know what Pterosaurs were but I knew that they weren't birds and that they didn't exist any longer (or so I thought).

    So I became discouraged and gave up until early 2013.

    In early 2013 I decided to do another internet search under 'prehistoric birds' and up popped Jonathan David Whitcomb's name and the word Pterosaur again.

    This time I decided to contact this man via email and he responded to me and wanted to do an interview.

    During my interview with him I discovered that what I had seen was probably a Pterosaur. Now, all I had to do was come to terms with that.


Laura Dean later forwarded the following:

    Subject: Guesstimates, measurements, estimates

    I could come up with some measurements as to the size of the creature. But coming up with the measurements of the tail is the hardest. It was a short-tailed Pterosaur. Here are the measurements I have;

    1) Wings from tip of one wing to tip of the other: no smaller than 14 foot (maybe longer).

    2) Face, bill and eye to the end of (tip) the headcrest: 3 to 3 1/2 foot long (the headcrest was shaped like the prongs of a household hammerhead (kind of a horn with a curve in it).

    3) The whole animal from the tip of its head to the tip of it's tail was probably 9 foot to 12 foot long.

    4) It's eye was no smaller than 5 inches around.

    5) It's torso was probably 4 foot to to 5 foot long and shaped kind of like a lemon.....only longer (an elongated lemon).

    6) Even though the tip of the Pterosaurs left wing was 5 or 6 foot from me as it was coming up beside my truck I could not see the tail until it was up in the air and above my truck. I want to say that the tail was 2 or 3 foot long.

    I remember the tail being just slightly longer than the feet as it was flying above me. It was the tail flange that was a little longer than the feet. The feet where like claws or talons floating in the air behind the creature.And the tail had a spade shaped flange at the end of it.

    It looked to be about the size of small airplane....and bigger than my Chevy S10.

Source: Phantoms & Monsters
http://www.phantomsandmonsters.com/2014/11/pterosaur-sighting-central-arkansas.html

- THE BOOM HEARD 'ROUND THE OCEAN DEPARTMENT -

Loud Boom Heard at Same Time in UK and Upstate NY

A loud boom was reported by a number of people in upstate New York on Saturday afternoon at the same time as a similar noise was heard more than 3,000 miles away in the UK.

Residents in locations including Buffalo, Cheektowaga, Clarence and as far north as Niagara Falls took to social media to report the unusual noise at around 4:45 p.m. EST.

People described it as loud enough to shake their homes and rattle windows.

'Just heard an explosion in Clarence that shook our house. Anyone else feel it? Our neighbors all felt it too,' wrote Lydia Von on the WGRZ Facebook page.

For one resident in Alden, the noise was clearly a sign of extra terrestrial life.

'I was at home when a LARGE BOOM sound accrued. My house shook. Everyone in town heard and felt it. Some surroundings towns felt it too. There is no explanation,' the unnamed person wrote on UFO Stalker.

State police received numerous calls about the loud boom, but have no idea what caused it.

Meteorologists at the National Weather Service office on the grounds of the Buffalo International Airport did not report hearing or feeling anything at their office and do not believe that there could be a weather-related explanation.

FAA personnel at the control tower did not report seeing or hearing anything either.

Residents in upstate New York described the noise as loud enough to shake their homes and rattle windows.

One possible explanation is that the loud noise and ground shaking could have been a meteorite breaking up in the atmosphere, which would result in a sonic boom.

The U.S. Geological Survey did not report any seismic activity or earthquakes in the area at the time of the shaking, although a small earthquake did take place just two hours later.

The magnitude 1.5 quake was centered about four miles west of Lockport and happened at 6:27 p.m. local time.

But Jana Pursley, a geophysicist with the USGS in Colorado, told WGRZ that it would be impossible to attribute the reported noises to the Lockport earthquake hours later.

Any earthquake that registers 2.0 or less on the Richter scale is a microearthquake and no damaged was reported as a result of the quake, according to law enforcement agencies.

At the same time as residents in New York State reported hearing noises, hundreds of Twitter users in the UK reported hearing similar sounds - that also shook their windows.

An audio recording of the 'loud bangs', taken by a woman as she sat at home in Croydon, south London, might shed light on what is really behind the unexplained noise.

Some people in Great Britain have suggested that unusual weather conditions might be the source, but the Met Office today dismissed the claims.

Others on Twitter suggested that it could be traced back to controlled explosions or military exercises. Meanwhile, conspiracy theorists took to social media to claim that aliens were to blame.

Claudia Angiletta said that she was watching TV at home when the unexplained sounds started.

She told MailOnline: 'I was just at home watching TV when I couldn't hear the program due to the loud noises. It was very distracting as it went on for ages.

'I went out to look for fireworks but I couldn't see anything in the sky. That's when I recorded the clip to send to my family to see if they could hear the same thing.'

The 27-year-old said that her family, who live roughly seven miles away in Norbury, south London, could also hear the sounds, which lasted for about 30 minutes. She then turned to Twitter to see if anyone could explain what they were.

Many suspected sonic booms similar to ones which shook Kent last month when two RAF jets intercepted a Latvian cargo plane in British airspace.

But a Ministry of Defence spokesman said she had no records of any jets being scrambled last night. The denial only served to fuel an outpouring of Saturday night speculation on social media.

Within minutes Twitter users had started spreading hashtags from the straightforward (#loudbangs) to the slightly melodramatic (#omgwereallgoingtodie).

Many of the reports were picked up by Twitter user Virtual Astronomer, who said space debris re-entering the earth's atmosphere could have been responsible.

'Space debris such as old satellites and things can cause sonic booms heard over very large areas,' he said.

'It's the same for big meteors or rocks that come in.

'There are also some rare meteorologic phenomena that can cause rumbling or bangs apart from thunder.

'The only other explanation could be supersonic aircraft. There was very little wind last night so conditions were perfect for sound to travel very long distances.'

In response, science writer David Dickinson, said on Twitter that debris from Russian satellite Kosmos 2251 could be to blame, but admitted that the timings 'weren't a good fit'.

But the Met Office said today that there had been no reports of such weather last night. A spokesman said: 'It definitely wasn't meteorological'.

Dave Reed, who lives in Fareham, Hampshire, said his dogs 'went crazy for a couple of minutes' after hearing what he had assumed were fireworks.

The noises prompted conspiracy theories and immediate claims of a 'media blackout'.

Twitter user Carrie Proctor wrote: 'This is how we'll find our that WW3 has begun. It'll be a Twitter hashtag long before any official announcement!'

Source: The Daily Mail
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2855046/Could-loud-boom-heard-upstate-
New-York-related-rumbling-noise-reported-UK-exactly-time.html

- YOU CANNOT RUN, YOU CANNOT HIDE DEPARTMENT -

Tapping Into the Supernatural to Crack Crimes

A police investigation into a burgled office safe was compounded by the lack of evidence. The company's owner had locked her staff's salaries in the safe and gone home. The next morning, a secretary opened the office to discover that it had been ransacked, the safe opened and the money missing.

Suspicion fell on an elderly employee, but he denied wrongdoing. The owner decided to consult a psychic. Under hypnosis, the elderly employee admitted that he was the thief. His confession was recorded and used by police as evidence.

The incident, as told by Moscow psychic and hypnotist Darya Mironova, is not unique. Law enforcement officials are actively working with paranormal experts to solve crimes, a little-discussed practice that goes back decades.

Law enforcement agencies, perhaps understandably, are reluctant to talk about the use of paranormal experts. But in a rare revelation, Investigative Committee chief Alexander Bastrykin said earlier this year that investigators had used hypnotists in several recent cases, including the bombing of a Moscow-St. Petersburg train.

In fact, law enforcement agencies are so keen to find people with paranormal powers that they have employed Mikhail Vinogradov, a prominent forensic psychiatrist, to watch "Bitva Ekstrasensov," or "Psychics Competition," on TNT television for possible recruits, Vinogradov said.

"If I personally like someone, I direct them … to the special services," Vinogradov said. "If a person works out, they get him involved."

He said he has recommended less than 10 contestants, and he refused to elaborate on which agencies he was assisting, citing the sensitivity of the issue.

"There are about 20 really powerful psychics in Russia, and they all wear epaulettes," Vinogradov said, referring to their membership in law enforcement agencies.

Vinogradov said the KGB first engaged him 40 years ago, when as a medical student he worked out a method to predict how people would act in emergencies based on their appearances.

To test his skills, the KGB asked Vinogradov to detect spies at diplomatic receptions in embassies a few times, and his guesses proved accurate, Vinogradov said.

Mironova said she has assisted the police for a decade and helped them draw up a psychological portrait of the so-called Bittsevsky Maniac when his name was not yet known. Serial killer Alexander Pichushkin, dubbed the Bittsevsky Maniac because he killed most of his victims in Moscow's Bittsevsky Park, was sentenced last year to life in prison for 48 murders.

The Federal Security Service and the Foreign Intelligence Service asked that questions for this article be submitted in writing.

Questions sent in July had not been answered by Friday.

The Investigative Committee rejected a written inquiry, saying it did not want to "hamper investigations."

Bastrykin, the Investigative Committee chief, said in March that hypnotists had helped investigate the August 2007 bombing of the Nevsky Express train, which injured 60 people. "Witnesses under hypnosis remembered the numbers on the license plate of the car used by the criminals," Bastrykin said, RIA-Novosti reported.

Bastrykin also said hypnotists were involved in an investigation into the March killings of two Dagestani journalists, Gadzhi Abashilov and Ilyas Shurpayev.

The head of the Investigative Committee's forensic department, Yury Lekanov, said forensic experts started involving psychics in their investigations about 20 years ago, Noviye Izvestia reported.

The first state laboratory to study paranormal activities was created under Soviet leader Josef Stalin, Vinogradov said.

The law does not prohibit involving psychics or hypnotists in investigations, but questions have been raised about the credibility of evidence obtained through their counsel.

"Prosecutors and courts should not consider testimony given under hypnosis as evidence because they cannot be sure that the idea was not planted into the person's mind," said Lev Ponomaryov, a leading human rights campaigner and former State Duma deputy.

Incidentally, the elderly employee hypnotized by Mironova in the safe robbery never went on trial. The company owner ultimately forgave him and deducted the stolen amount from his paycheck, Mironova said.

The reliability of psychics' predictions is very low, according to studies conducted by the Emergency Situations Ministry in the 1990s, Minister Sergei Shoigu said in a 2005 interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta. The ministry conducted the studies after being flooded with offers from psychics who claimed that they could predict catastrophes.

Among the psychics was Grigory Grabovoi, who in July this year was sentenced to 11 years in prison on fraud charges after promising to resurrect children killed in the Beslan school attack in 2004. The ministry said Grabovoi had examined airplanes for hidden defects during the government studies.

Western law enforcement agencies are cautious about the use of paranormal experts.

In Germany, hypnosis is only allowed when questioning witnesses, and even then restrictions apply, said Rudolf Egg, director of the Criminological Center, a state-sponsored think tank in Wiesbaden.

"I can indeed imagine that someone remembers more under hypnosis, but the question is whether this can be used later in court," he said.

In Britain, police do not actively seek the help of psychics during investigations, but all information received from a psychic who feels he is "able to assist … is given due consideration," Scotland Yard spokeswoman Kate Southern said in an e-mailed statement.

Southern said, however, that she was unaware of any investigations that progressed significantly because of information provided by a psychic.

Southern had no information on the use of hypnotists in connection with investigations.

The Interior Ministry declined to comment for this article.

A Moscow police officer said he had been consulting a psychic in missing persons investigations since 2000. The officer, who requested anonymity, saying he feared that his superiors would label him "helpless" if they knew, said the psychic helped him solve cases faster by pointing him in the right direction.

He said the psychic typically gives him a large area to search for a missing person and then he uses his experience as an investigator to determine which parts to comb.

"Sooner or later, any case is solved, even without a medium's assistance," he said. "I turn to the medium to save time."

Source: The Moscow Times
http://www.themoscowtimes.com/article/1010/42/372107.htm

- STRANGE CREATURES FROM TIME AND SPACE DEPARTMENT -

Mysterious Monsters Inhabited Utah Valley Waters     

In this day and age, a cry of "Walla-la-loo-loo" wafting across the nighttime air would not cause a normal Utah Valley resident to tremble with fear. However, during an earlier time in Utah Valley, that cry would likely have sent a chill through the breech cloth of many a Shinob-fearing Timpanogos warrior. It may have also curdled the milk of nursing Ute mothers and caused numerous sleeping Indian children to unconsciously duck their heads under their animal skin covers and clutch their buffalo hide beanie babies a little closer. For that sound was the call uttered by Pawapicts, or Water Babies, whom native Americans believed inhabited the waters of Utah Lake, Provo River and other aqua pura.

There are various Utah Indian tales relating how these water beings came into existence. According to one account published by the Uintah-Ouray Ute Tribe in the book Stories of Our Ancestors, Pawapicts came into existence as the result of a wrestling match between a very stout man named Pahahpooch and Wildcat. It is possible that this account and other similar tales were attempts on the part of the Native Americans to explain what happened to their people who had drowned.

Before challenging Wildcat to a wrestling bout, Pahahpooch had thrown all of his other contestants and had never lost a contest. When the prearranged match began, the two grappled beside a large expanse of water. The feline creature eventually threw Pahahpooch into the middle of the lake and said, "You will stay in the water all the time now and people will call you Water Indian."

Pahahpooch's life in the water must have been a very lonely one, and eventually he tempted or forced others into the water to become Water Indians like him. Then it became the task of the new Water Indians to lure other people into the water or swallow them and carry them into the depths. The lakes or streams into which they were submerged became the victims' homes.

Utes apparently believed Pawapicts came in various shapes and sizes. Most Ute accounts agree that they had long black hair and cried like infants. However, Ute sources quoted in Anne M. Smith's book, "Ute Tales," variously described them either as being the size of a man's hand or as large as a three or four-year-old child. Sometimes, they even appeared in the shape and size of an alluring full-grown woman.

These last mentioned creatures, like their human counterparts, sometimes trapped their victims by using devious methods. In one story, a young man went to the river and watered his horses. He felt overcome with fatigue and went to sleep on the bank of the stream.

When the man awoke, he became aware that someone was lying beside him. He opened his eyes and saw a seductive woman in a green dress lying next to him. He fell in love with her, and she coaxed him to go with her under the water to meet her people. His family never saw him again.

Some of the tales in Smith's book reveal personal experiences Utes had with these inhabitants of the deep, or in Utah Lake's case, the not so deep. For example, John Duncan, a Ute whose Indian name was Red Sunrise, related a story of a Water Baby that lived near Provo. Duncan said that in his youth he knew a boy who neither believed in Water Babies nor thought they were bad. He wanted proof of their existence.

Once John and his friend traveled to Utah Valley and went fishing. They saw Water Babies on a flat rock in the Provo River drying their long hair. The Pawapicts looked about the size of three-year-old children and cried like babies.

Duncan's friend, who suddenly became a believer, wanted to see the small creatures clearer, and even though the boys were afraid, they edged nearer the water. The Water Babies saw the boys, became alarmed and dove into the river. Their long hair floated on top of the water. Then the river mysteriously began to rise and come nearer to the boys. At this point, the frightened young Utes ran away. John Duncan never saw a Water Baby again; after that experience, he may not have wanted to see another one.

When the Mormon pioneers arrived in the Great Basin, the Utes told some of their beliefs to the newcomers. These Ute tales probably helped stimulate the development of similar pioneer ghost and monster stories related to water. For example, the LDS Journal History contains an early (perhaps the earliest) pioneer reference related to Water Babies.

The Southern Exploring Expedition, led by Parley P. Pratt, traveled southward through Utah Valley in November 1849. The explorers crossed over the ridge into Juab Valley on the 29th of that month and camped at Punjun Spring. This body of water is now called Burraston Ponds.

That evening the men gathered for a camp meeting. They sang hymns and two men who were ill received blessings. Toward the end of the meeting, Indian interpreter Dimick B. Huntington told the group about Ute Indian traditions, one of which was that the spring near which they camped was bottomless.

The Journal History listing for this date tells of another Ute belief that Huntington may have told the men: "The Indians have a tradition that this spring is inhabited by a hairy being, like a child eight- years-old . . . he comes up at nights, makes a noise like a frog and tries to frighten and catch Indians and draw them into this bottomless spring."

Imperfect command of the Ute language likely caused some of the Indian stories to become garbled. Also, the settlers sometimes modified stories they heard so they fit better into the Euro-American culture's realm of understanding and belief. Within a short time, the pioneers had modified this Indian tale about Burraston Ponds, and their version took on a very ghostly Euro-American flavor.

The September 15, 1851, Millennial Star contains a description of Brigham Young's spring journey to visit some of the southern colonies in Utah Territory. This article contains a reference to Punjun Spring and shows how the pioneers modified the Indian story to better fit what they could more easily understand. The settler's version of the story says Indian traditions regarded the pond "as bottomless, and in the evening they report the slight wailing of an infant is often heard to proceed from it."

Through the years, the narrative underwent still further revision. The current version of this ancient Water Baby tale has been passed down through the Richard James Burraston family to Burraston's great-granddaughter, Karen Thorn, a resident of Springville. The Daily Herald of January 27, 2001, quotes Thorn as saying, "A story is told that a baby fell into the pond and was never found. Legend says if you go to the ponds at the right time you can hear a baby cry."

Other Water Baby tales are more closely related to Utah Lake. Some early settlers of Utah Valley even changed Utah Water Indian tales so they substantiated stories found in the Bible. This was the case with William S. Robinson, who was a boy when his family settled in American Fork during pioneer times.

Robinson wrote: "When we came here, we heard that a great monster was in the lake. We asked an Indian about this big reptile and he said it was a fish, and told how four of the Indians were in swimming and heard a noise and saw this big fish following. It swallowed them and they had a knife and cut themselves out of the fish. You can connect that story with the story of Jonah, (from) which I think it is handed down."

Many of the Great Basin's new settlers came to Utah Valley from England and Denmark and were familiar with stories of dragons and kraken, or as we call them, sea monsters. Utah pioneers may not have been able to believe in little people who lived in the lake, swallowed humans and carried them into the water, but it was apparently less difficult for some of them to believe in something just as chilling and dramatic. Indian tales sown on the fertile field of pioneer imagination resulted in a bounteous harvest of monster lore.

There was, however, little public comment dealing with the presence of water monsters in Utah until August 3, 1868. On that date, a letter in the correspondence column of the Deseret News sported an eye-catching headline consisting of the following four words printed in bold capital letters: "MONSTERS IN BEAR LAKE" The letter read in part:

"All lakes, caves and dens have their legendary histories. Tradition loves to throw her magic wand over beautiful dells and lakes and people them with fairies, giants and monsters of various kinds. Bear Lake has also its monster tale to tell, and when I have told it, I will leave you to judge whether or not its merits are merely traditionary."

The correspondent, Joseph Rich, son of Charles C. Rich, went on to say the local Indians believed Bear Lake contained a monster. They claimed that many years earlier the animal carried off Indians who were swimming in the lake. Although the monster had not been seen for many years, the Indians faintly remembered what it looked like. They said the monster had legs 18 inches long and spouted water upwards from its mouth.

On a summer Sunday in 1868, three men and six women spotted a huge brownish animal between 40 and 90 feet long swimming in Bear Lake. It swam faster than a speeding locomotive, and ten others of various sizes swam in its wake.

Rich finished his imaginative article by teasing his audience with these words: "Is it fish, flesh or serpent, amphibious or amfabulous or a great big fib, or what is it? ... Here is an excellent opportunity for some company to bust Barnum on a dicker for the monster, if they can only catch one."

Did the clever, articulate correspondent from Rich County believe what he wrote? The answer lies in the following statement Rich jotted down about twenty years later when summarizing the many things he had accomplished at that point in his life. He wrote, "I discovered and made famous by publication in the Deseret News that wonderful first class lie -- The Bear Lake Monster."

What motivated Rich to write his now famous letter? To many people in Utah's capital city, life on the northern fringe of the territory near Bear Lake seemed provincial and boring, and the area received few visitors during the first years of its settlement.

Rich apparently contrived to convince the people of Salt Lake City, including the woman he hoped to marry, that life in Rich County was not as drab and humdrum as they thought it was. Rich intended to attract more visitors to the area by making the Bear Lake Country the most talked about and widely known section of Utah Territory. Could his fanciful scheme succeed?

Source: The Daily Herald
http://www.heraldextra.com/content/view/177060/4/

- GO MONKEY GO DEPARTMENT -

Another Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay?

Two people called police on Thanksgiving Day to report a monkey on the loose.

The callers said they saw it near Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo — first in a yard, and then running along Sligh Avenue. But the zoo told police it wasn't one of theirs.

"The monkey was described as being approx 3 ft tall, brown and fast," Tampa police wrote on the agency's Facebook page.

"There is no probable cause for this monkey's arrest, however, we will work tirelessly to apprehend him," police wrote. "If anyone has any information on the monkey's whereabouts or has future sightings, please call the Tampa Police Department at 813-231-6130."

An anonymous report to police had the monkey hanging around Hiawatha Street east of Armenia Avenue. Most neighbors contacted Friday by the Tampa Bay Times were skeptical about the sighting, though some conceded a monkey might have taken up residence amidst the neighborhood's lake-front homes, given the scores of fruit trees in some back yards.

"We have bananas and there are some orange trees nearby," said Anais Ochoa, 14, who lives on the 2100 block of Hiawatha.

She said she's hoping the reports are true, so she could see the monkey.

"I wouldn't approach it. I wouldn't want it to jump on me," she said.

Police have visited the neighborhood and warned Hiawatha residents not to approach the animal if they see it.

Kathy Rivitt, 45, who also lives on the 2100 block of Hiawatha, said the monkey tale raced through the neighborhood once police showed up Thursday.

While she's skeptical, she said she catches herself scanning trees in her yard and nearby, wondering whether the monkey is up there.

"I told my daughter we won't be feeding him," she said.

The most famous mystery monkey of Tampa Bay — named Cornelius — began making headlines in 2009. The male rhesus macaque had been spotted throughout the bay area, repeatedly evading efforts of wildlife experts to capture him.

Some believed he had been forced out of a colony of monkeys in Silver Springs, near Ocala.

Cornelius became somewhat of a celebrity, generating national TV chatter, a Facebook fan page and celebratory cries of "Go, monkey, go!"

His run from captivity came to an end on Oct. 24, 2012, when he was shot with a tranquilizer dart in a St. Petersburg neighborhood near Lake Maggiore, about three weeks after he had bitten a woman outside her home.

Source: Tampa Bay Times
http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/another-mystery-monkey-of-tampa-bay/2208270
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