What could these people possibly have come across? Was it some sort of cryptozoological creature, or a misidentified local species? I wish the article would have contained an actual visual description of what was seen, but the speculation that it was the devil or an escaped circus beast is still pretty entertaining.
"The Breeze, published at Hurricane, Putnam County, in a recent issue contained the following: "One night last week after a debate at Killgore's [sic] Creek School House three miles above Milton, Cabell County, a boy and a young man returned to the school house to lock the door, and on their way as they were nearing the school house, they were attacked by a ferocious wild animal. After much shooting and loud screams from the people the animal was driven away and the two boys finally escaped unharmed. The next day people from the surrounding neighborhood, well armed, and with several dogs, made a search and found the creature about a mile away, asleep on the hillside. It seemed as though the dogs had never seen anything like him before and decided to go home, departing in all directions for their several places of abode. Several shots were fired at the animal, none seeming to take effect, and the animal finally walked around the hill, into a forest and nothing more has been seen of him. Whether it was the devil or an animal escaped from some show, the people of the community do not seem to understand. ""
Even today, the area around Kilgore Creek could be considered 'rural,' and I am confident that these mountain citizens could have easily identified a bear, a wolf, or a native big cat. So what DID they see? Let me know your theories over at Theresa's Haunted History of the Tri-State Facebook page! And if you cannot get enough weirdness, please check out my Weird History Page. Stay spooky...and stay weird!
LINK to original article, courtesy of Chronicling America