The Legendary Thunderbird Photo

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Anonymous

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Until I came to this site, I didn't even know this picture was missing. Count me as one of the many who have seen it.

It's in a book in the public library in Oakhurst, California. I don't know which one and I live in Texas now so I have no way of finding it. But it's somewhere in the animals/general science/cryptozoology/UFOs section (it's a small library and all those things were in the shelves on the two sides of an aisle.) I lived in that section.

The picture has about 10 guys standing fairly close together and holding up a large bird with its wings spread out with a few others (5-7) standing nearby. I don't remember what the caption/text said about the picture except for something about it being from the 1800s (and it looked the right age).

This was long before the hoax TV show (it was about 14 years ago) so it wasn't that picture. But I remember thinking "Bullshit" when I saw it. I assumed it was a hoax from the 1800s and I still think that is what it was. But then I'm a sceptic not a Fortean.

But I saw that picture.
 

Sertile

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Guys, the other Civil War photo you're all talking about is here:

http://www.haxan.com/portfolio/freakyli ... UNDE~2.JPG

I don't know if the other one with the canoeadactyl was from Freakylinks or not, but this one definitely was. I remember seeing it on the site, before the show ever came out, along with the Tatzelwurm skeleton. I think this may be the one Coleman has the prop for, actually.

Sorry if this has already been posted, I didn't see it anywhere.
 

OldTimeRadio

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Big Bird. REALLY Big Bird

There's one avian which surely satisfies all the requirements of "thunderbird" or "roc" - the Argentavis Magnificens (Magnificent Argentinian Bird), a carnivorous monster the size of a small plane, with a 25-foot wingspread.

That's the kind of bird to whom you say "Yes, Sir" and "No, Ma'am."

Alas for our purposes, it went extinct at least five million years ago.
 

Mighty_Emperor

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Cryptozoologist mulls theories on ‘Big Bird’

BY KEVIN GARCIA
The Brownsville Herald

May 8, 2006 — Hidden in the shadows outside of civilization, monsters are believed by some to exist.

According to folklore, a large primate stalks the Pacific Northwest and a giant reptile lurks in the depths of a Scottish lake.

And in South Texas, people carefully watch the skies for Big Bird, a flying creature that terrorized the area in 1976.

“This bird’s got a habit of going after people,” said Guadalupe Cantu III, an eye witness. “This is strictly a nighttime bird, though. ... From 11 o’clock on, everybody’s bait.”

Cryptozoology

While most scientists would write off a man-hunting bird as pure myth, a group of researchers takes such accounts seriously. The researchers are called cryptozoologists.

“It’s considered a pseudo science,” said Ken Gerhard, 38. “I like to call it a frontier science.”

A Houston-based cryptozoologist, Gerhard is researching a book that will focus on the Big Bird. He will speak about his research before the Brownsville Enlightenment Society at 7 p.m., Tuesday at Shoney’s Restaurant. The meeting is free to the public.

While other zoologists might consider the existence of such a large unknown species impossible, Gerhard and others keep an open mind.

“Cryptozoology is the search for animals that have not yet been verified by science,” Gerhard said. “Most people are familiar with the marquee animals – Bigfoot, the Loch Ness monster and Big Bird. ... The less glamorous side would include a new species of beetle.”

In 2005 several new birds, plants and other species were discovered in the Foja Mountains of Papua, New Guinea. Scientists announced 27 new species earlier this year, discovered in California national park caves. Large creatures have also been revealed recently, with the first photographs of a live giant squid taken in 2004.

“New species are discovered all the time, a lot of people don’t understand that,” Gerhard said. “Cryptozoologists feel that those ‘real scientists’ aren’t doing a good enough job.”

Don Farst, executive director of the Gladys Porter Zoo, remembers the excitement in January 1976 when people would ask about giant birds and livestock-attacking beasts. He said nothing was ever proved, but he can understand why some believe in unknown animals.

“Nothing is impossible,” he said. “But I usually believe that either I or somebody that I trust has seen, and preferably photographed next to something of a known size.”

There’s always more to learn, according to Lynn David Livsey, president of the Brownsville Enlightenment Society, a group that discusses new discoveries and unknown phenomena on a weekly basis.

“We pretend like we know but really we don’t,” he said. “I remain open-minded on the subject.”

The Big Bird has been compared to local owl-witch legends, but Gerhard said many real creatures began as myths.

“A lot of animals discovered in the last century were original folklore animals,” he said, adding this was true of the gorilla. “They were giant hairy wild men and back in the late 1800s were considered to be folklore. ... It made the transformation from folklore into reality.”

Gerhard said certain areas of wilderness remained unexplored by men, which obviously provided the potential to discover new species of animals.

“I can’t say these animals are there, but I can say the potential is there,” Gerhard said.

Aside from the Big Bird sightings in Brownsville in 1976, there were sightings in Robstown and Rio Grande City in 1975, Swinney Switch in the 1950s and San Benito in the 1940s. McAllen, Harlingen and Los Fresnos also claimed witnesses.

Sightings

San Benito in particular seemed a hotbed for Big Bird reports. Many residents of the La Paloma Colonia have heard of the creature they call the demon bird.
“As a child I heard it one Christmas eve, really Christmas day at 1 o’clock in the morning,” said Cantu, now 50. “It made more and more noise so my grandfather went out and cussed it. ... It was a strange noise, like a couple of cats, like one voice mixed with another voice.”

As a child in San Benito, Cantu had heard of the bird, but he was surprised by its size and that it showed no fear of guns or dogs.

The bird Cantu saw seemed to stand about 8 feet tall and was solid black, although parts of its body seemed to reflect more light. It was stood vertically with stooped shoulders.

“With the face I thought I was looking at a skeleton, but it was the eyes and nose (of a skull),” he said. “It did not flap its wings, it just glided.”

Alex Resendez, 66, saw the creature three times in the 1970s. Twice he caught fleeting glimpses of the beast over Brownsville, and the third time, he saw it in broad daylight near his rural McCook area home.

“I never seen a bird that big,” he said. “He was brownish, like dirt. ... He does not have long legs and does not stand like other birds.”

What struck him most were the bird’s large eyes that shone like black glass, with red markings underneath. The beak was also peculiar.

“You have to look close because his beak is very transparent,” Resendez said. “If you see it real fast, you’re going to think he ain’t got no beak.”

In all, the brown bird seemed to stand over 4 feet tall. After being spooked by a charging bull, the bird spread its large wings and pushed off the ground with its feet.

“He was very swift, very nice, like a glider,” Resendez said. “This bird, he never flaps his wings.”

The wing underside was surprisingly colorful to Resendez, appearing with blue and white stripes.

“It was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”

Theories

Descriptions of Big Bird often follow the same pattern: it is dark in color, featherless or smoothly feathered, has a long thin beak or no beak at all, short legs and long tail.

Farst took a pragmatic approach.

“At certain times of year we have wood storks here, which are large gangly birds, about 4½ feet tall,” he said. “They are more black and white than brownish and have a long curving bill.”

He offered alternative possibilities such as a sand hill crane or brown pelican, but said the distinctive features described by witnesses don’t always match with known animals.

As several cattle mutilations were reported in 1976, Resendez believes they might be related to the Big Bird sightings.

“I thought maybe this bird goes after these cows, drives his beak in there, takes samples, then goes upstairs where maybe there is a UFO,” he said. “It’s so well made, nobody could tell it was a robot, but I don’t know.”

Gerhard has heard theories ranging from a giant owl to a giant bat, but he has his own ideas.

“The other theory that I’m pursuing with my book is probably a little more out there,” the cryptozoologist said. “That’s the possibility of living pterosaurs.”

Winged reptiles and contemporaries of the dinosaurs, pterosaurs are believed to have met extinction more than 64 million years ago, but some cryptozoologists see the creatures as possible Big Bird explanations.

“It seems to jibe with most of the reports I’ve collected,” Gerhard said, adding that the Kongamato of Africa and Ropen of Papua, New Guinea, both supposedly mythical creatures, are said to have reptile-like features.

Farst doubts a large flying reptile could go undiscovered, but said there are some birds that behave similarly to the Big Bird.

“The best and biggest flying birds that we have would be like the Andean Condor from South America,” he said. “They can jump and launch themselves into the air to take off, but usually they do this off the side of a cliff.”

Gliding without a cliff, or preliminary flapping, would be highly unusual, he said.

“That would indicate that it would be something that we don’t have in this world at this time,” he said. “If I had to bet any of my hard earned money, I would be willing to bet odds of a 1,000-to-1 against there being a critter like this. .... I wish you’d prove me wrong. I’d love to see something like this.”

Livsey believes Big Bird to be an actual bird, albeit one not known to modern man. The extinct Teratorn is believed to have wingspans over a dozen feet.

“This does have to be a monster or a giant flying reptile,” he said. “I believe we’re talking something terrestrial here. I do believe in UFOs, and I was a witness to a UFO event, but I do not believe this was some kind of extra-terrestrial.”

-----
Posted on May 08, 06 | 12:00 am

www.brownsvilleherald.com/ts_more.php?id=70671_0_10_0_C
 

WhistlingJack

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Reading Emp's post, I was reminded of the 1977 case in Lawndale, Illinois, where Marlon Lowe was allegedly attacked by one of two 'thunderbirds':

cryptozoology.com/articles/marlon
Link is either a dead end (into a registration-required site) or the content is MIA.

As of the time of this post, the webpage was titled:

THE 1977 LAWNDALE, ILLINOIS THUNDERBIRD CASE
As told by the eyewitnesses by Jerry D. Coleman

The 2006 version of the webpage is accessible at the Wayback Machine:

https://web.archive.org/web/20060618044914/http://www.cryptozoology.com/articles/marlon.php


... the article doesn't carry any photographs of the incident (I'm sure I've read somewhere that at least one did exist), but it has what is claimed to be a film still of a thunderbird - any thoughts as to its validity?

Here is the MIA photo image from the MIA webpage. The caption indicates it's a still from an amateur movie filmed by A. J. Huffer the day following the Lawndale episode.

huffer2-1.gif
 
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ProfessorF

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Whilst I'm no ornithologist, that looks like an eagle or an Osprey I'd guess - hardly what the majority of reports suggest. :?
 

PeniG

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The movie still is useless, with no scale and only the silhouette, not a single field mark. You can see it's a raptor, and maybe a really good birder could say a bit more, but I don't think Peterson himself could give you a species with confidence.

The drawing and the description in the blue block don't match. Let us take the blue block as the more accurate depiction.

Looking in the National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America (not my favorite guide, but the only one I own that covers the continent as opposed to smaller geographical regions), the only large bird of prey that can remotely be described as having a "white ring around its neck" is the Crested Caracara or Mexican Eagle, L 23" (58 cm) W 50" (127 cm). (For those of you not into old fashioned measurements, the bird described would be between 48" and 60" long.)

The description is peculiar in that the neck ("half a foot long") and the beak ("six inches") are estimated at the same length. The bird that matches this detail best is the cormorant, with a hooked beak approximately as long as its snaky neck - and the double-crested cormorant is indeed to be found in the Mississippi Valley in the summer - and the juveniles may have a white throat (but not a white ring), but it does not have grasping feet and is only 32"L (81cm). The cormorant is one of those birds that makes you wonder why it took so long to figure out where the dinosaurs went, though!

The description of the feet is useless since most birds have three in front, one in back (the big exception being certain woodpeckers).

The biggest bird in North America, the California condor, is 47" (119 cm) L, 108" (274 cm) W, does not have efficient grasping feet, does not have a white ring, and in any case wouldn't have been found in Illinois even when it was free in the wild, there being no mountains there to provide decent habitat. This did not prevent the artist from using it as a model for the picture, however!

Golden and bald eagles do live in Illinois. They do not have white rings and are, though not as big as the bird described, plenty big when seen close to (Golden, L 30"-40" (76-102 cm), W 80-88" (203-224 cm); Bald L 31"-41" (84-104 cm), W 70"-90" (178-229 cm)). It would be very, very easy to exagerrate the size of an eagle that was grappling you or your loved one.

Many wading birds, such as whooping cranes and great blue herons, can also appear bigger than they are; however, in July, cranes are in Canada and neither it, nor the GBH, has grasping feet, dead black feathers, or a hooked beak. Other birds that appear freakishly big when seen close to include storks (white), ibises (beak curved, not hooked), and pelicans (brown ones are coastal only). There's also some mucking big owls, which have wonderful grasping feet, but no necks to speak of. I think it's safe to say that the world's stupidest witness couldn't have seen an owl and produced that description.

Black and turkey vultures are similar in size to eagles, with bigass wings (L 25-27" or 64-69 cm, W 57-69" or 145-170 cm). They have no interest in live prey. Turkey vultures should be familiar to anyone who ever looks up in North America; black vultures are less common in the north and fly differently - glide flap flap flap, glide flap flap flap instead of the effortless endless glide of the TV. No details about the flight, alas.

If this is a physical bird, the only reasonable candidates among the known species are IMHO the golden and bald eagles, probably juveniles as juveniles often have funky feather coloration and are not noticeably smaller than adults. An experienced bird of prey wouldn't be likely to grab prey as unsuitable as a child, but we all know what teenagers are like! And it would be very easy to exagerrate their size.

The 35-foot drag raises the question - did the bird drag the child, or did the child drag the bird? If a four-foot-long bird stuck its talons into me, I'd run for Mama! The bird might have quickly realized its mistake and been unable to let go!

The "large ground nest" destroyed at the creek is irrelevant in itself, as birds are done nesting by July. The fact that it is treated as relevant may fairly be used to question the natural history cred of the people who brought it up. The size of the shadow ("blanketing the pickup truck") is also not relevant, as at 8:09 P.M. in July the sun is low and creating long shadows. Nor - alas - do I have any confidence in height estimates made in a featureless landscape like Illinois.

I have no reason to think these witnesses are not honest, and I don't know what happened. If it's a thunderbird, it's a pretty small one.
 

Mister_Awesome

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That certainly is an interesting picture... It would be interesting to know where it's from. I don't think I've heard reference to that particular one before. I don't think that's a vulture, though. The wings are solid, instead of feathered. They don't appear to be bat-like either. I can't quite make out the head. Very strange. You can fake a picture of anything in this day and age, so finding out where it first appeared is important.
 

GNC

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It's similar, but I don't think anyone would be fooled by that. There are supposed to be more people in the picture as well.
 

MercuryCrest

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Yeah, I know the other pic that people have been referring to, but I hoped that this one might spark some memories.

The pic that I posted above comes from the North American BioFortean Review Issue #9, for anyone who's interested in reading the article verbatim (only a small blurb for that particular pic but more on giant birds in general).

The gist is that the pic was scanned from an unknown magazine and emailed to the author of the article referenced above.

I see what you mean by the wings being "solid", makes me think of a dyed, stiffened canvas, but the beak and head look like a large vulture to me (having only seen them in the wild, not having studied pictures of them or anything).

Anyways, I think this one is pretty clearly a hoax; that is unless it's a legitimately recognized species of large bird, then I'll have egg on my face. :lol:
 

Sthenno

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It’s a duck with a pair of cardboard wings! I want one!
 

WhistlingJack

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Big-Bird Encounter One For the Books

Big-bird encounter one for the books

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (July 19, 2007) - Myths and legends about creatures from the Chupacabra to the Jersey Devil to Bigfoot are everywhere, but in southern New Mexico and parts of Texas people say they've seen birds so big they seem prehistoric.


One man claims the rugged landscape near Las Cruces hides a mystery that's haunted him for years.

Dave Zander has lived near the Doña Ana Mountains for more than 30 years spending almost all his spare time hiking, exploring and fossil hunting in the range between the Robledo and Organ mountains.

He saw something that he's unable to explain and many people find hard to believe.

He recalls the day nine years ago when he spotted something extraordinary: two creatures perched on a mountain less than a mile away.

"These creatures were so huge they looked like the size of small planes," Dave Zander said. "All of the sudden one of them jumped off dropped off the top of the mountain, came down the front of the mountain and all the sudden these huge wings just spread out.

"I would say the wings were at least a 20-foot wingspan."

Definitely something out of the ordinary.

"Not a normal bird, definitely of a giant variety," Zander continued. ""It makes you feel like it could come over and carry you off if it wanted to."

Zander witness a real-life scene out of the movie Jurassic Park?

One ancient bird in the vicinity is an Andean condor living at the Rio Grande Zoo in Albuquerque. But it's wingspan of 12 feet pales to what Zander described: birds with an unprecedented twenty-foot wingspan, with pink bald heads and all-black bodies, and feathers on their enormous wings.

There is nothing on modern record like it.

"In comparison a 20 foot wingspan would truly be a monster and something undocumented by science," cryptozoologist Ken Gerhard said. "I believe what Dave Zander may have seen are surviving teratorns."

Gerhard has made a career studying prehistoric birds.

"What's interesting the reports of these giant raptor-like birds to continue into modern times," he said. "We seem to have a large concentration of them here in the Southwest particularly in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas as well as New Mexico and parts of Arizona."

Gerhard documented many of these strange reports from all over the globe in the book Big birds! Modern sightings of flying monsters.

The book includes sightings in different clusters over the past 30 years.

In 1972 in Maxwell in northeastern New Mexico, Ronald Monteleone of Trinidad, Colo., reported what he thought was a pterodactyl flying out of an arroyo.

In Lordsburg in the 1800s locals talked constantly about the sightings of pterosaurs.

And a picture circulated the country in 1890 out of Tombstone, Ariz., but it's never been considered totally legitimate.

"Other eyewitnesses are describing specifically giant feathered dark birds with an enormous wing span," Gerhard said.

Gerhard said his research falls into two different descriptions from witnesses. Some said the birds look like the prehistoric pterodactyl while others, like the creatures described by Zander, resemble the ancient thunderbird from Native American mythology.

You can find thunderbird images atop many totem poles and also carved into the lava rocks of the Petroglyph National Monument in Albuquerque. Similar images are found in petroglyphs all over North America.

According to legend, the thunderbird is said to have a wingspan the length of two canoes with the ability to deafen people with the sound of its flapping wings.

"It is definitely a real animal, according to the native peoples that lived here," Gerhard said. "It's not necessarily a legendary animal."

However a word of caution comes from folks like Ben Radford, managing editor of the Skeptical Inquirer magazine, which applies scientific reason and evidence to extraordinary claims.

"There is a desire to link modern sightings with these Native American stories but the problem is they're not necessarily the same thing," Radford said.

Radford said believes the eyewitnesses saw something:

"Ultimately a lot of these sightings, whether it's these monsters, these creatures, Chupacabras, what have you, these come down to eyewitness testimony," Radford said. "They're stories, there's nothing wrong with stories, but they're just not good evidence."

Radford has debunked numerous stories about the Loch Ness monster, crop circles and Bigfoot.

He said he relies on evidence.

"You don't have bones, teeth," he continued. "You don't have any hard evidence, so you look to these stories, you look to these myths.

"We know from many scientific experiments people are notoriously unreliable about estimating things."

And in this case, Radford said he thinks Zander and the other witnesses in Texas overestimated the birds' size.

What makes the reports intriguing is that most experts agree scientists have yet to discover every species on the planet and really have no idea what is out there:

"I believe there's a good chance that a number of large prehistoric animals remain undiscovered by modern science." Gerhard said.

Radford readily concedes there are species yet to be discovered, but...

"Do I think there are giant animals and birds and creatures out there?" he said. "No."

For his part, Zander continues to keep his eyes on the skies but hasn't had a repeat visit from the creatures. The one experience has stayed with him.

"I feel honored to have seen the one sighting," he said. "I had if they're still up there still living up there and thriving, I say awesome, more power to them."

Today's KRQE.com Web question asked, "Do you think there are prehistoric species still roaming the earth?" Sixty-four percent of respondents said yes; 36 percent said no.

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2007 WorldNow and KRQE. All Rights Reserved.
 

WhistlingJack

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Sightings of Mysterious Giant Bird Continue In San Antonio

Another report: -

Sightings of mysterious giant bird continue in San Antonio*

Web Posted: 07/28/2007 01:30 AM CDT

Joe Conger

KENS 5 Eyewitness News


Loch Ness has its monster. Does San Antonio have one, too?

Strange sightings of a huge flying creature have been reported as recently as six months ago. Is it a monster or myth?

Guadalupe Cantu III was busy working his newspaper route, but he says the big news of that day 10 years ago flew right over his car. He says he's seen what most have not — an unidentified flying object, one that still scares him.

"We were afraid that it would come at us. So we stayed in the car till it passed this way," witness Guadalupe Cantu III said. "This thing's all feathers, all black. Much bigger than me. It looked at us. It had very stooped-up shoulders." The beast has been spotted from the Rio Grande Valley to the mountains of New Mexico.

"(It) looked like what was possibly two people standing on top of a mountain up there," said David Zander, who saw the monster in New Mexico. "Something that big ... I guess it kinda makes you feel like it could come over and carry you off if it wanted to."

San Antonio's Ken Gerhard has written a book on these dark birds as big as planes, with wingspans from 15 to 20 feet.

Native Americans called them thunderbirds: depicted in their art, their flapping wings were said to cause explosive noises.

"What's interesting is that the reports of these giant, raptor-like birds do continue into modern times," said Gerhard, a cryptozoologist. Cryptozoology is the study of and search for legendary animals to prove their existence.

He says there's solid evidence something is overhead.

"I believe there's a good chance that a lot of large, prehistoric animals, if you will, remain undiscovered by modern science," he said.

So what could the giant birds be? Some witness sketches eerily resemble prehistoric creatures, like the pteronadon of 160 million years ago.

However, Gerhard theorizes it could be a creature that's a little less extinct — if that's possible — a pteratorn.

"These are the surviving ancestors of modern condors and vultures. They lived up until 6,000 years ago, we know for sure, in parts of North America," Gerhard said. "In fact, over 100 specimens have been recovered from the La Brea tar pits in California."

But critics have another take: human error.

"Was it really as big as he thought it was?" asks Ben Radford, editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine. "When there's enough information to come to a determination, I've always found an explanation for it."

Radford says the eye can be deceived.

"Eyewitness testimony is very unreliable. And so it's hard for a person to tell — even experts to tell — 'Is that thing I'm seeing out there, is it small and nearby? Or is it huge and farther away?' " Radford said.

But in one sighting in San Antonio, three people gave similar accounts, witnessing the same fly-by of a huge, winged creature. A trio of South Side teachers traveling a deserted road had their cars "buzzed" by the monsters, and it made the papers in February 1976.

In fact, for decades papers throughout South Texas have chronicled the flying creatures. In the age of the Internet, the reports continue, like this one from a recent sighting near Huebner and Babcock roads.

"The creature was large, at least 6 feet," the report reads. "I don't know if I ever want to see another one."

"If I were outside there walking, it would've gone after me," witness Cantu said.

Cantu believes most sightings go unreported because people are afraid of the ridicule they could face.

However, he says a face-to-face encounter with the creature would be much worse.

"I think if you do see it, then you might wind up missing," Cantu said.

© 2007 KENS 5 and the San Antonio Express-News. All rights reserved.

*Video on site
 

agentbuffy

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I'm Not Saying I've Unearthed The Thunderbird Photo ...

... but I stumbled across this vid (
) on YouTube, and there are a couple of things that might shed a little light on this oh so elusive shot. There's also a lot of crap, but let each image stand for itself.

I think most people on this board will know which photo I'm referring to - huge numbers of people have a memory of seeing the photo of a bunch of people stood in front of a barn in what seems to be mid-west USA, up on which is pinned the corpse of the enormous Thunderbird of Native American myth. Now, despite many many people having a memory of seeing this photo, I don't think I've ever heard of anyone being able to lay hands on it, and as a result, I think it's fair to say that most people would now class the Thunderbird photo as a myth, along with the Thunderbird itself.

However, to return to the video, just check out the photos at 4.26 and especially 0.24 - is it possible that people have seen these photos, and then superimposed them on to the legend of the Thunderbird? And then, once someone has described the photo along similar, very vague lines as I have done, that the memory of one of the above shots becomes morphed in the mind as a memory of seeing the Thunderbird photo itself?

I think it's a very real possibility - any thoughts? (sorry if this is bit long-winded ;) )
 
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Pete Younger

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No they are nothing like the picture I remember, several cowboy types pictured in front of the bird which is nailed to the barn.
 

agentbuffy

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Well, that's kind of the point - these pictures aren't the same as the Thunderbird picture that people remember seeing - but as no-one can come up with a copy of the picture, or even in many (if not all) cases a verifiable source for where they saw the picture then there is a strong possibility that it doesn't exist.

However, with the ubiquity of descriptions of the Thunderbird picture, and the fact that both of these images have strong echoes of it (the first photo - enormous bird spreadeagled out upright behind a posing subject; second photo - bird corpse on display in front of clapboard (possible) barn, with man in mid-western period "cowboy style attire" (or what, as a Brit, I assume this to be) in attendance) suggest to me that there might be a bit of false memory / planted memory / ostention at work.

I know that neither of these photos is the Thunderbird photo - I'm just suggesting that these photos (or ones similar), and the well known description may be the root of where the elusive "real" Thunderbird photo came from.
 

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4422449312_42727299f4_o.jpg
Argentavis Magnificans from my Flickr acct. Found on cracked.com
 

agentbuffy

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Well, this ( http://grizzledoldtraveler.blogspot.com ... emory.html) is hardly a new idea, but it's one I feel (with a great deal of regret) is probably true.

I really wish the photo still existed (if it even ever existed at all) but I don't think it does - and even if it turned up now it would probaly be either ridiculously disappointing, or be exposed as a fake :(
 

Moooksta

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Were you looking for a Thunderbird photo?

There was a thread on here, someone was looking for a BW photo of a "Thunderbird", I've had a good search (ducks...as Rynner's hand swishes inches above his scalp), a really good search using "Thunderbird" and "Civil War Soldiers" in various forums and had no luck.

Did they find the photo? I ask as I've just come across one in a new book, Thunderbird and a bunch of Civil War soldiers standing over it. Was that the photo?

And if the thread is re-discovered can a mod merge this?
 

Bigfoot73

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Did they find the photo? I ask as I've just come across one in a new book, Thunderbird and a bunch of Civil War soldiers standing over it. Was that the photo?

I think the photo you were searching for is the one with a thunderbird nailed to a barn door :- this is the one everybody says they remember seeing somewhere but can't recall where. probably because it's the longest running case of false memory syndrome in current Forteanism - it never existed.
As for the Civil War soldiers photo, there's another one doing the rounds on the web, and I think both are fakes. Apart from the fact that all the soldiers in both photos look rather well fed, clean shaven and haven't got any bits missing, t-birds are usually reported from states such as Michigan and Pennsylvania, where there was little or no fighting apart from the brief 1863 campaign that culminated in the Gettysburg battle.
Yes,Whistling Jack's story is from Texas, but then it wasn't a full state and took no part in the Civil War.
Besides which, wouldn't a thunderbird have yielded a lot of trophies and a good dinner for an entire company ? Did nobody have any remnants or recollections? There is a trickle of sightings from the northern states, perhaps someone will get a photo one day.
 

gordonrutter

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The Hunt for the Thunderbird picture has been going on since the seventies!

There are recreations of the alleged photo for example Loren Coleman has one at his museum and this was made for a re-enactment tv show and he subsequently bought the bird in question.

Which book is it? Is it the Mark A Hall one?

If THE Thunderbird picture was rediscovered there would be a big hoo ha about it!

Gordon
 

PeniG

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[rant]Texas took plenty of part in the Civil War! CF the Battle of Sabine Pass, the Red River Campaign, Col. Tom Green, Hood's Texas Brigade, the Battle of Galveston, the Yankee occupation of Brownsville, the all-important cotton trade, etc. etc. etc. You don't have to be completely overrun and devastated by the enemy to take part in a war. It's true that the entire Trans-Mississippi was treated like a red-headed stepchild by the gummit, which acted as if a) only military operations mattered (if that had been true the Confederacy would have won; it was economic stupidity that doomed them from Day 1) and b) the citizens of the western states should be happy to bleed themselves dry of all men and resources and let the Comanches kill all the civilians in support of the culturally superior eastern states, so I can see where you got that impression; but it's not true.[/rant]

Excuse me; I spent most of last year researching the Texas home front for a story and I've got a lot invested in it.

Anyway, the "Civil War" Thunderbird photo with which I am most familiar is an acknowledged fake by the folks who brought us The Blair Witch Project, and is very much in line with their whole artistic approach to producing fictional Forteana. Others have been produced, as have photos of Civil War dinosaur hunters; it's a fairly easy hoax to pull, given the ease with which reasonable facsimiles of Civil War uniforms, faux "old-timey cameras," and so on can be obtained. You don't even need Photoshop.

http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/c-w-dinos/
 

Bigfoot73

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so I can see where you got that impression; but it's not true.[/rant]

Fair enough , history written by the winners viewed from 5000 miles away.
 

PeniG

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Actually a surprising amount of what people think of as American Civil War history was written by the losers, but that's got nothing much to do with Thunderbirds and could encompass volumes.
 

Moooksta

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Alas it was the Civil War weekend soldiers and their stuffed bird, the book clearly reveals it as a fake for a turn of the century TV show.


As for the other photo...certainly rings bells with me. Big bird nailed to a barn. I thought it was above the open front doors and for some reason I see the barn as being red wood with gaps between the planks...go figure...
 
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