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Geographical Index > United States > Idaho > Blaine County > Article # 15

Media Article # 15

Wednesday, November 1, 1882

Two Vicarious Cow Boys See and Chase the Solitary Savage of Snake River

By Hailey Times
(Ft. Benton) River Press,Nov 1 1882

Two cow boys who just came in from Camas Prairie related an experience which will probably go a great way toward re-establishing the popular faith in the wildman's tradition. On the first day of this month, two cow boys searching for cattle lost in a storm, passed over some lava craigs, and were startled by suddenly seeing before them the form so often described to them. They were so terrified that they sat up on their horses looking at it in dread. Mustering courage and drawing their revolvers, they dismounted and gave chase, but the strange being skipped from craig to craig as nimbley as a mountain goat. After an hour's pursuit both young men were so utterly worn out that they both laid down-seeing which the wild man gradually approached them and stopped on the opposite side of the gorge in the lava, from which point he regarded the cow boys intently. The latter would not shoot, as they considered it would be unjustifiable, though they kept their pistols ready for use, while carefully returning the compliment thoroughly inspecting the phantom of Snake River. The wild man was considerably over six feet in height, with great muscular arms which reached to his knees. The muscles stood out in great knots and his chest was broad as that of a bear. Skins were twisted about his feet and ankles, and a wolfs skin about his waist. All parts of his body to be seen were covered by long black hair, while from his head the hair flowed over his shoulders in course, tangled rolls, and mixed with a heavy beard. His face was dark and swarthy, and his eyes shown brightly, while two tusks protruded from his mouth. His fingers were in the shape of claws, with long, sharp nails, and he acted very much as a wild animal which is unaccustomed to seeing a man. The boys made all kinds of noises at the sound of which he twisted his head from side to side and moaned-appearantly he could not give them any "back talk", so, wearying of eyeing him, the two boys fired their revolvers, whereupon the wildman turned a double somersault, and jumped fifteen feet to a low bench and dissapeared, growling terribly as he went. It is supposed that this is the same apparition that has so often been seen before. The man, no doubt, does as the indians did for subalstance, and lives on camas root, which grows wild in the area, and he no doubt kills young stock as many yearlings and calves dissapear mysteriously, and nothing but skeletons are ever found. The boys at the stock camp are arranging to go out on a scout again to overtake him, being provided with lariats they will lasso him and bring him to Hailey to deliver him up to the county authorities.

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