New England Myths & Legends: The Dover Demon
The Dover Demon of Dover, Massachusetts is an interesting addition to our series of ghouls, ghosts, monsters and unexplained phenomenon. While the majority of our stories come from colonial times and the days before modern media, the Dover Demon reared its giant, watermelon-shaped head in the late 1970’s.
Without the benefit of scientific and medical knowledge, it’s easy to understand why early New Englanders attributed their misfortunes to witches and vampires, but a bright orange, humanoid creature spotted by two unacquainted teens on the same night in 1977? That’s a bit harder to explain away!
On the evening of April 21, 1977, 17-year-old Bill Bartlett and two teenage friends were driving north on Farm Street in Bartlett’s Volkswagen. Something appeared in the headlights that Bartlett at first mistook for a dog or cat until it came into focus.
He reported a creature with peach-colored skin with a rough texture like “wet sandpaper” or the skin of a shark. It had no discernible facial features except for huge, round eyes “like two orange marbles.” The description is similar to the “greys” described by many a UFO fanatic, except of course for the pale orange color.
The 4-foot-tall, naked humanoid creature with thin, with spindly limbs and an oversized, elongated head. It was able to stand upright or walk on all fours like an animal. Unfortunately, Bartlett’s two friends claimed not to have seen the creature as the car sped past that night.
Around midnight that same evening, 15-year-old John Baxter was walking up Miller High Road when he observed a strange figure approaching him. He at first mistook it for a friend who lived on that street, but got no response to his calls. When Baxter attempted to approach it, the creature ran down a shallow wooded gully and up the opposite bank.
After pursuing it briefly, Baxter spotted a monkey-like creature standing in silhouette about 30 feet away, its feet “molded” around the top of a rock. After a brief stare-down into its large, inhuman eyes, Baxter broke away, never to see the strange being again.
Alien enthusiasts believe the boys each encountered an intelligent creature from another planet, while skeptics maintain that what they saw that night was just a baby moose or orange-colored calf out of place in the moonlight. The Dover Demon has never been spotted again.
All Images via Cryptids Wikia