Another ‘sea serpent’ sensation – Sheffield Independent 2 July 1867:
We know that it has been customary for the manufacturers of the marvellous to revive at intervals the story of the “sea serpent,” which has gone the rounds of the papers “many a time and oft,” and been laughed at by the public as it should have been.
In the fact of this fact, we do not hesitate to present the following statement, which we believe to be true in every particular, for the reason that we have it upon the testimony of eight persons, six of whom saw, each for him and herself, all that is contained in the statement, and two others who, for reasons given, saw only a portion thereof. If we were permitted to give the names of those who make the statement, no one at all acquainted in Oswego would doubt it for a moment.
The following is the statement:-
Last evening, about eight o’clock, a party of four ladies and four gentlemen of this city went out upon Lake Ontario for a ride in a four-oared row-boat. They went up the lake about two miles. It was still daylight when the party started. The evening was pleasant, with almost no wind, and the moon, though not shining very brightly, made objects plainly discernible on the lake. There were a number of sail vessels in sights, and also a few row-boats. On the return of the party, when opposite the hill upon which the Sheldon residence stands, some 300 feed from the shore, and about ten o’clock, the occupants of the boat, who were singing at the time, heard a peculiar noise which attracted their attentions.
About 200 feet ahead of them, and within 100 feet of the shore, they saw what they at first thought to be a log floating in the water. The peculiar noise was repeated, and this time it was apparent that it came from the vicinity of the “log”. The steersman headed the boat towards the “log”, as he said the purpose of rescuing the castaway “bullfrog”.
Immediately that the boat’s head was turned the party saw a most horrible sight. The form of a huge snake was raised fully fifteen feet into the air, and brought down into the water three or four times in quick succession.
A noise similar in nature to that heard previously, but greatly increased in power, was head; the reptile settled into the water, and with its horrid head elevated about two feet about the surface began to move off towards the centre of the lake, repeating the noise, which sounded like the bellow of a bull, and lashing the water into foam for a distance of at least forty feet behind the head.
When the monster raised its head first, the two ladies who sat facing the scene screamed and fainted. The other two, though terribly frightened, kept their eyes fixed upon the monster until it disappeared.
The men seemed paralysed by the sight, and state that they were unable to make a stroke of the oars. They were not near enough to see the shape of the head, but unite in saying that the body of the animal was at least two feet thick at the neck, and gradually increased in size down to the water. They belly seemed of a light colour, and the back black. – Oswego Palladium, June 11.