From the Dreamtime the Yowie In Myth And Reality
Inlet About 1910
the course of a 1979 Yowie investigation on the NSW far South Coast,
I was told the following early settler tales by Mr. Alf Collier of Sussex
Inlet, who will figure prominently later in our search for the 'hairy
The tradition concerns
his father-in-law, Mr. Norman Alsop who, as a 10 year old child, lived
on his families property at the foot of Sassafras Mountain near Sussex
Inlet about 1910. One day he and his brother carrying a bucket and accompanied
by their two Kangaroo Dogs went to get water from a nearby creek. Suddenly
they were surprised by a large hairy beast which ran across the track
in front of them, from out of surrounding bush, frightening them. The
dogs ran off terrified, their tails between their legs.
When the boys ran
home they thought it had been their father playing a trick on them.
"Ah, we saw you Dad," they said, but the father who was a
tall man denied having left the house, and although the boys thought
he had dressed up in a kangaroo skin he firmly denied it. As their had
apparently been a number of reported sightings claims in the district
of big, hairy humanoid creatures their father thereafter never again
allowed them to go for water alone.....
Victoria ,Victoria Falls, Grose Valley 1890's-1900's
gorilla-like male creature 1910
Victoria residents at the time recalled that, during the 1800's, early
settlers believed, on the basis of sightings, that a 'family' of yowies
lived in the bush on the Victoria Falls road three miles east of the
township above the Grose Valley. It is said in about 1910, two men were
bushwalking in the Victoria Falls area when a three-metre-tall, hairy
gorilla-like male creature charged at them from out of dense scrub.
He had a large rock
in his hand which he hurled at the men, hitting one of them and killing
him instantly. His companion somehow managed to run from the monster.
The next day, a party of men with guns and dogs returned to the scene
with the survivor, but apart from some blood on the ground his companion's
body was nowhere to be found. It was assumed his body had been carried
off by the man-beast.....
Valley Forests 1910
One peaceful, sunny morning
in 1910, deep in the Allyn Valley forests, two men were engaged in sawing
a cedar log in half. [Note: The old crosscut saw
method of sawing meant a lot of time was spent in a recumbent position
on one knee, sometimes both, and the head in such a position as to restrict
the viewing area.] They suddenly got that eerie
feeling that they were not alone. Pausing a moment, they could hardly
believe what they saw.
"Strewth, when we saw
what it was we actually believed for a few moments we'd taken leave
of our senses"....., said one of the men years later when recounting
the incident. Standing behind, and only
about 1.6 m away from one of them was the weirdest creature they would
ever meet up with in a lifetime spent in the bush.
"Scarce four feet tall,
but tremendous width and thickness of body, covered with short, jet
black and very curly, coarse looking hair, arms that reached to well
below its knees; feet big enough for any three or four ordinary men,
bull neck whereon rested a head and facial features like those big apes
you see in the kids books."
"Dunno how long we gaped
at it, but it made no sound nor offered to go for us, its big black
eyes seemed to say it was just as flabbergasted as we were. When we
got our wits back we left everything and went as fast as we could for
the camp, about half a mile away."
Having arrived back at camp
and having no firearms, they stayed just long enough to eat a hurried
meal, pack food and other belongings, then left for home, fully expecting
to see or hear their uncouth looking visitor arrive any minute and perhaps
start after them, or perhaps even worse, arrive with others of its kind! What had these men seen?
Their description, if accurate, seems to suggest something closer to
an ape than the more human-like Yowie. A young Gigantopithecine perhaps?
England Ranges 1910
Around 1910, outside Tamworth
in the foothills of the New England ranges, two men hunting in mountains
behind the town found two enormous footprints imprinted in soil. Exploring further in the
direction of the footprints, they came upon "a human-like giant
about 7 ft in height". It had, they said a powerful muscular body
and arms and short light coloured hair on it's head and body. The manbeast
moved off into scrub.
"We let him walk away
without shooting him, because we feared we might be shooting a man that
had gone wild when he was a young bloke", they said later. The
men went for help in the town and later returned with other bushmen;
but apart from the large tracks, the mystery hominid was nowhere to
Today the 'hairy man' remains
a prominent feature of local [New England] folklore, and recently made
stone implements lately coming to light in the mountain country behind
Nundle certainly suggest these hominid primitives from another age are
still with us.
The interesting fact about
these recently-manufactured stone implements is that they differ little
from other, far more ancient 'dawn tools', lately beginning to turn
up around the shores of long vanished, ice-age lakes in the New England
and Central Western districts of NSW, and which resemble those once
manufactured in Asia by Homo erectus, the ancestor of modern humans.
One former bushman who took
an interest in these traditions was the late Lou Jessup of Rockhampton,
who in 1970 wrote to me with the following stories, gathered in Far
North Qld and the Northern Territory in the course of his travels. He
writes: "I am convinced that
old blackfellow's legends of a race of giant Aborigines is based upon
fact, and that some of these stone-age people survived into quite recent
"I once saw an old 'Young
Australians' annual of 1910. In a chapter on life in the Qld bush, I
read a story of an incident that took place in the Atherton district,
inland from Cairns in 1897, when a party of 'several native men of prodigious
height, and three black women of slightly smaller proportions and their
piccaninnies' were seen on the edge of a property by the owner, a Mr
Bayley and two jackaroos."
the Malaysian subregion, which comprises the foot of the Malay Peninsula,
Sumatra, Borneo and Java is a mass of Asian folklore concerning small
to giant-size hominids reminiscent of Australian Homo erectus-type races.
In Sumatra there is the 'Orang Pendek', or 'Sedapa' meaning "Little
He is described
by Sumatrans as being man-sized, very hairy, walks and runs like a human,
although it is said to have a face more ape than man in appearance.
Its legs are also shorted than a normal human's, and it has longer arms.
This description was give
of one of these creatures in 1910, by an overseer on an estate, who
was it while surveying a large tract of forest land in the Barisans
Mountains near Loobuk Salasik. He observed the creature
at a distance of 15 yards. The mystery manimal gave the man and his
workers a disagreeable look, then retreated back into the bush.
New Zealand - Coromandel
hominid Giant-2m Tall Female
Back in 1910 a hairy male
hominid giant a good 3m tall was claimed seen standing in a field by
a Coromandel farmer, Some months later a 2m tall female, ape-like creature
appeared on a creek edge at another nearby farm and was seen by the
startled property owner, his wife and children.
The amount of information
obtained from this region has encouraged Heather and I to make repeated
visits here. It is an area where Moehau encounters with Europeans date
back over 100 years.