Like it? Share it!

Sign up for news and updates!






Enter word seen below
Visually impaired? Click here to have an audio challenge played.  You will then need to enter the code that is spelled out.
Change image

CAPTCHA image
Please leave this field empty

Login Form



A Sea Monster is Born PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by Barbara Mervine   

118The Lake Franklin Pierce alligator is a myth in the making.  Today, just a joke but tomorrow and for generations to come, a lake monster!  How does a lake monster myth start?  In this case, most of us that live on Lake Franklin Pierce in Antrim New Hampshire found out about our alligator when we read the headline in the local free newspaper,  "The Villager". The June 11,2009 edition got our attention with the headline, "Possible Alligator Spied in Pierce Lake".

The article went on to tell the tale of Ray and Richard Grimard.  They were fishing from the deck of the local hydro electric plant when they spotted an alligator.  Despite the doubts of Dave Walsh a Fish and Game Conservation Officer, the rumor of an alligator in "our" lake spread like wildfire in the lake community.  I can see the hydro plant from the dock of my lake cabin.  I often see Ray and Richard and others fishing from the deck of the plant.  It should be noted the "plant" is a small white building that appears to have seen better days.  It's about the size of a trailer home.  I usually kayak by and often wave at the guys fishing.

In the days after the article came out people were joking, "any sign of that gator?" was a common joke.  Fishermen were told to use "chicken" for bait and to go out and get a bigger rod.  Children were teased with "look out for that gator!" when swimming.  More than one sibling got revenge on another sibling by  swimming underwater,  pinching, and then laughing at the result.  Still ominous signs were seen when some mothers decided it would be a good idea to tell their smaller children not to go near the lake without an adult because "the gator will get you".  As one mom said "well it's works better than just nagging.  They are scared of an alligator!"  Historically, many "monsters" served to keep children from wandering where they shouldn't.  Swamps, wells and the woods are populated by monsters waiting so snatch small children   Now Franklin Pierce Lake has a "monster" just waiting to snap up any unattended children.

As summer has gone on, the alligator rumor hasn't died down.  I heard someone fishing on the hydro plant deck speaking loudly to a person in a kayak about "that's just where I saw the alligator!"  People have reported loud splashes and odd movements in the water (my guess is an otter).  Once we know that we can possibly see an alligator, our eyes eagerly search for one.

Time will tell if the Franklin Pierce alligator makes it through the winter.  An alligator is just too much fun to give up easily.  But as time goes on, what will the Franklin Pierce alligator become?  Just a story, or will it morph into a mythical being seen only rarely and photographed through only a fuzzy lens?  Lake Champlain has "Champy".  Franklin Pierce lake seems ready for "Frankie" a monster of our own.

Trackback(0)
Comments (12)Add Comment
As much as I hate lying to kids.
written by Noadi, September 02, 2009
I do have to give credit to the moms for co-opting the "alligator" to keep small children away from the water, little kids can drown very easily and quickly. My parents terrified me with stories of snapping turtles biting swimmers toes off.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +3
...
written by MadScientist, September 02, 2009
Perhaps you should start a website - something in the spirit of the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus (http://zapatopi.net/treeoctopus/).

It's hard to believe that people fall for it, but you get all sorts. I wouldn't mind meeting the creator of the octopus story.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
...
written by dolandilae, September 03, 2009
If Hollywood has taught me anything, its that you don't fish for alligators with chicken and a fishing rod.. you use whole live cattle, a helicopter, and a tranq gun.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +7
This is smalltime
written by Quakeulf, September 03, 2009
The Manhattan airport Foundation (http://manhattanairport.org/) is going on strong. >:3
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by GeekGoddess, September 03, 2009
I can't wait to see next year's explanation of how an alligator survives the New Hampshire winter and frozen lake.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
Loch Ness
written by StarTrekLivz, September 03, 2009
dear GeekGoddess, I'm still waiting for the explanation on how the Loch Ness Monster survived the last ice age (when the Loch was under an ice sheet estimated to be as much as 1 mile high ....)
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +6
...
written by LovleAnjel, September 03, 2009
So this explains the snapping turtle in our creek who could cut a broom handle in half, but was never actually seen by anyone...
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
...
written by LovleAnjel, September 03, 2009
@Trek

Don't you know? All of the Northern hemisphere lakes were connected to the oceans by a series of underground tunnels, so Champ & Nessie just had to swim a bit to get to open water.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +3
How do you start a lake monster myth?
written by Griz, September 03, 2009
These days, with a marketing department.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
@LovieAnjel
written by StarTrekLivz, September 03, 2009
I've heard that -- and some believe that the Loch is connected to the Ocean by tunnels which geologists somehow fail to find. smilies/cheesy.gif The problem with that explanation: the Loch is some 700 feet above Sea Level. Water finds it's own level. If there were a tunnel, the Loch would drain like an upstairs bathtub when you pull the plug.


Live Long and Prosper!
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +4
...
written by Willy K, September 03, 2009
About two thousand years ago there was this guy who allegedly walked on some body of water.

Parents and faith-heads are still using this myth to frighten children. smilies/wink.gif

report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +17
...
written by EbOesch, September 05, 2009
@startreklives -- nitpick -- the surface elevation of Loch Ness is about 50 feet about sea level, not 750 feet, according to Wikipedia.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0

Write comment
This content has been locked. You can no longer post any comment.
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.

busy