The Ohio "Grassman"?
Jay, Ohio Bigfoot Group Founder
I first heard the term "Ohio Grassman" several years ago while watching "Monsterquest" when it was on History Channel what seems like forever ago. I had never heard the term before so I did a search shortly thereafter and found a book titled "Bigfoot Encounters in Ohio; Quest for the Grassman" By Christopher L. Murphy with Joedy Cook and George Clappison. I picked up a copy of this book, but the book itself does not have much to do with what I am writing about while having everything to do with what I am writing about. If that makes sense.
I was curious about the term "Grassman" and where it came from. The book claims and I am quoting "Use of the term 'Grassman' to identify an unusual ape-man creature appears to go back to at least the turn of the last century. Apparently, sightings of the creature in tall grass (including the young of the species) on Ohio's plains resulted in the name." The book does not give any detail as to who was calling the creature by this name or any sources for reference. The reader is led to assume that it was early settlers in Ohio by the timeframe given. My short-lived further searches yielded no results but I left it as is, feeling at least partially satisfied. (I should clarify, I am in no way bashing this book, it is actually one of my favorite reads, but for all intents and purposes this legend is not taken credit for... as with most legends.)
Fast forward a few years and it was all but forgotten by me until one day I had a revelation.... ironically while cutting the grass. I was thinking about Bigfoot experiences I have had in the past and when asked at a presentation once what Bigfoots "smelled like" by a curious youngster to which I responded (I always say the same thing)... "To me, I've noticed the smell being similar to decaying grass. Like when you pile up grass clippings in an area and then one day accidentally knock part of it over or dig down into the pile."
I don't know why I hadn't put this together before and I have two thoughts on this....
One, is it possible that the term "Grassman" was misinterpreted and they were actually called this based on the way they smell? Hunters for centuries have used things to mask their scent (and still do), could it be that these creatures use dead grass to mask their scent? After all, a deer, rabbit or other critter is less likely to take notice being downwind from the smell of dead grass.
Or two, could these early sightings be completely accurate and fact that this creature may bed down in grass or make bedding from grass? After all, if you lie in grass, you are going to smell like grass, right?
Unfortunately, unless you have smelled it yourself you will have to take my word for it since at present we are unable to photograph or record smells...
I am not sure if this smell is exclusive to Ohio's Bigfoot population because I have never had a close experience with one in any other state but it is surely interesting to me the irony of the title "Grassman" and the scent I have personally smelled before and after some sort of strange encounter in Ohio.
No doubt someone will call me out on this and say what they have smelled in their encounters was something different.. like rotten garbage or wet dog... or something... however this is not to say that what I have smelled was their natural scent and the latter was something the creature had picked up by being wet, dumpster diving, etc. or vice versa. I mean they could easily naturally smell like rotten garbage and use the grass scent to mask that (would you blame them?).
What I wouldn't give to know the exact truth on this matter... but in the meantime, my senses automatically heighten when I am out at night and smell that decaying grass scent.... just keep me away from compost piles!