There aren’t many creatures through the Appalachian mountains that can boast such widespread sightings as The White Things. These cryptids take on many forms: sometimes bipedal, Bigfoot-like creatures, more often they are seen in the shape of hellhounds.
Reports of them always hint at a spectral, ghostly quality to them. As if the White Things are more spirit than animal. Some claim that they attack in a vicious strike only to disappear without leaving a single wound or drop of blood.
Native American myths claim that White Things hint at a tragic, imminent death. In this way, they have become something like the American banshee. There is an obvious connection with the European black dogs, which are also omens of death and misfortune.
The white things have many myths around them and sightings often pop up in some of the oddest places. For example, some people allegedly reported seeing a white creature in Point Pleasent around the same time as the Mothman sightings. Another account, this time as early as the 90’s, detailed an encounter with a white-haired creature that seemed to float next to their speeding car.
A possible explanation for the origin of the creature comes from a South Carolina folktale. The story goes that there was a traveling salesman and his white dog who unwittingly stumbled across a murder scene. The local townspeople falsely accused the stranger and lynched him from a tree. His loyal dog tried to fend off the men but was shot and wounded. Later the people found that they’d hung the wrong man. The dog wouldn’t let anyone near his master’s body. Then both body and hound disappeared one day. A ghostly dog then began to attack the people in the lynch mob one by one, either seriously wounding them or killing members of their family.
To me, this cryptid falls into a fascinating place. I’ve always thought that albino creatures have an almost mystical air about them and in my mind, it wouldn’t be a stretch to think that seeing one in the wild could lead to these strange stories.
(If you enjoyed the Penanggalan, please feel free to check out other fascinating cryptids under the Creature Feature category.)
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