Nowata County, Noxie, Oklahoma
From "Probe the Unknown" March 1976

"The Creature Takes a Holiday"

Bigfoot-like monster, takes a shine to Noxie, Oklahoma
and spends Labor Day Weekend terrorizing its residents.
By Hayden C. Hewes

When a Los Angeles television news anchorman reported the September, 1975, sightings of the "Moxie Monster," he passed the incidents off with a slighting reference to Oklahomans on hot summer days and led into a commercial. With a fumbling apology to the state and its residents, he returned to the air moments later.

Another broadcaster found tile "Moxie Monster's" name especially amusing. He too had been incorrectly informed that the small Oklahoma community where the sightings were occurring was called Moxie-it is, in fact, Noxie, Oklahoma.

But while newsmen in more sophisticated regions were poking fun at the "good ole boys" of Oklahoma for having the "moxie" to call their creature the "Moxie Monster," the residents of Noxie were becoming increasingly nervous about the hairy giant which seemed to have taken a fancy to their community. Bigfoot sightings had been reported in that section-northeastern Oklahoma-of tile country before, but never had so many people seen the creature so frequently in so short a time.

It was the end of summer-just about Labor Day-when Kenneth Tosh faced the creature. "I saw something, but I don't know what it is. I have no idea. It's about 7 to 8 feet tall, got hair all over its body. The eyes glow in the dark and it has a bad odor to it.

"It was just standing there watching us. I walked right up to it and it made a growling sound," Tosh recalled. (He later listened to "The Voice of Bigfoot" recording made by A.R. Berry [PROBE, November, 1975] and confirmed the sounds were similar to those he had heard.)

He then called Nowata County Sheriff Bob Arnold and asked him to come investigate the incident. When Arnold arrived, he searched for tracks, but "we were unable to find any tracks of ally kind." The sheriff was later able to locate some tracks approximately one mile south of the site of the Tosh sighting. He made plaster casts of the tracks and noted, "The print appeared to be eroded in the toe area. It was about 6 inches wide and 11 inches long. You know, the tiling about it, I can't understand any human being in those woods barefoot."

In those days after the first Tosh sighting several others would see the beast matching Bigfoot's description, including Tosh's wife, son and brother. "I was walking when all of a sudden it hollered. It had a high voice not made by any known creature. It was scary," Pearl Tosh remembers.
Jim Tosh reported he was standing with his brother Kenneth in the front yard when he heard "the weirdest scream I have ever heard. It was a high shrill scream. I could see these two big eyes just staring at me. t turned and looked away. When I looked back, it was gone."

As Monroe Coy tells it, "It was about 11:30 p.m. I was driving across the railroad tracks when I saw the eyes." He then described the eyes as the size of quarters and set between five and six inches apart.

Within the next few days, 11 other Noxie-area residents observed -and in one case shot at -the beast. Ranging in age from 15 to 72 years old, these witnesses are all considered reliable, responsible people by other Noxie residents.

The sightings had a two-fold effect on residents. Some people were frightened, while others found the whole thing quite exciting. Perhaps the most frightened was the Tosh family, first sighters of the creature. According to Sheriff Arnold Tosh, a sincere man, was "truly frightened." In fact, he moved "his family to Coffeyville, Kansas every night" in the weeks following the first sighting. The night this reporter camped with International Association for the Investigation of the Unexplained investigators near the Tosh home, site of the first sightings, was the first Kenneth Tosh had spent in his home since he saw the "Noxie Monster" there a few weeks before.

While some families, like the Tosh clan, were leaving tile area temporarily, outsiders, attracted by news of the sightings and the presence of numerous national media representatives and Canadian, English and Japanese newsmen, poured into the tiny community. Also drawn to Noxie were members of several Bigfoot research groups. As the investigators attempted to gather for study the available evidence, hundreds of curiosity seekers wandered the Noxie area in search of the "monster" itself. Residents and others, often armed, sought to bag the creature.

The number of armed people roaming the hilly, wooded region soon constituted a public safety problem. Sheriff Arnold feared these overzealous Bigfoot hunters would end up killing one another. Further, he felt shooting the creature was unfair. "I don't care if 30 monsters are up there. No one is going to shoot them. They have not hurt anyone," the sheriff asserted.

The presence of tile hordes of curiosity seekers made evidence gathering especially difficult for the investigators. Members of the Sasquatch Research Group of Independence, Missouri indicated that while the possibility of the beast's existence is "pretty good," curiosity seekers and the news media had trampled much of the physical evidence supporting this assumption by the time the researchers arrived. While group member Sue Lloyd noted, "We feel from our investigation, the people involved have seen something that has them upset," group co-director Irwin Alpert indicated his organization was "baffled" by the incident.

According to Alpert, he and co-director Ray Johnson were given the footprint cast taken by Sheriff Arnold. They have as yet been unable to identify the print definitively, and they are still studying it and the other evidence they gathered in Noxie. "We just cannot say what it (the "Noxie Monster") is. It's hard to tell, as we are still working on it."

Te International Association for the Investigation of the Unexplained also dispatched a team to Noxie on September 13-14, 1975. They interviewed Noxie witnesses and searched the area for evidence of the creature, camping near the Tosh home. They had no run-in with the "monster" and found most of the available evidence ruined by the hundreds of curiosity seekers roaming the area.

After the investigation, the association team noted that while no evidence proving beyond doubt that the "monster'' exists could be found, no indication of a hoax was discovered.
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Credit Source: Tom Cousino
© Probe the Unknown March 1976

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