Lake Monster Smashes Boat—Men Thrown Overboard

The Evening Herald, a newspaper from Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, reported an encounter in which a lake monster attacked a boat with four men inside in their June 22, 1893 issue. The incident occurred in Bass Lake outside of Knox, Indiana.

George Scoville, the attorney who represented President Garfield’s assassin, went fishing with Sheriff Vanderweele, attorney Beeman, and auditor Knosman on a day when something that defies explanation occurred.

Beeman had tied a large lure on his line and hooked into something massive. After a lengthy fight, the “fish” began to tire out and Knosman helped him pull it toward the boat. Before the pair could land the fish, it sprang back into action; it darted off and smashed its mighty tail into the boat. With that, Beeman and Knosman were thrown into the water. Scoville and Vanderweele managed to swim to shore after the boat had sank in 12 feet of water. Knosman and Beeman were rescued by nearby boaters.

The foursome described the monster as being 40 feet long and 3 feet thick; it has a large, pointed head; the creature was greenish-black in color and had no discernable fins.

Two years prior to the event, a rowboat was capsized after something swimming fast crashed into it. The summer before, the steamship City of Kokomo was pulled by something that became tangled in its anchor lines. Stories go further back—in 1881, something huge tore a large hole in a farmer’s seining net. He did not get a glimpse of the monster.