What is the Mothman?

Investigating Point Pleasant’s creepy legend, What is the Mothman? On November 12th, 1966, the Mothman legend found its home in a small town in West Virginia, captivating the world with one of modern mythology’s most powerful and mysterious stories. While speculation surrounds the identity of this creature, there is irrefutable evidence that proves its existence.


On the 12th of November 1966, a local gravedigger working in a cemetery had his attention drawn by something strange. Glancing up from his work, he witnessed a massive figure soaring over his head, swiftly moving from tree to tree across the cemetery. Later, he would describe the figure as a “brown moth being.” This marked the first reported sighting of the elusive creature that would become known as the Mothman, shrouded in mystery to this day.


Just three days later, on the 15th of November, Roger Scarberry and his companions were driving past the McClintic Wildlife Management Area when they noticed something unusual. Familiar with the area like many young people from the nearby towns, they stopped the car in front of the factory gate, sensing that things were not as they should be. Two glowing red lights appeared near the gate, but to their astonishment, the lights began moving towards them, revealing themselves as a pair of glowing red eyes attached to a dark figure.

This creature stood nearly 7 feet tall, with its massive wings folded behind its back. Scarberry quickly accelerated the car, desperately trying to escape. However, the creature took flight and effortlessly pursued them down the road, its glowing red eyes remaining just behind them even as Scarberry pushed the speedometer past 100 miles per hour. Eventually, reaching the safety of the Mason County courthouse, the creature vanished into the darkness.

Deputy Millard Halstead, realizing the genuine fear and trauma experienced by Scarberry and his companions, took their accounts seriously. The witnesses, interviewed separately, all provided identical testimonies, their terror evident in their eyes. The consistency of their stories convinced Deputy Halstead that something truly had occurred, dismissing any notion of a hoax.

urban legends


The very next night, as Marcella Bennett visited her friends, the Thomas family, she encountered a horrifying experience. Approaching her car parked outside the house, she suddenly witnessed a large grey creature, resembling a human but with enormous wings and glowing red eyes, rising from the ground nearby. Overwhelmed by fear, Bennett dropped her infant daughter Teena and fell on top of her in sheer terror. Paralyzed by fear, she remained motionless for minutes, locked in a petrifying gaze with the creature’s hypnotic red eyes. Although aware of her surroundings, Bennett found herself physically unable to move.

Breaking free from her paralysis, Bennett finally mustered the strength to grab her daughter and seek refuge inside the house. As they called the police for assistance, the witnesses inside reported that the cryptid, stepping onto their porch, curiously peered through the windows. However, by the time the police arrived, the enigmatic creature had vanished.


In the Point Pleasant area, the sightings of the Mothman continued to escalate over the following year, solidifying its legend. The Gettysburg Times documented an additional eight sightings within just three days of the initial claims. Among them were two volunteer firefighters who claimed to have witnessed a large bird with strikingly red eyes. The reports grew more intriguing when Newell Partridge, a resident of Salem, West Virginia, shared his peculiar encounter. Partridge described witnessing strange patterns appearing on his television screen, followed by an unexplained sound emanating from outside his home. Shining a flashlight in the direction of the noise, he allegedly came face-to-face with two red eyes resembling bicycle reflectors, staring back at him.

The Mothman’s presence lingered, leaving an indelible mark on the region’s collective consciousness. The mysterious creature’s inexplicable appearances and eerie encounters continued to captivate the community, drawing attention from both locals and beyond. As the legend of the Mothman evolved, so did the desire to understand the truth behind this strange cryptid creature.

strange creatures


Over time, skilled sketch artists painstakingly compiled drawings depicting the creature’s appearance. In each one, it was the piercing red eyes that caught everyone’s attention. Strangely, every recount of the strange creature could be identified except for one crucial detail: its face remained a mystery. Witness after witness shared their accounts, all revealing a peculiar phenomenon—once captivated by the creature’s eyes, none could recall the details of its surrounding visage.

Adding to the enigma, those who observed the Mothman taking flight shared a common observation. Rather than flapping its enormous wings like a typical bird, the creature would extend its wings and ascend into the air with an effortless grace, reminiscent of a floating balloon.

Watch this scary phone scene from the Mothman Prophecies Movie

However, the story takes an even more bewildering turn when considering the concurrent sightings of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs) in the same vicinity. People who saw either the Mothman or UFOs reported visits of mysterious men dressed entirely in black attire, complete with suits, hats, and sunglasses. These shadowy figures would approach the witnesses, issuing threats to ensure their silence about the extraordinary events they had witnessed. Were these government agents already aware of the true nature of these sightings, or were they emissaries from the Mothman’s realm attempting to suppress any revelations?


Author John Keel merged the Mothman sightings and reported UFO activity to craft his book, The Mothman Prophecies. This literary work later served as the inspiration for the movie adaptation, The Mothman Prophecies (2002). Keel’s story and the film captured the collective imagination, turning the town into an iconic destination for conspiracy theorists, visitors, and enthusiasts of the paranormal. To commemorate the visits of the Mothman, an annual festival has been held in the town for years, solidifying its place in popular culture.

Today, the presence of the Mothman still lingers in Point Pleasant, West Virginia, through various manifestations. Visitors can explore a dedicated Mothman museum, welcoming visitors every day of the week. Additionally, a magnificent 12-foot tall chrome-polished statue stands proudly. It showcases the creature with its colossal steel wings and penetrating red eyes. For those unable to visit in person, click to watch the MOTHCAM provides a live stream this allows you to catch a glimpse of the statue and stay connected to the Mothman phenomenon 24/7.

If you find yourself traveling through West Virginia, it is worth keeping a watchful eye on the sky. You never know what mysterious sight might capture your attention.