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ATS Hunts For The Missing Thunderbird Picture

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posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 12:39 AM
reply to post by iamcamouflage

That is certainly interesting and quite possibly true, although I do not think we should stop searching just yet.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 01:27 AM
reply to post by jkrog08

Just to make it easier to link to. The article I posted used this as its source and that article used the following periodicals for its research. I think many of the books that people have mentioned are in this link. you have to scroll down to "Part III: Weird Predators Petting Zoo"

I'm not sure if this account is accurate but I would not be surprised if people are confusing the writings of Pearl with some of the other hoax pictures to create a memory of a photo that didnt exist.

This paragraph seems to match exactly what people are saying in this thread.

In time, people who heard the story began to believe that they had previously seen the photo with their own eyes. Somehow, people felt convinced that they had once marveled at the strange picture in some old book or newspaper, often noting that they didn't realize the significance of the photo at the time, and regretting that they had not kept it. The details might differ from one recollection to the other, with some recalling the bird had feathers and others saying it looked more like a pterodactyl, and some thinking the bird was nailed to a wall and others remembering that it was held with wings outstretch by a large group of men. But no matter what the specifics, each person feels certain his or her memory is true.

This could be completely wrong but I would say that this makes the most sense as to the origin and "location" of the lost photo.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 02:15 AM

Originally posted by ravenshadow13
reply to post by The Soothsayer

I posted that link before. Apparently it's a hoax.
From the link:

That photo was published in an issue of Strange Magazine 19 in 1998. It’s referred to as the “Ivan Verlaine” photo. It’s a complete hoax. Later, in Strange 20, Mark Chorvinsky showed how the photo was manipulated from “a posed photograph of the capture of the outlaw John Sontag,” in 1892.

Apparently the magazine actually says that it is a hoax. I'm in the process of trying to get access to the last two issues of the magazine, even though apparently the "Thunderbird" series was never finished because the author died.

It's got to be in one of these:
But it can't be the answer, especially if the magazine declared it as a hoax, and if they continued the search in later issues.

[edit on 8/6/2009 by ravenshadow13]

The John Sontag photo:

with a body instead of the bird. I don't know if there was more than one picture taken because while it's some of the same people, they are in a different pose. So that one, yes, definitely a hoax.

The picture I remember seeing (and I have no idea of where) is like the drawing jkrog08 posted-big bird nailed to a barn, but with only one man standing with it.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 03:38 AM

Originally posted by danny-arclight
You know what I think?

I think that originally in the 1800s in America, White Western Amercans couldnt handle the concept of the amrican indian legends - in other words, they took the mythologies of the Indains literally, in a country they didnt have much concept of at the time.

The Indian thunderbird, I feel has more to do with cloud formations, thunder and lightning than it does with an actual bird, and the ability of Indian tribes to use their imaginations, or imagine those things through image based concepts - therefore, this legend has always been based around an image - that we all imagine (or want to imagine) we have seen (and the way the myth and hoaxes have helped to encourage this) mean we see what we want to see - just like those earlier frontiersmen were both frightened and mystified by these legends and exaggerated what they saw from large eagles etc.

I think, with the advent of photography, this was one of those myths that was crying out to be exploited by people makin gmoney from it in the 'freak shows' and sensational stories of the time...

I dunno, just my thoughts, but this idea of the 'missing' photo has been going on for at least 40 years. No one has found it yet, (though everyone thinks they have seen it) - and not even the Internet has turned up the lost 'legendary' photograph either. Its an urban myth... nothing more

the discovery network commercial that i saw did not mention "thunderbird." it was more interested in stories of locals having children carried off by these big birds.

the tribe that i belong to believe that the thunderbird brings the rain, wind, thunder, and lightning.

thunderbirds are said to be large enough to carry a whale in it's beak, however, they remain unseen because they are always hidden by the clouds. only the thunder from the wings, or, the lightning from their beaks/eyes is seen or heard.

good luck with the pic hunting. if enough people try you never know what might be uncovered.


posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 06:09 AM
You might find this interesting, it's a little long to post but here is the first paragraph or two.

The following article was written in 1958 by Charles Harnett as a project of the Illinois State Museum. It was never published due to disagreement between Harnett and a museum curator as to interpretation of certain recorded accounts.

Tourists venturing along the Mississippi near Alton, Illinois become predictably startled when seeing for the first time the colorful but grotesque painting of the Piasa monster bird on a bluff overlooking the river. But modern riverboat sightseers are probably far less shocked than was Father Jacques Marquette, the famous missionary who first explored that great river, when he discovered a similar pictograph said to have been painted by prehistoric Indians centuries earlier.

Since Father Marquette first made known his 1673 discovery of painted monsters "upon which the boldest Indians dared not long rest their eyes", a furious controversy has raged among ethnohistorians aiming to prove or disprove the validity of the Piasa (pronounced pie-ah-saw) painting.

more can be found here.

Hope this helps.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 06:53 AM
I purchased and read edition 22 online of strange mag, and to be honest it doesn't really narrow things down much on this issue.. It's mostly about a tradition in the old west of newspapermen making up hoaxes on slow news weeks - and the tradition of using variations on the word duck, or canard, or various other words to tip off other newsmen that the story was a hoax. The author of the article also described how in the same space on a later page of the Epitaph issue the thunderbird story appeared in, there was an article specifically referencing and talking about newspaper hoaxes. The other telling factor, according to the author, was that this particular story is never referenced again in later issues, which, in a small town, it would be huge news for weeks if not months..

The Epitaph ran no photographs, so there could have been no Thunderbird Photograph associated with the fictitious downing of a giant flying crocodile.

If the Tombstone Thunderbird case was a hoax, then the Thunderbird Photograph had to have either been of a different case, or was itself a legend.

If the photo was from another case altogether, it is curious that none but the Tombstone case has ever been suggested as the source.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 08:43 AM
I always liked the Thunderbird subject, though I never seen one, they could still exist since the Teratorn is proof that nature can create such big birds

I never seen the pic described by the OP but I have seen the Thunderbird video, a large bird landing or flying away from some trees.

I think it was from Arthur C Clarke's mysterious universe videos or something like that.

That video is off the internet too.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 10:40 AM
I have some pictures from a magazine that I will attempt to post.
I hope this works.
I know that this one photo may be etched into some peoples minds but I know this is not the one you are talking about. I think I know where the Thunderbird photo is. I have seen it long, long ago. I will check and post it if I find it.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 10:55 AM
Found it!!!!!!!

Just kidding....

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 11:32 AM
Have you guys checked out the book, Mysteries of the Unexplained yet to see if it is there.

I have the book at home but I am on vacation and cant get a hold of it for about another week and a half.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 11:55 AM
reply to post by Geolion1

Yes, I did and it is not there. Another idea is to check 50 years of issues of Fate magazine. Any takers?

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 12:15 PM
The photo that all of you are looking for is in a "Wild West" or "Old West" or "Frontier Times" magazine; or possibly all three magazines.

I've seen the photo several times. I have it in at least two magazines in my magazine collection, but that collection is in storage and it is a very large collection of old magazines, and no I'm not going to go looking through all of my metal chests holding all of those magazines to tell you what page its on in which magazine. But those are the magazines that you should be looking through.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 06:08 PM
I haven't read all of the replies in this thread yet, so this may have already been mentioned. I remember seeing a picture that resembles the description of this lost photo. I believe it was in an Ivan T. Sanderson book. Not sure what the title is. The book should be over at my parents house. The next time I go by there I'll look, if it is there then I'll grab it with a camera.

Now, don't get too excited though. The last time I looked at this book was probably in the early '90's and it may not be a photo. It may have just been an artists rendition.

I have noticed a few of the replies mention that the civil war style photos are fakes made for a TV show. I don't know any thing about that, but the last one in the list of "This is not it" in the OP just is not right. The guy with his foot on the thing's head is wearing a full brim hat. A soldier in the war with a full brim hat would have one side of the brim folded up against the crown. That way he could march with his rifle resting on his shoulder without bumping his hat with the rifle.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 06:09 PM
Here's a picture of a large bird nailed to a barn

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 10:22 PM
Just some quick replies. I apologize for not replying individually, but I've been out all day.

Okay. I believe that the image in Sanderson's book is a sketch, like the member above me who posted a sketch of what the photograph supposedly looked like.

The picture of the bird that was scanned into this thread. Thank you, chomps, for doing that. I don't believe that picture could be causing the memories because it doesn't resemble what people remember. It is possible, though. Very possible.

Innamute- So do you think the story itself in the Epitaph was an example of a hoax? Just your opinion...

Yes, we have checked out numerous printings of the Mysteries of the Unexplained. The picture was not in any of them. There was, however, a story of a pterodactyl in France. I believe that this supports the idea of people creating memories and images from very detailed articles or stories.

Thank you for the WinterSteel article. It's very interesting. My only problem with this hypothesis, the Jack Pearl one, is that I believe H.M. Cramner presented the story of the Thunderbird to Saga and Fate before Jack Pearl wrote his article. I think that Pearl copied the ideas from Cramner. The writer from Strange Mag presented a good deal of evidence in this direction, and I tend to agree with him.

From my quote in my second post in this thread (

In September, 1963, a scant four months after Pearl's Saga article Cranmer wrote a letter to Fate about the Thunderbird Photograph.
There are many clues that Cranmer was Pearl's source for the Thunderbird Photo tale. Pearl writes in his article that some thunderbird reports were received by Saga magazine "from a Pennsylvania resident.

posted on Aug, 8 2009 @ 10:33 PM

Who was it who asked me about the Phoenix Lights Photo in Mysteries of the Unexplained?

I think I found the picture you were talking about. Shoot me over a U2U when you get a chance.

posted on Aug, 9 2009 @ 01:05 AM
Here's another section of the article in strange 22, that I think you'll find interesting..

Another is the use of the word "canard" (French for "duck"). John Michell and Robert J. M. Rickard's book Phenomena (Thames and Hudson, London, 1977, p. 71) included a case of a supposed living pterodactyl that they described as "perhaps the damnedest piece in this whole book." Phenomena is packed with strange material, so this is really saying something. The authors write that in early 1856 French railway workmen blasting a tunnel cracked open a boulder from which a pterodactyl-like creature emerged, cried out, and died. The account, filled with all kinds of wonderful detail (sharp teeth; thick, oily skin; crooked talons), was taken from the Illustrated London News of February 9, 1856. This paper quoted the Presse grayloise. This case was most certainly a hoax. Had the authors either a better grasp of Latin or knowledge of the use of code words like canard throughout the history of journalistic hoaxing, they might have thought twice before including it in a book of supposedly true phenomena. Nevertheless, it is a good story. In 1985 British author-researcher Michael Goss exposed this entombed pterodactyl case in the skeptical UFO-oriented publication Magonia. Goss noted that in the Illustrated London News article the winged monster was taken to a naturalist in the town of Gray, France, and that this paleontology expert identified the beastie as none other than a Pterodactylus anas. Readers with some knowledge of Latin would have known that anas is Latin for "duck." "Duck" is English for "canard." [Michael Goss, "'The French Pterodactyl' a Fortean Folly," Magonia 21 (December 1985), pp. 7-8, 11]

I think it's interesting because it's the exact article seen on the page of the book we've been looking at, about the pterodactyl in france.

Do I personally think it's a hoax?. It's possible. The writer of the article in strange certainly makes a good case for it. The lack of further articles especially is telling.. No other newspapers picked it up, the same paper didn't print any further updates on the story, etc.

This is not to say that the creature doesn't exist, but the epitaph article is almost certainly a hoax, at the very least not the source of the picture.

I do think it's possible that people have simply believed there's a picture, been tricked by their brains into thinking they saw it. Part of my belief for this is the fact that different artists renditions show the bird in different orientations - if everyone was referring to the same picture, sure, something simple like the number of people might change, but I'm pretty sure beak up, beak down would be something people would remember clearly. Our visual memories can confuse number, but I think it's a lot harder to mis-remember orientation. But if you're just visualising a photo in your head, thinking of something described to you, we all see these things differently..

Of course, the only way to *truly* test this, would be to start such a hoax yourself.

posted on Aug, 9 2009 @ 02:58 AM
[img]][atsimgmages/member/bbf50a7f24bf.jpg[/img]In reference to photographs being removed from circulation.......There was another Thunderbird photograph, front page, with a Headline that read something like "At last a photograph" or words to that effect. It was a mid-western newapaper and i believe it was circa 1947. Taking the conspiracy theory a step further, the town of Alton, Illinois once had a cave in a bluff by the river. This cave was believed to be the home of the Picaosa Bird, there were cave drawings and very sophisticated pottery items and a cavern containing 3000-4000 human bones. Both were destroyed by quarrying. One other thing, it is very close to Cahokia which is home to non-human entities left over from the Mississippian era.

posted on Aug, 10 2009 @ 07:52 PM
I remember seeing a documentary on pbs about the alton illinois cave drawings. right on point

posted on Aug, 10 2009 @ 09:34 PM
the one i saw was an old black and white photo (from the 20's or 30's ) of a large black "crow" with long, very long wings stretched inside of a barn, top of the wall (no feathers visible).

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