On a dark and stormy night (no really!), more than 3,000 years ago in New Jersey, Mother Leeds gave birth to her thirteenth child - a deformed, winged monster said to have climbed out of her womb, up the chimney and into the beautiful Pine Barrens forest.
The line between legend and superstition is sometimes blurred, but for the people of New Jersey, the local “devil” is deeply rooted in history. More than 2,000 sightings of this infamous cryptid have been reported, including the 10 encounters published in the New York Times – in 2008. That’s not ancient history, folks.
Though there are fewer pictures of the creature than other popular international cryptids, the New Jersey Devil has made the pop culture rounds, landing roles in shows like the X-Files and Extreme Ghosthunters. Bruce Springsteen devoted an entire song to it, and the monster even lent its name to the National Hockey League.
The beastie may not be good luck for the local livestock, but the New Jersey Devils boast a Stanley Cup hat trick – 1995, 2000 and 2003.
He’s an Ace in our Most-Wanted Monsters Deck of cryptids.
Life-Saving Tip: Get outta Dodge, er, Jersey!