Graveyard Shift
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The Pope Lick Monster Is No Mere Urban Legend - He Has An Actual Body Count

Updated October 13, 2018 28.2k views11 items

So, before you start laughing at the Pope Lick Monster urban legend for its name, keep in mind that people have actually died searching for this monster. As far as creepy cryptids with a body count go, the Pope Lick Monster has been luring people to their doom for decades, and enthusiasts are still flocking to his bridge that runs over the Pope Lick Creek. Whether or not you believe in scary urban legends like this, the train that passes over his supposed abode is very real, and can be very deadly.

There are several monster legends from Kentucky, but this particular one is downright confusing. Some tales say he started as a circus freak, or was the product of a sexual relationship between a farmer and one of his sheep. Some say he kills with an axe, others say he lures you into the darkness, never to be seen again.

One thing all the legends do say, however, is that this monster wants to trick you into coming close, and then he will kill you. And if you do venture onto his bridge, rest assured that, even if he doesn't get you, a speedy train may still be your undoing. 

  • Photo: Jeff Power / flickr / CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

    People Actually Die Looking For Him

    Unfortunately, even if the Goatman is only a legend, the deaths surrounding his bridge are very real. There are two confirmed cases of people dying on or below the bridge in 1987 and again in 1988. There are many injuries and close calls as well, which makes sense considering the trestle is 90 feet high and is over 700 feet across. Trains cross the bridge up to 25 times per day, and once you're on the middle of the bridge, there is no good way to get down or away from the oncoming impact. 

    There was even a more recent case in 2016. A couple from Ohio went searching for the monster, and were not able to get off the tracks when a train came rushing along. The boyfriend was able to save himself by dangling off the edge of the bridge, but even then the train came so close that it left a mark on his arm. His girlfriend, on the other hand, was struck by the train and died almost instantly. There are injuries almost every year by those seeking out the Pope Lick Monster. Whether they are just thrill seekers or are following the siren call of the Goatman, it's impossible to say.

  • Photo: Sarah G... / flickr / CC-BY 2.0

    Maryland's Goat Man May Be Linked To This Monster

    Strangely enough, the Pope Lick Monster is not the only goat monster out there terrorizing folks. The Maryland Goatman is often depicted as being similar to the Pope Lick Monster, even though though they are states apart, with the Pope Lick Monster inhabiting Kentucky. This other monster supposedly targets lovers, and chases them down with an axe, scaring them and threatening to kill them. He also supposedly kills dogs, and makes a horrible squealing or screaming animal noise.

    However, it has been suggested that the monsters are similar, or even the same creature. For one thing, the Pope Lick Monster legend says that he was originally found as a deformed infant in Beltsville, Maryland. The Maryland Goatman also lives on a bridge, where he lures people to their deaths. Whether or not these two are brothers, the same creature, or completely unrelated somehow, remains to be seen. 

  • Photo: Thawt Hawthje / flickr / CC-BY 2.0

    There May Be A Link To Local Satanists

    One origin story about the monster says that he was not some sort of mutant or circus freak, but was instead related to Satanic rituals. This tale says that he is the reincarnated form of a farmer who once used to sacrifice goats to Satan in order to get supernatural powers. This new form, or spirit, still stalks the area.

    Unfortunately, this particular legend has gained attention from some Satanic worshipers. There were rumors that, in the mid 1970s, a Satanic cult began doing demonic rituals in the Pope Lick Road area. Cats and dogs began to disappear, and it seems they were being used in blood rituals on the mysterious Four Winds farm. This farm was just a short distance from the train trestle, and the Satanists who gathered there allegedly worshiped the Pope Lick Monster, believing he was the embodiment of Bathomet, also known as the Goat of Mendes. Even into the '90s, people could supposedly hear drum beats and chanting coming from the farm on dark nights.

  • Photo: Metaweb / CC-BY

    He May Pretend To Be Your Friend

    Horrifyingly enough, the Goatman seems to have some form of psychic ability, according to some tales. And it likes to play mind games. The reason we know this is because, in order to lure you to your doom, it will sometimes mimic people you know. It will shout out to you, sounding like a a dear friend, and you, ever trustingly, will simply follow it. It can even call out your name. Even if it is not calling out to you as a friend or loved one, it may still imitate other noises. It may sound like a cat, or even a crying baby. The Pope Lick Monster is willing to do whatever it takes to convince you to wander out onto the deadly bridge, or below into its clutches.