Mysteries, Oddities, and Everything Strange: Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp


Bridget Vaughan, Staff Writer

Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp: Dr. Curtis Connors’ Dream Come True

You might be just as confused as I am when you hear about the existence of a lizard man. A lizard that stands on two feet and is as tall as you with a gigantic tail and big claws. Isn’t that just something out of The Amazing Spider-Man? Is this Dr. Curtis Connors’ doing? Well, unless you’ve seen a man in spandex swinging about the metropolitan area, this isn’t the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The rumors of well-renowned people existing behind the scenes as lizard people might be a falsehood, but those who seem to have witnessed the Lizard Man wandering about the Scape Ore Swamp won’t deny their foreign sightings. So what exactly is this rumored walking lizard? Has Dr. Connors’ influence spread too far into the real world, or are people just a bit too eager to support the lizard agenda?

What does the Lizard Man look like? Well, it’s pretty self-explanatory. Green scales covering a three-clawed hand and webbed feet with glowing red eyes and sharp teeth is something that might come to mind. A lashing tail, trunk-like legs, and stegosaurus-like spines snaking down its back are some of the most commonly reported traits of the Lizard Man by witnesses. Despite this, not much is known about the exact appearance of the Lizard Man, only stereotypical accounts influenced by pop culture.

The Lizard Man rose in prominence on July 14, 1988, when the sheriff of Lee County, South Carolina embarked on a mission to investigate a damaged car. The sheriff reported a rather odd scene, with muddy footprints wrapping around the car and tooth marks scattered across its sides. Following this odd occurrence, local teen Christopher Davis reported a similar strange event: a 7-foot-tall, green, lizard-like creature attempted to attack his car after he got a flat tire while driving home from work. Residents of Lee County became hooked on the story, and the popularity of the mysterious creature skyrocketed.

Local newspapers leapt at the opportunity to cover the oddity, and shops were marketing Lizard Man t-shirts to boast proximity to the strange beast. Anyone and everyone flocked to Lee County in order to get even a chance at glimpsing the Lizard Man, whether it be tourists wanting to snap a photo or hunters eager to gun it down. A $1 million reward was issued by a local radio station to anyone who was able to hunt and capture the Lizard Man alive. Following the media attention, Kenneth Orr reported to have wounded the bipedal lizard, but was later arrested for illegally carrying weapons—and the scales he presented as evidence were hoaxed. Orr, a fan of the legend, reportedly wanted to further the myth through his stunt. As the summer continued, more and more cars were reported to have viciously been attacked by the stealthy creature. The legend died down as sightings eventually decreased in frequency.

The popularity of the Lizard Man hit a peak again as CNN popularized the tale of a couple who suffered car damages in 2008. They were passionate in their belief it was caused by the Lizard Man, but the assailant was identified as a wild coyote or wolf. In 2015, a woman claimed to have taken a snapshot of the creature as she exited her church, but nothing came of this photograph. The South Carolina Emergency Management Division made light of this South Carolinian mystery by tweeting out a warning to expect activity in Scape Ore Swamp during the upcoming solar eclipse. The supposedly nocturnal creature was expected to make a reemergence during this astrological phenomenon, but nothing occurred and hopeful believers were let down once again. 

Just because there seems to be a dearth of evidence supporting the case of the Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp, nothing seems to be stopping truthers. The Lizard Man might not have the same fame as Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster, but it makes up for that in its hilarity. Who wouldn’t keel over if they saw a man-sized lizard scurrying around in a swamp (whether it be from fear or laughter)? If you ever find yourself journeying across Highway 15 down in South Carolina, keep a close eye out for any suspicious activity in the woods beyond. Maybe you can spot a bipedal lizard wandering the woods beyond—and, if you’re lucky, a spider-clad person swinging after it.