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18 June 2014
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Legacies - Black Country

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Myths and Legends
Spring-Heeled Jack
Could you catch Spring-Heeled Jack?
Spring-Heeled Jack

In May 2001, a terrifying phenomenon gripped the Indian capital, Delhi. A creature stalked the streets and the stairwells, leaping out at passers-by and clawing at them. The monster was described as about four feet tall with a hairy body and a face like an ape; locally they called it ‘the monkey man’. Although the creature did no physical injury to its victims, the sight alone was enough to make people fall from stairs or flee in terror. The Delhi police blamed the panic on the superstitions of uneducated people, whose fears were increased by electricity cuts. But, whatever the official line, it did not stop hundreds of vigilantes roaming the streets in search of the monkey man. It probably goes without saying that they never caught it.

Such a phenomenon is not restricted to the Asian sub-continent. The towns of the Black Country had their own version, one whose first and last appearance almost exactly coincided with the reign of Queen Victoria. They called him ‘Spring-Heeled Jack’. More...

Words: Chris Upton

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Your comments

1 ami from liverpool - 16 January 2004
"I think this site is very cool.But youd have to be a fool to beleave in fairy storys"

2 Peter King from Lincoln - 13 January 2004
"As a child, Spring-Heeled Jack was a name used to terrify children into good behavior. In my home town of Lincoln, Jack terrorized the population during 1877 and was seen dozens of times. "

3 Spring Heeled Jack from - 11 December 2003
"Having read your article i thought i better put a few things straight: Apart from the beard, my description is way out, my ears are not pointy, my eyes are not flashing and fiery they are in fact green and i certainly do not have horns!!! But to let you into a secret my jumping was not as incredible as you all think, i used a childs pogo stick!!! Regards Jack."

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Look back into the past using the Legacies' archives. Find nearly 200 tales from around the country in our collection.

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