(Original image by by Currier & Ives, retouched by Alternate Histories)

Over a century ago, the NY Times printed the following report, regarding a man living on Wall Street in Lower Manhattan, a trip to New Jersey, and a sea serpent. Intrigued? Keep reading:

"Phillip N. Jackson, Vice President of the Newark Electric Light and Power Company, confirms the story told by Willard P. Shaw of 41 Wall Street, New York, last week, of the appearance of a sea serpent last Sunday off the shore at Spring Lake [New Jersey]. Mr. Jackson says he saw the monster with his naked eye a half mile from shore, and also had a view of it when two miles away, through Mr. Shaw's marine glasses.

He says it was traveling through the water at a great rate of speed, and was about 100 feet long. A number of folds in his body were plainly seen as they rose and fell. At times the monster raised his body ten feet in the air, and it then presented a terrible sight. Mr. Jackson says that, so far as he is concerned, he has no doubt that the object he saw was a genuine sea serpent."

Man, the drugs in the '80s were strong. The sighting also appeared in Scientific American at the time, where a description was included:

"A great sea serpent was seen off the Jersey coast on Sunday afternoon. The testimony concerning the monster is well corroborated. An excellent view was had through binoculars while it was passing directly opposite at a distance of not more than half a mile. The head was of a peculiar shape, quite unlike that of any creature Mr. Shaw had ever seen, and was as large around as a flour barrel, but longer. The nose and mouth resembled those of an alligator. There were no tentacles to be seen. The body was smooth and round, of dark color."

The creature was estimated to be around 100 feet long, and fast, traveling around 50 miles an hour, as it jumped above the water several times.

The article ran on September 30th, 1895, 120 years ago tomorrow—will the serpent rise from the seas on its anniversary? Will it join forces with the East River serpent of yore, Rosie? Seems the late 1800s were high times for sea serpents. Rosie greeted New Yorkers shortly after the Brooklyn Bridge was constructed in 1883, and at least one rendering claims there were "near-daily assaults by her," noting she often grappled with the bridge itself.

[h/t New York Today]