International Cryptozoology Museum founder Loren Coleman isn’t on a mission to prove that mysterious creatures such as Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster exist. Instead, Coleman encourages visitors to draw their own conclusions from compelling evidence—such as supposedly authentic fecal matter that a ferocious snow creature left in its wake.
Cryptozoology is essentially the study of all unexplained and unaccounted for lifeforms. On occasion, cryptozoology enthusiasts have helped discover rare animals which were thought to be long extinct. The solitary, secretive okapi—which is a close relative of the modern giraffe—was championed by the cryptozoology community before finally being formally observed by regular biologists in the 2oth century. The International Cryptozoology Museum features a display dedicated to the okapi, which is often referred to as the African unicorn due to its delicately horned head.
Dedicated fans of the zanier branches of cryptozoology certainly won’t be let down by Loren Coleman’s 10,000-piece collection of oddities. The International Cryptozoology Museum features hair samples, footprints, and gargantuan skulls from unidentified animals which may or may not be related to a mysterious, imposing North American ape known as Sasquatch.
One of the museum’s most popular exhibits is the famed Feejee Mermaid—which is a hoax that was created by circus man P.T. Barnum in the 19th century. Barnum sewed a sizable fish tail on the shriveled body of a primate and claimed that the grotesque figure was an authentic mermaid which was recovered from the sea.
The International Cryptozoology Museum features some far out displays, but there is no question that there are some legitimate biological mysteries that are waiting to be solved. Nessie the Loch Ness Monster just might be an ancient sea serpent who occasionally surfaces. A trip to Maine’s most curious museum will help you make up your mind about Scotland’s most famous resident.
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