The Rose Files
True Scary Stories from Life
                             The Mysterious Iceman of Minnesota!

                                                         ~ Rose Titus ~

     And now Dear Readers, we have the Mysterious Iceman of Minnesota, more commonly known as the
“Minnesota Iceman”!

     I actually saw (or saw a replica of) this preserved unique and bizarre specimen while it was being
loaned out to the Cryptozoology Museum, which is run by the well-known Bigfoot expert Loren Coleman.  It
was kept in a glass case, and man that thing is ugly!  It looks like a shorter, nastier version of the more
famous Sasquatch.  In fact, the Cryptozoology Museum also has a life-sized stuffed Bigfoot for visitors to
stand next to while having their pictures taken – and Bigfoot looks like a fluffy overgrown teddy bear
compared to the Iceman.

     But never mind it’s sad and unfortunate appearance – Let’s learn more about the Minnesota Iceman!

     The story of this strange beast begins in the late 1960’s when the showman Frank Hansen put the
carcass of this horrible deceased and monstrous thing on exhibit, claiming it was found in the icy waters
near Siberia by a fishing vessel.  News of this claim reached the famous researcher Ivan Sanderson of the
“Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained”.

     Next, Sanderson and Bernard Heuvelmans (of the prestigious Royal Institute of Natural Science of
Belgium!) – and both learned men had an interest in cryptozoology, the study of strange creatures such as
the Loch Ness Monster and Bigfoot and other – went to check this strange critter out for themselves.  They
went to see the monster as it was being kept in a trailer in Minnesota.  Sanderson said, “We considered
this to be a genuine and unique example of a most priceless specimen.”  In a scientific journal,
Heuvelmans declared he discovered a “new species!

     These experts examined the body and noticed an eyeball falling out - possibly from a gunshot - and
one of its arms appeared to have been broken.  It was barrel chested and had enormous hands.  The
glass case it was contained in had cracked, letting out a horrible smell of rotting flesh and death.

     Sanderson wrote to the director of primate biology at the Smithsonian, John Napier.  And so of course
Napier had to investigate in the name of science.  However, now the showman Hansen would not allow
Napier to see the creature.  But the Smithsonian, still taking the matter rather seriously, contacted the
Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the belief that perhaps this deceased “thing” was some type of
primitive caveman or Neanderthal, and worried that it may have been killed on purpose to put on display.  
If that were the case, it would have been a murder!

     A special agent with the FBI actually came to check things out, but decided it wasn’t worth the federal
government’s time.  The “thing” however was also reported to U.S. Customs, since it was allegedly
“imported” from Siberia.  Around this same time, a woman came forward claiming that it was herself who
killed the beast, and that she shot it while out hunting (which would explain the popped out eyeball!).

     Hansen started to claim that an anonymous millionaire now owned the original dead body of the
“Iceman” and that he was putting a replica of the Iceman on display for the public to enjoy (and pay money
to see).  Napier could only study photographs of the beast.  The Smithsonian began to call around
Hollywood prop houses and found one that admitted to making the model of the Iceman – perhaps this
being the “replica” Hansen claimed was now on display instead of the original that no one was to be
allowed to see for whatever reason.  The Smithsonian then decided the “Iceman” was nothing more than a
carnival exhibit made of rubber and fur.

     But is that all there is to this story?  And was there ever an original “real dead Iceman” to begin with?  
Or was the Iceman nothing more than a cheap carnival hoax?  If the Iceman was nothing but a hoax all
along, where did the awful smell come from when the glass of its container cracked?  And why did the
original Iceman carcass appear to have been shot?

     Going back to the tale that the thing was found in the cold waters near Siberia, take note that
researchers Boris Porchnev, Dmitri Bayanov, and Marie-Jeanne Koffman have collected reports of “wild-
men” from the Caucasus and Mongolia – wild-men that very much resemble our Minnesota Iceman, and
there are those who wonder if this could be the same species!

     The Minnesota Iceman:  Is it real?  Is it fake?  Or is there a real Iceman stashed away in a freezer
somewhere, while a fake one is on display for the public?  The sad truth is that we don’t know, and
probably never will. But somewhere, out there, there is a monster stuffed in a big refrigerator.

     If you want to learn more, then check out these resources:
             1.        Redfern, Nick, The Monster Files, New Page Books, 2013 (excellent book).
             2.        Crair, Ben, Call of the Wild Man, Smithsonian Magazine, September 2018.
             3.        Naish, Darren, The Strange Case of the Minnesota Iceman, Scientific American, January 2,
             4.        Article on Prairie Ghosts website:   www. Iceman. html:  “The Minnesota
Iceman:  America’s Legendary Sideshow Attraction:  Was it Real?”