DescriptionThe Lake Murray monster was described in The Independent News in 1980 as "a cross between a snake and something prehistoric."
SightingsThe monster [Messie] first 'surfaced' in 1933 when residents of Irmo and Ballentine (the famous Gilbert Little sighting) saw a cousin of the Loch Ness Monster. Sightings have continued almost every year since then.
Buddy Browning, his wife Shirley and their friend Kord Brazell were enjoying themselves fishing on the lake back in one of the coves when the monster charged them. They denied a South Carolina Wildlife Department claim that it could have been an alligator or a large fish, like a sturgeon. (Alligators are not native to the lake.) In a 1990 letter to the South Carolina Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks, Corder said he and his son have seen something in the waters not once, but twice. "This serpent-like creature is 40-60 feet long with the head and body resembling a snake, with a tail of an eel."
Lake Murray Biologist Lance Harper was in charge of keeping track of incoming reports. "I've talked to ten or twelve people that have seen it. They were reputable, not on drugs or drinking," Harper said. During his 20-plus years working on Lake Murray, Harper said he never saw "the monster" but admits that he did find unexplainable large holes in nets he had set around the lake while studying habitat.
These and many other cases are documented in a booklet about the "Loch Murray Monster." This booklet (3rd edition now available for purchase) contains almost 50 pages of detailed sightings over the years. While it is not unusual to go several years without a sighting of the creature, they do come in periodically. The last documented sighting occurred in September, 2002. Over the years it seems the monster has been spotted in all parts of the lake, during all seasons. You can even see people wearing T-shirts and Hats and other merchandise having the Loch Murray Monster displayed.