Mind Games: Loch Ness Monster

Rumors of an incredible monster that lives in the waters of Loch Ness, appeared in the 1930s after the publication of an article by a London correspondent from Milan Gasparini. In 1959, the journalist admitted that he wrote this story because of the scant news agenda. He got into the hands of the story of a Scottish fisherman who fished fancy fish from the water. However, to make this a sensation was problematic, and then Gasparini somewhat embellished the incident, inventing his own personal monster. The editor clung to the idea and told the reporter to compose a plausible column containing the "testimonies" of eyewitnesses.

A couple of days after the publication, the story was sold out in other newspapers: the British editions took to the fabrication and spread the Italian story. History is overgrown with new and incredible details. The monster even appeared affectionate nickname: Nessie. His body was said to be about 25 feet long and 4 feet high. According to Gasparini, he watched how the press "turns his little monster into a giant." In addition to describing an unknown creature, his sketches and “photographs” also appeared. Legend was born.

The legend of Nessie was born due to the lack of sensational news.

However, Gasparini is not the only one who claims to be the creator of Nessi: British writer Digby Garatey claimed that he and his friends composed a legend during the years of underworking as an advertising agent. According to him, the owners of local hotels turned to him with a request to help the business, which suffered losses due to the construction of a large industrial plant near the lake. The prototype of the Loch Ness monster in this case was a creature from Okanagan Lake.

One way or another, the myth was created, and those who wanted to believe were looking for evidence. According to the ancient Scottish beliefs, in the waters of Loch Ness really lived a giant monster. In 1933, the Daily Mail newspaper commissioned the author Marmaduke Wetherella to go to the neighborhood in search of Nessi. Of course, he did not find any monster, but he did not return empty-handed: the man reported that he stumbled across the tracks that belonged to a giant creature along the shore of the lake. Researchers from the Museum of Natural History studied the images and concluded that the prints were made using a dried hippo's hoof.

A few months later, the public was presented with really weighty evidence: pictures of the monster itself. Their author was a respected British surgeon, Colonel Robert Wilson. He stated that he was driving past the northern shore of the lake on April 19, 1934, and noticed a strange movement in the water. By a miraculous coincidence, Wilson had a camera with him, so he quickly stopped the car and photographed the monster. The picture shows the upper body with a long neck. The photo became a real sensation: for decades it was considered an irrefutable evidence of the existence of Nessie. In the people it was called simply “Surgeon's snapshot”.


Wilson's most famous shot

Only in 1984 a detailed image analysis was carried out. The report on behalf of Stuart Campbell was published in the British Journal of Photography. Campbell concluded that the size of the object was too small - the visible part of the body did not exceed three feet in length, and, most likely, it was just an otter. He also suggested that Dr. Wilson, of course, understood that he was an ordinary water animal in the photo, and deliberately let in smoke.

The 1934 Nessie snapshot was considered the main evidence.

And 10 years later, in 1994, another participant in the conspiracy Christian Sparling confessed before his death that in fact in the photo was a toy submarine, to which they attached the top in the form of a sea serpent. Sparling also exposed other swindlers, pointing to Dr. Wilson himself and that same journalist Wetherell (who was Christian's stepfather). He allegedly came up with the whole idea and chose Wilson as the bearer of the photo, as the doctor was a famous person with a good credit of trust in society. Weatherell allegedly wanted to shut up all the skeptics who subjected him to public humiliation after exposing images with prints.

However, wanting to believe in the existence of Nessie is not diminished. In 1957, a local resident, Constance White, published a whole book with stories of those who allegedly saw the monster. All of them described the creature in approximately the same way: a long, large body, an elongated neck, and a small head.

Over the years, researchers and those who wanted to get to the bottom of the truth organized expeditions to the lake with the latest equipment at that time. In 1934, Edward Mountain sponsored a trip in which twenty participants watched the water surface with cameras and binoculars for 5 weeks. The photos obtained as a result were useless: there was no Nessie on them.

In the 60s, the lake was studied not only with photographic, but also with sonar equipment. During the expedition of Gordon Tucker, the sonar was installed on one of the shores of the lake and directed in the opposite direction. In this way, an acoustic grid was created, through which no object could get unnoticed. And although some strange and uncharacteristic testimony was obtained, it did not really prove anything. Nessie tried to photograph from the air, to detect with the aid of the sonar, not counting the numerous surveys from the shore, but every time the appearance of another sensation, skeptics exposed her.

In 2016, a group of British enthusiasts conducted a study of the lake bottom using a special robot. According to one version, the monster has a shelter - a crevice in the depths of the waters where it is hidden. Having studied the relief of the bottom, the scientists came to the conclusion that there were no cavities or tunnels in Loch Ness, and therefore there was no place for the creature to hide.

The myth of Nessie brings the treasury of Scotland about 25 million pounds a year

In 2009, the media replicated a picture taken by a Google satellite in the Loch Ness area: it clearly shows a certain creature, resembling a whale in shape, which has a tail and a pair of large fins. The last photo of the mysterious Nessie was a snapshot of amateur photographer Ian Bremner, dated last year. Bremner, who looked at the local beauty, noticed a strange creature in the water, and, having shown a film, he decided that it most resembled that Scottish monster. The image was made in good resolution: it captures a long creature that resembles a fat snake. However, in another version, it is just a flock of seals frolicking in the water.


Bremner shot

And although the legend of Nessie causes great doubts among the scientific community and just a sensible public, Lake Loch continues to attract tourists and onlookers. In 2014, Scotland tried to calculate how much money the region makes only on the myth of the sea monster. The director of Loch Ness Marketing, Willie Cameron, said that about a million people come to the lake every year, and this brings the treasury about £ 25 million. According to his calculations, 85% of tourists are attracted precisely by the legend of Nessie.

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