What is the Jersey Devil and how did it come to be, there are many speculations and story's surrounding the myth, but where did it originate from, and come to be of the story we know today.

Some say it originated from Benjamin Franklin, while others say it was a curse Mrs Leeds put on her child, others say the child is in fact the devils son, I'm curious to see what you think?

Back story

In the 1700s a lady named Mrs Leeds from south Jersey lived in a secluded area known as pine barrens, Mrs Leeds was an outcast of society for all ready having 12 children, back in those days having such a large family was seen as sinful, but I suppose you can say their wasn't really televisions available to amuse themselves, after realising she was pregnant yet again with her thirteenth child, distraught and outraged she cursed the child to be the devils son, one theory says it was so the devil could come and take the child away so she did not have to tend to it.

Know this is where legends took place, on a stormy night Mrs Leeds gave birth to the child, some say the child was born normal, but then took on characteristics, such as, the child grew a large horse like head, with a thick tale, hooves as feet and large bat like wings.

Another tale tells of a young woman who had an encounter with a gypsy who asked for food, with the refusal to help, the gypsy then curses the girls first born son, that he would be born and then become the devil.

Other legends say the child died while others say the baby was thrown away due to birth defects, you could say as it was the 1700s seeing slight birth defeats would cause confusion its not like today where we have technology and knowledge of illnesses.

Another theory says the child was confined due to its appearance until one day they made their escape up the chimney.

As you can see there are lots of theory's surrounding the legend, sighting and story telling has been going on for centuries as it seems to be a well known folk tale of the south, now as I was looking into all of the legends and theory's I did come up with a theory myself, Mrs Leeds was accused of being a witch due to supposably praying to the devil and making a pack to take the child away, now if she was a witch no way on this green earth would she discard the child, the number 13 is a sacred number to all witches the thirteenth child would have been the most precious thing to her as she would of seen the child as a gift from our mother.

Theory two- maybe the child was born with defects and to protect what little dignity Leeds had left with the community she cooked up the story of a devil like child that escaped, but really kept the child hidden from prying eyes , lets just say that the sightings in the woods could have been from the child, which had grown up, due to differences in appearances, people did not understand and ran away when they encountered the child which then started the rumours of a devil like creature, we all know from the witches trials how things can be exaggerated.

Folk people of the town speak of a high-pitched noise emerging from the forest when seeing this supposably jersey devil, what if what they was hearing the child making the noises as a way of trying to communicate with them.

I have to put the reality side of things first like with all my research before jumping straight in thinking it's something spiritual, both sides have to be taken into consideration, but on that note, it didn't stop me jumping in thinking about the paranormal side of things, so here's what I found out, in native American Lenape folklore which originally populated pine barrens believed the jersey devil is there folk tale of the M sing, could the Lenape started the myth?

Another folktale in Scandinavia speak of creatures known as the Myling these are incarnations of the souls of children that are unwanted or children of parents who lacked the means to care for them while alive, it is believed that a child being denied baptism, or a proper burial  will haunt a place where death was likely to befall them.

So my theory was what if the sightings that have been seen are actually apparitions and not actually of a devil, if the child was born with defects their may not be an understanding on their part of what has happened to them, they may not understand that they are dead, I once read somewhere that a spirit can manifest its self into an imagine of how it was perceived by others, think of it this way people manifest on a daily basis (happiness), with you manifesting that kind of energy that happiness does follow you around (the saying its going to be a good day subconsciously your manifesting that) now what if this spirit shows its self in this form because it knows it's the only way to be noticed it's the only way it knows how to interact with others just maybe the jersey devil is in fact not the devil but a spirit trying to find its family.

Speaking of the ghost side of things there was a theory that Benjamin Franklin was the culprit of starting the jersey devil tale, quick back story,

The land was inherited by Leeds son and family, Titan Leeds son of Daniel Leeds also inherited his fathers almanac business which used astrology contents to predict future events, Benjamin Franklin also used astrology, franklin and titan had a love hate relationship, so one day Franklin decided to play a joke on titan stating he had predicted titans death, outraged with the prediction franklin gave, titan published a public admonition saying Franklin was a fool and liar, Franklin then decided to reply back to this remark that Leeds had died with the earlier prediction and is in fact writing his almanacs as a ghost resurrected from the grave.

They say this local folktale legend of Leeds devil may have originated from this ordeal.


Either way with all this information and story telling no one will ever know the truth, do I think the jersey devil is real, well truthfully, I have no idea maybe it was just a bed time story to tell kids to behave themselves, do I think it's the actual devil my answer well no I think it's a spirit trying to find its way home so it can finally rest in peace.