FBI Reveals Investigation Of Bigfoot In The 1970s, Documents Finally Made Public — Here’s What They Found

In 1976, the Federal Bureau of Investigation examined the question of whether or not Bigfoot existed, scrutinizing hair and tissue samples supposedly belonging to the mysterious being.

An actor wears a Bigfoot costume.
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In 1976, the Federal Bureau of Investigation examined the question of whether or not Bigfoot existed, scrutinizing hair and tissue samples supposedly belonging to the mysterious being.

Bigfoot, sometimes called “Sasquatch,” is a giant, shaggy creature who walks upright like a human being but looks like a huge gorilla. Sightings of the creature, usually occurring in wooded areas of the Pacific Northwest, have been reported as far back as the 1950s. Yet, they really took off following the 1967 appearance of a brief, 8mm film clip that purportedly showed, as Live Science describes, a “dark, man-sized and man-shaped figure striding through a clearing.” The film remains the “best evidence” that Bigfoot actually exists but is also widely believed to be a hoax.

Hoax or not, what has been little-known about Bigfoot until now is that the Federal Bureau of Investigation found the Bigfoot question worth investigating, at least to some extent. On Wednesday, the FBI finally confirmed 43 years after the fact, that it had indeed looked into the question of Bigfoot’s existence, releasing a 22-page cache of documents related to the Bigfoot probe, as ABC News reported.

As might be expected, the FBI investigation failed to confirm the existence of Bigfoot. However, the Oregon man who sparked the FBI probe, Bigfoot enthusiast Peter Byrne, even today at the age of 93 told NBC News that he has not given up on his quest to prove that Bigfoot — as well as other similar creatures such as the legendary Yeti, or “Abominable Snowman,” of the Himalayas — are the real deal.

“It’s a great challenge,” Byrne told NBC.

It was in 1976 that Byrne sent the FBI hair and tissue samples that he believed originated from the mysterious, giant creature after reading a report that the Bureau had already secretly run tests on supposed Bigfoot samples, according to a Yahoo! News report.

The FBI denied that it had ever conducted such tests. Still, in accommodating fashion, the agency told Byrne that he could send any other samples along, and they would, after all, test them to see if they came from some unknown source.

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In his 1976 letter to the FBI, Byrne wrote, “We do not often come across hair which we are unable to identify and the hair that we have now, about 15 hairs attached to a tiny piece of skin, is the first that we have obtained in six years which we feel may be of importance,” as quoted by The New York Post.

According to the newly-released FBI documents, bureau scientists did, as promised, test the samples and concluded that they came from an animal belonging to “the deer family,” as The Hill reported.

The FBI has posted digital copies online of the 22 pages in its now-public Bigfoot file, and they can be viewed in full via the Vault.FBI.gov site.