Was Sasquatch Mask Based on a Sighting?
Wednesday, September 21 2005 @ 10:05 AM PDT
Since bringing to light the Chehalis First Nations (British Columbia) sasquatch mask, seen here, for my Vancouver Museum exhibit last year, I have wondered as to the source of the carver's inspiration. His name was Ambrose Point and he carved the mask around 1937.
He gave it to John W. Burns, a teacher on the Chehalis Reservation, who donated it to the Vancouver Museum in 1938. Burns heard many stories of the sasquatch from the Chehalis people and wrote articles on the information he gathered. In two different articles published by McLeans magazine (1929) and Liberty magazine (1954), he references a sasquatch sighting by William Point, and perhaps herein lies the answer. The two were probably related and Ambrose used information provided to him by William.
The mask intrigues me from yet another angle. It is not painted and the facial features reflect those reported in other sasquatch sightings, especially the wide, flat nose and space between the nose and the mouth. We see much the same features in the creature filmed by Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin in 1967. Point certainly did not have this resource for inspiration back in the 1930s.