Episode 66: Bigfoot: The Case for the Missing Link

Is there any more well known cryptid in modern lore than Bigfoot? The elusive forest dweller must have one incredible agent. Featured on multiple television programs, Internet channels, and countless books; Bigfoots are an odd kind of celebrity. For starters, the paparazzi cannot keep up with them, despite the best efforts of enthusiast the world over we have yet to find definitive proof of the existence of these mysterious bipedal behemoths.  Also they keep getting booked on network TV and failing to show up for their cameo appearances. Their reluctance to engage with their adoring public makes Woody Allen’s refusal to attend the Oscars seem downright congenial. Join us this week as we explore the history of Bigfoot, from famous sightings, to contested evidence; from mythical origins, to scientific conjecture. We’ll also be taking a look at the cultural significance of the idea of the “missing link.” We’ll be discussing Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, along with the man who aimed to ‘prove it’ once and for all, Charles Dawson. His infamous Piltdown Man created mysteries and legends that remain to this day. We’ll conclude by taking an in-depth look at the Scope’s Monkey Trial. The first, but certainly not the last, legal battle over evolution’s place in the American classroom, in which rhetorical titans Clarence Darrow and William Jennings Bryan started an argument we still can’t seem to settle.

Listen on iTunes

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Scopes Trial Footage – Historic Films

Inherit The Wind (1960) – Trial Scene

Sources:

Federal Supremacy vs. States’ Rights – The North American Law Center

ACLU History | American Civil Liberties Union

The Bill of Rights: A Brief History | American Civil Liberties Union

The American Experience – Monkey Trial – PBS

Scopes Trial Documentary

The Clarence Darrow Collection

Scopes Trial Home Page – UMKC School of Law

Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America’s Continuing Debate Over Science and Religion by Edward Larson

Memoirs of William Jennings Bryan

The Complete Scopes Trial Transcript

Tennesse Anti-evolution Statute – The Butler Act – UMKC School of Law

On the Origin of a Theory – Smithsonian Magazine

Piltdown Man, Paleoanthropology’s April Fool’s – Smithsonian Magazine

Piltdown Man: Britain’s Greatest Hoax – BBC

Piltdown Man: The Great English Mystery Story – Keith Stewart Thomson – American Scientist

Paleontology’s Most Famous Missing Links – Popular Science

Ten Fossils that Trace the Story of Human Origins – NBC News

What Darwin Didn’t Know – Smithsonian Magazine

The Evolution of Charles Darwin – Smithsonian Magazine

New genetic and morphological evidence suggests a single hoaxer created ‘Piltdown man’

Macleans April 1, 1929

Noticias de Nutka By Monzino Jose Mariano

Americans find Body of Bigfoot – BBC News

“The Origin of the Sasquatch” by Dr. Grover Krantz

The Origin of the Bigfoot Legend

“In Search Of” Bigfoot

I Fought The Apemen of St Helens

Amateur versus professional: the search for Bigfoot – Brian Regal

Patterson-Gimlin Footage Stabilized

Patterson-Gimlin Footage -The Final Word

Is It Legal to Kill Bigfoot in Texas? | StateImpact Texas

Man admits: I was ‘Bigfoot’

The Making of Bigfoot: The Inside Story: Greg Long

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