Legend of the Albatwitch


Local legends in the area of Columbia, Pennsylvania speak of a creature called an “albatwitch.” 

The albatwitch is a small (about 4 feet tall), manlike creature which supposedly lived in wooded areas. 

Their main area of residence seemed to be near Chickies Rock, a heavily wooded area along the banks of the Susquehanna River about a mile or two north of town. 

Albatwitches were also reported from wooded areas all along the river’s shore.

The creatures are named for a habit which they possess. Their bizarre common name is short for “apple-snitch”, as they are reputed to have a taste for apples. Legends speak of how the albatwitches would oftentimes steal apples from picnickers, occasionally even throwing them at the startled people. Legends also record that the creatures often sat in trees, coming down only to find food.

Legend also says that the albatwitches either became extinct or were driven nearly into extinction in the later years of the nineteenth century. Chickies Rock, where the creatures supposedly lived, does have a tradition of strange sights and sounds – in the 1950s and 1970s, a man like figure was seen several times, and local legends also speak of sounds like the crack of a whip heard in the woods at night. One can only wonder if these could be connected with the albatwitch.

Whether these stories are connected or not, several sightings of Bigfoot-types have been recorded from this area. A vague report concerning the sighting of a hairy humanoid came from Lancaster in 1973. Lancaster is a scant 10 miles east of Columbia. Another came from the town of North Annville (about 20 miles to the north) in the same year. In addition, a number of reports have surfaced out of neighboring York County.

Also, some sources say that the Susquehannocks, like many Indian tribes, had a belief in an apelike monster, and sometimes depicted it on their war-shields. The Susquehannocks were a local tribe – coincidentally, major evidences of their civilization (ruins of a village and burial grounds) were found at the base of Chickies Rock. 

Source: Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization 2000


Possible Albatwitch Sightings


Lancaster County

I had a possible sighting of an Albatwitch here in 2002


Lancaster County

Three possible sightings of what may have been an Albatwitch. One in 2000, in 2012, and in 2014.  


York County

Possible Albatwitch in tree behind the witness'es home in 1996. Said it looked like a flying monkey, saw yellow eyes and moved quickly when a flashlight was shined on it.

Possible Albatwitch Sightings


Harvey's Lake, PA

Witness reported what appeared to be a monkey with yellow eyes in a tree.


Windsor, PA

Witness and his brother saw what they believed to be an Albatwitch and saw it again 30 years later. Witness didn't give an exact location only that it was in the Windsor, PA area. I can't remember if he described it as having yellow eyes or white eyes. I have no contact information on the witness but gave him mine so hoping he contacts me for more information.


Lancaster County

In the 1980's  a 10 year old boy and his older brother were hiking in the woods. The young boy was pinned against a tree and was face to face with what he says was a Bigfoot.  His older brother yelled and the creature ran off