We’ve all seen movies or read about werewolves and there have been numerous books and documentaries about “feral children” which explore where the ideas of these folkloric creatures come from. It is fascinating that from the ancient legends of Romulus and Remus, who were said to have been raised by wolves; to the werewolf boy of Moscow in 2007, (who escaped from police and ran snarling through the streets of Moscow), very little is actually known about people raised by, or said to have been raised by animals. One of the most well-regarded cases of wolf-children was found to be a fraud and so scientists have been at a loss as to explaining what may be the causes and conditions leading to “feral humans”. Something that does seem slightly strange is how many of these cases revolve around wolves. Yes, there are some cases of monkeys, dogs and even an ostrich seemingly helping to raise an abandoned child but in the majority of alleged cases it is the wolf that takes over the roll as parent. In 1922 in Victoria, British Columbia it seems that one such “wolf-man” was discovered. The report is brief and there seems to have been little follow up on the case.
Victoria, B. C. A strange wolf-man has been discovered living with the Hesqualt, Indians on the west coast of Vancouver Island, B. C, Canada. So isolated is this island that no effort has been made to give scientific attention to this strange creature till quite recently.
The wolf-man is called Kilm-ith-ka, which means wolf-man in the Indian tongue. He is a wolf in all except form and is said to be about seventy years old. He resembles an old man walking on his hands and feet; he has never walked after the human fashion. He cannot” make any human sound, but growls like a wolf. He eats like one and where human beings have eye teeth he has canine fangs.
When the wolf-man sits erect he is four feet and a half-inch tall. He subsists on raw or cooked meat and lives in a kennel in the rear of the house of a keeper appointed by the tribe. The keeper feeds him and keeps clothes on him as much as possible, and except for occasional disrobings, Kilm-ith-ka is fairly tractable and accepts semidomestication which is about his only human trait.
The ethnologist who Investigated the man learned from the Indians that in the days when the wolf-man was born wolves were very plentiful on the coast and at times attacked people. Whether this is the cause of the man’s animal-like state the fact remains that Kilm-ith-ka is a wolf in everything except form.
He is regarded with great awe by his tribesmen, a common thing among primitive people, who very often venerate any human being different from the ordinary.