Place item was collected
Logan, Utah. Collector's Apartment.
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
Garrett is my oldest brother, is 31, and currently lives in Chicago with his wife. Garrett grew up in the little town of Orangeville, Utah but our family moved to Ferron when he was 17 and has since called Ferron home. Garrett was always the taunting older brother, relentlessly teasing us younger siblings. He was often the one to get in trouble first but he was also the one who was almost always guilty. Growing up he paid special attention to artistic detail and dreamed of designing cars. Garrett pursued his dream and graduated from the Art Center in Pasadena, California with a Masters in Car Design. He now works in Chicago for RadioFlyer toy company as one of their top toy designers. Garrett is passionate about anything artistic, and is extremely talented in painting, sculpting, drawing, and designing.
I interviewed Garrett over the phone since he lives in Chicago. He was out shopping for the night and could be a little distracted when it came to remembering the whole story. He remembers hearing the story first in his geography class in junior high school. His teacher, Mr. Durrant, is legendary himself because of the stories he told the students. Most of them were local legends, since Mr. Durrant had grown up in the area. He was an interactive teacher and while Garrett remembers these stories, he couldn’t tell me one thing her learned about geography. Garrett said the legend originated in the city of Orangeville, the city our family had been living in. After learning this story, he passed it onto his younger siblings, and relentlessly haunted us with it. If he was babysitting, it was a story he’d turn to either entertain or scare. It was most appropriately told while outside, either camping or playing night games. Often he would tell it in the moment right when being chased by a dog or some kind of animal that could closely resemble a goat. Needless to say, this story kept me up many nights. We never really questioned him, because of course he was the older brother and had heard this from one of his teachers. Garrett never really believed the story, especially since he had never had his own personal experience with it, but it never stopped him from retelling it. Orangeville is a little town, with less than 2000 people and has many ghost and haunting stories. The locals even do a ghost tour around town during Halloween. The cemetery was a nice and well-kept location but there was an old pioneer home or shed behind it. This is where it is believed that Goat Boy lived. Driving passed the cemetery and finding the shed was always something kids would do, hoping to see and provoke Goat Boy. The shed was most likely a location of legend-tripping, but Garrett doesn’t remember ever going, only driving by it. He just remembers looking at it and sharing the story. Today the story is only really shared when we talk about our original hometown of Orangeville, or haunting stories around the county.
Back in Orangeville, a long time ago, there was a little baby who was abandoned by his parents on a goat farm. No one really knows why they left him, other than they didn’t want him. Must have been an ugly kid. The goat farmer found the boy but couldn’t take care of him, so he left him to live with the goats. The boy grew up with the goats but started changing as he got older. I don’t think he ever learned to speak, just make “baaaaaing” noises like the goats. He started to get really hairy, grow hooves in place of his feet. And pretty soon all that was human was his face. [pause] I’m pretty sure his eyes were even a bright yellow, glowy color. The boy outlived the old goat farmer and all the goats and lived in the old shed near the cemetery. There’s an old shed, it’s pretty messed up back in the trees that he lives in. If you’re out in the cemetery at night and see yellow eyes, you better run because Goat Boy will be after you. [big sigh] No one really knows why, but he especially loves to catch little girls and boys. [makes sign noise and blows through his mouth] I really can’t remember why, something creepy.
Garrett told the legend with a mild tone of voice but still paused at different spots for effect. It was clear that he didn’t expect me to believe it, as compared to when he told it when I was younger. He couldn’t remember all of the facts, like why the parents left the boy or why he especially went after little kids, but he seemed to put it together in a way that made sense to him. When he would tell others, especially his siblings when we were little, his voice would get really quiet and conspiratorial. His tone was more confident, as if to prove he knew what he was talking about. He would make the “baaing” noise as well as widen his eyes at the yellow, eyes part. There were times he would add in that Goat Boy especially liked to attack little girls, and then would insert mine or my friend’s names into the story.
Introduction to Folklore/English 2210
Dr. Lynne McNeill
Semester and year
G7: Supernatural or Supernormal Characters or Creatures
Teichert, Elise, "Goat Boy Legend" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 113.