Algiers is one of the oldest neighborhood in New Orleans, Louisiana. The ward is on the National Register of Historic Places since 1978 and a designated local historic district since 1994. The area was popular for jazz music, its many churches, libraries, and for the infamous Hurricane Katrina. It also became popular in the 1930s for reports of the Devil Man of Algiers.
In 1938, reports were made of a man terrorizing couples in the city. When asked to describe the man, while some details were disputed, one thing remained the same- that he was a devil. He was described as having eyes like a chicken, described as being huge and almost cartoonish, bright pink star shaped ears, long black horns, and that he rode on the air. Some reports even indicated that he shape shifted while announcing himself as the Devil.
He was commonly reported terrorizing bars, insulting women, and particularly focusing his efforts on local couples. While he was never connected or convicted of any actual deaths in the community, he was reported to instill a sense of oncoming death or dread in people who interacted with him. People reported seeing their lives flash before their eyes. They were terrorized by nightmares long after their interactions had taken place, often waking up covered in sweat, short of breath, and not easily consoled.
One particularly spine chilling story was reported by one young couple, which made widespread news and brought the devil man even more fame. As they were traveling home one evening, a strange person motioned for them to stop. They slowed the car and rolled down the window. The man asked for a ride to a nearby town. Feeling uncomfortable, the couple refused and continued on their way.
They drove for several miles at a normal speed on the highway. Incredibly, they witnessed the same man, walking down the road. Feeling the hairs on their arms raise, they looked at each other and silently continued on their way. After ten more minutes, the couple was shocked and horrified to see the man again walking down the road. Again, the man motioned for them to stop and requested a ride. Refusing again, the couple sped off down the road.
When they saw the man again, he did not request another ride, but did change into the Devil before their eyes. They sped off yet another time before they were terrorized again by the sight of the man, this time riding a brown horse. Going straight to the police station, the couple reported the events.
When police went to investigate, they saw the same man and requested he stop. When he didn’t, the police fired shots at the man, which appeared to strike him. The man jumped off the horse and returned the bullets to the police, clutched in his hairy hands, while laughing. He was arrested and brought to jail.
The devil man continued to appear in bars in Louisiana to harass women and couples, while partying. Reports continued, even while the original man, described as the Devil, was still locked up in jail. Reporters who interviewed the man claim that he told them that it was his spirit, who would continue to terrorize Algiers until his release, citing continuing poor treatment by police.