Tales of the Boojum of the Smoky Mountains vary from source to source.
This is what we believe.
The Boojum was first spotted in North Carolina in the early 1800s, about the time of the Carolina gold rush. Described by some as a Bigfoot mixed with a mountain man, the Boojum was rumored to live in a massive cave within the Smokies. Reaching almost 9 feet tall, he was covered in grey hair with a long grey tail. However, he was not all beast. He wore clothing and had a number of other human-like traits.
Back then, he had an affinity for two things - Pert'nin juice and gems. Legend has it that the Boojum would consume large quantitates of Pert'nin juice (his favorite mountain brew), before venturing out to steal gems from the local miners. He would then return to his cave and fill his empty jugs with his latest loot. Afraid that his gems would be discovered while he was out, the Boojum hid the gem laden jugs all over the mountains. Tales of these hidden jugs quickly spread through the local towns and beyond. People began searching for the gems, descending on the mountains looking to strike it rich.
Many of those people had the misfortune of finding the Boojum himself rather than his gems. He did not take well to this. As more and more of the searchers went missing, less were inclined to take the risk of stealing from the Boojum. The tales faded and the Boojum was once again left to roam his mountains in peace. This is where most of the legends end, but there is much more to the Boojum's story.
Decades later, after many years of hiding, the Boojum has emerged from his cave once again, and just as the trades and tastes of the people of the Smokies have changed over the years, so too has the Boojum. His new passion is beer and his new philosophy is sharing that beer with the people that share his home. So far, the Boojum's appetite for making and drinking beer has only been known to a few, but all that is about to change.
In the spring of 2013, the now founders of Boojum Brewing Company were hiking on Eagle's Nest Mountain in Waynesville, NC. They happened upon a trail of massive footprints along a particularly beautiful creek that lead them to what looked like a growler wedged between two rocks in the creek. Knowing about the Boojum, they were wary of moving closer. As it turned out, their love of beer was greater than their fear of the legendary creature. They quickly crossed the creek, reached for the perfectly chilled jug and investigated it closely. The color was an incredible amber that shone like gold in the sunlight, the aroma was a symphony playing through their noses, and the taste was an incredible balance of malt and hops. The growler was emptied almost as fast as they found it. As the last few drips fell, they noticed a round stone inside. They smashed the jug to reveal a large, uncut emerald with a short inscription. It was a recipe!
Upon their return home, the three immediately got to work recreating the beer they had just discovered. Nearly three weeks later, they had succeeded in brewing the delicious golden liquid. That afternoon, they returned to the spot on Eagle's Nest Mountain where they had happened upon the growler. Sure enough there was another growler where the first had been. Another incredible beer accompanied by a recipe, this one dark, roasty and balanced. They left their own growler in the same spot to repay the brewer and again returned home to recreate the latest recipe. Month after month they discovered and brewed more recipes. After about a year of this, they decided to use the precious stones they had been given to open a brewery so that all the people who lived in and visited the area could enjoy the Boojum's recipes. That day, Boojum Brewing Company was formed.