The Weird Story Of How Jimmy Stewart Became A Yeti Smuggler

We all remember Jimmy Stewart from his various roles as a levelheaded man of integrity who always stood for what is right, like in "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington," or an earnest father who learns to value what's really important, like in "It's a Wonderful Life." And according to History Net, Stewart was just as upstanding in real life as he was on screen. He served as a bomber pilot in World War II, and was even awarded a medal by the French air force for his help liberating the country from the Nazi war machine.

But as we also know, actors can be really weird people, and Jimmy Stewart was no exception. In fact, he had his dark side. You might be surprised that he even moonlighted as a smugger of some pretty rare contraband. It wasn't cocaine or guns that he snuck across national borders, but the hand of a supposed Yeti. But did Jimmy Stewart prove the existence of the fabled abominable snowman? Let's take a look into his days as a smuggler and see.

Jimmy Stewart's smuggled Yeti hand was a fake

Altas Obscura notes that in 1957, a Texas oil man named Tom Slick (no joke, that was really his name) went traipsing through Nepal in search of proof of the mythical creature known as the Yeti, which was said to inhabit the region's mountains. He financed the purchase of a finger and some skin from the monks at the Pangboche monastery. They charged visitors a fee to see the bones and other relics as a means of financing the monastery's upkeep. Representatives of Slick's spirited the finger away to Calcutta, India, where Stewart agreed to smuggle it to England hidden in the luggage of his wife Gloria (pictured with Stewart above), hidden among her more delicate garments.

Despite the ingenious hiding spot, upon their arrival in London, they received a visit from British customs officers. The authorities recovered the finger and had it examined by experts. It was found to be a human hand, most likely that of a young woman. So no, Jimmy Stewart didn't bring back proof of the existence of Bigfoot or one of his cryptid cousins. He merely lived a story outrageous enough for one of his classic exploits on the silver screen.