Thomas Baker Slick, Jr. was born in the town of Clarion, Pennsylvania on May 6, 1916 to one of the most famous independent oil operators in the Southwest, Thomas Slick, Sr. and his wife Berenice Slick. When Tom Slick, Sr. died in 1930 he left his children approximately 15 million dollars, of which Tom Slick, Jr. used this portion of the wealth to further is education and later support activity in a variety of fields including scientific research, oil drilling, cattle breeding, exploration and collections of modern art.
When Slick was twelve his family moved from San Antonio, Texas to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Slick was a teenager living with his widowed mother’s new husband, Charles Urschel, when on July 22, 1933, Machine Gun Kelly kidnapped Urschel. The kidnapping made Machine Gun Kelly a household name, and his capture, after Urschel was released, was national news. The Urschel kidnapping would have mush to do with Slick’s publicity shy nature and the way in which he dealt with his public image during the years of his cryptozoological pursuits.
During the time of the kidnapping Slick was attending Phillips Exeter Academy and graduated in 1934. In 1938 he earned a premedical degree in biology from Yale University and he would later take graduate courses at both Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During the first part of World War II Slick was a “dollar a year” man for the War Production Board in Washington and a cargo officer in Chile for the Board of Economic Warfare, he later served with the US Navy in the Pacific Ocean and Japan.
In 1957 Slick traveled to Nepal, where he investigated reports of the legendary Yeti. He trekked into the mountains himself and located fifteen self identified eye witnesses and showed each of them a series of twenty photographs of animals that scientists had said might be confused with Yetis. Tom Slick built an identikit of the creature’s appearance and while others found footprints in the show on that expedition he and his Sherpa’s found Yeti tracks in the mud. Photographs of Slick’s tracks show it to be similar to the print found by Sir Eric Shipton in 1951.
In 1958 Tom Slick sponsored the now famous Slick-Johnson Snowman Expeditions which produced more evidence of the Yeti’s existence. It was during this expedition that Slick also created his ground breaking theory that more than one type of Yeti may be alive in the area, not just the tall version but a shorter version which may live in the more tropical valleys.
Slick investigated other unknown creatures besides the Yeti as well, including Alaska’s Iliamna Lake Monsters and California’s Trinity Alps Giant Salamanders. In 1960 he launched the Pacific Northwest Expedition in search of Bigfoot, this expedition remains one of the best funded of all hairy hominoid hunts to date and included noted Bigfooters like Rene Dahinden, John Green, Bob Titmus and Ivan T. Sanderson. Before his death, in a tragic and mysterious mid air plane explosion over Montana in 1962, Slick also funded cryptozoological expeditions that sought the Orang Pendek as well as other unknown animals. Today Tom Slick, Jr. is remembered as an inventor, innovator and successful oil and beef businessman but is perhaps most loved for his contributions to cryptozoological expeditions was well as his grounded and thoughtful demeanor.
Quick Info: (where applicable)
Date of Birth: May 6, 1916
Birthplace: Clarion, Pennsylvania, United States of America
Current Location: NA
• The Last Great Hope (1951)
• Permanent Peace: A Check and Balance Plan (1958)
Schooling and/or Degrees:
• Premedical Degree – biology – Yale University
• Graduate courses – Harvard University
• Graduate courses – Massachusetts Institute of Technology
• Honorary doctor of science degree - Trinity University
• Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research (founder)
• Institute of Inventive Research (founder)
• The Southwest Research Institute (founder)
• The Southwest Agricultural Institute (founder)
• Mind Science Foundation (founder)
• Human Progress Foundation (founder)
• Texas Research Foundation (trustee)
• Worchester Foundation for Experimental Biology (trustee)
• Stanford Research Institute (trustee)
• Trinity University (trustee)
• San Antonio Medical Foundation (trustee)
• United World Federalists (member)
• National Planning Association (member)
• American Association for the Advancement of Science (member)
• Explorers Club (member)