HAUNTED MICHIGAN

(Discussion Board Files courtesy of Matt Muller)

 

 

Subject: Re: Michigan hauntings?

From: ketchmark.1@postbox.acs.ohio-state.edu (Kelley Ketchmark)

Date: Mon, 1 May 1995 22:20:50 GMT

Message-ID: <ketchmark.1.5.2FA55EC2@postbox.acs.ohio-state.edu>

 

hello all.

 

I am not from Michigan, but from Toledo, OH.  Pretty much the same thing.

I  have a question about a house on route 223 which stretches from Lambertville,

MI all the way to Devil's Lake and beyond (where we have a cottage)

Wait, the road stretches that far, not the house.  :-)

The house lies next to the Drigg's Dairy Farms near Palmyra.  My sister and I

always used to call it the "haunted House" every weekend when we drove past

to go to and from the lake all summer long.  It looks very eerie, and is always

boarded up, but I never knew anything about it.

Later, I heard of stories from people from Adrian college who have proof that

it is haunted, but I can't remember many specifics.  Does anyone on this

group know what I am talking about?

 

see you,

Kelley

 

 

Subject: Isle Royale (Michigan Haunting)

From: ellisjg@bcvms.bc.edu

Date: 11 May 95 23:08:50 EDT

Message-ID: <1995May11.230850.1@bcvms.bc.edu>

 

A while back, I posted a story under "Re: Michigan Hauntings" about the ghostly crying of children on Isle Royale.  Since then, I have seen similar stories connected to other islands in the Midwest (Apostle Islands?) and interestingly enough, also associated with the Ojibwa Indians.  My last story told how the Ojibwa abandoned the island after being tricked into feasting on the dead  bodies of their children by a clan of shamans who could transform themselves into bears.  It is said the Indians were driven off the island by the ghostly sound of crying coming from the woods.  They burned the shamans at the stake, but the crying continues...some say to this day.  The island lay abandoned for many years, devoid of human habitation until the white man came to the Great Lakes....

 

The first Europeans to come to Lake Superior were the French Voyageurs, fur trappers and traders who operated out of Quebec but traveled far afield in  their birch bark canoes and lived among the Indians with whom they hunted and bartered.  As the trade was established, some trappers set up outposts in the wilderness to provide the Indians with easier access to the pots, pans, blankets, guns and other European goods for which they supplied vast quantities of beaver pelts.  One such trader named Philipe built a trading post on Isle Royale, despite the warnings of his Indian friends.  And why not?  The island was in an excellent location for attracting the Indians as they returned from their winter hunting grounds, laden with furs and eager to re supply

themselves.  What were these superstitious stories in comparison with the lure of wealth and success?  In a few years, Philipe's venture was a marked success and he was never bothered by the stories the Indians told.  The Ojibwa were more than willing to visit their French friend, but strangely enough, they refused to inhabit the island, preferring to set up camp on the mainland.

 

Philipe's new found wealth enabled him to hire an old trapping friend as an assistant and to marry a beautiful woman named Marie from Quebec.  That summer was idyllic, passed in joy amongst his Ojibwa friends, his old trapping buddy Jaques and his new bride.   By the fall, Marie had given birth to a fine healthy boy..

 

But then the winter came and the Indians departed for their hunting grounds.  Philipe, Marie and Jaques were left alone on the island.  That winter was especially severe, the wind blowing off Lake Superior was cutting and the snow piled high.  Most of the time, the little family and the assistant were forced to stay inside their tiny cabin, huddled against the fire.  As the days passed by in isolation and suffocating  familiarity, relations within the group began to sour.  Philipe's old friend, Jaques grew restless, sullen and foul tempered. 

 

What was it that finally pushed Jaques over the edge?  Was it cabin fever? The isolation and boredom of sheltering through a long bitter winter has driven many men to the brink.  But Jaques was an old fur trapper, he had  been through this before.  Was it lust?  The combination of Marie's beauty and constant closeness played constantly on Jaques mine.  At first, he did his

best to fight his urges.  He spent a lot of time chopping wood, attacking the wood pile with manic energy.  But then one day, Philipe informed his wife and assistant that he would be gone for a few days.  They were nearly out of food, and cold or not, he would have to go hunting.  Marie begged him not to go, fearing being alone with Jaques.  But Philipe reassured her "Mon Dieu,

Marie, Jaques is an old friend.  He will let no harm come to you"  Having no evil in his own heart, Philipe could not recognize it in others.  He grabbed one of the muskets from the shelf, powder and provisions and set off into the woods.

For the first day, Jaques stood in the cold wielding his ax at the wood pile. But he had only one thought in his mind.  She was there.  So close... He walked into the cabin and found Marie peeling the last of their potatoes.  She recognized the evil intent in Jaques eyes.  As Jaques approached her with his forgotten ax in one hand and his other hand extended in a grasping

claw, Marie screamed in fear...... (To be continued)

Subject: Isle Royale (Part 2)

From: ellisjg@bcvms.bc.edu

Date: 11 May 95 23:57:40 EDT

Message-ID: <1995May11.235740.1@bcvms.bc.edu>

 

PART TWO

 

Marie screamed as Jaques stumbled towards her, a look of wild lust in his  eyes.  She slashed the air before her with the little kitchen knife, catching Jaques cheek leaving a large red gash.  The baby, lying nearby in its crib, began to wail.  Jaques swore and and wiped the blood trickling from his face.  His burning lust turned into raging fury.  He couldn't hear anything but the sound of his heart beating, pounding, throbbing in his head.  He looked down at the ax in his hand...

 

Jaques felt like he was going to faint.   His head was spinning and confused. He gazed down at what he had done, and sobbed in horror.  The ax lay broken and bloody on the floor near the body of the young woman he had murdered. As realization of what had happened came flooding into his tormented mind, the young fur trapper let out a long, low moan that climbed into a piercing wail, then collapsed into spurts of uncontrolled sobbing.  "What have I done? What

have I done?"  Guilt swept over him like a dark cloud and then was gone, replaced by a more primal instinct.  "Philipe will kill me for what I have done" he thought.  Jaques sheer will to survive took over, directed him to the shelf where the muskets were kept.  Like a man in a trance, he loaded the gun, placed a chair in front of the door, sat and waited like he had done a  hundred times before when stalking deer or bear.  He sat motionless, musket pointed at the door, his face an expressionless mask throughout the night. He could not hear the crying of the young baby in its crib.  All he could hear were the thoughts screaming in his head "Philipe will kill me for what I  have done" 

 

Philipe returned through the snow with a brace of geese in one hand and  musket in the other.  From outside the cabin, he could hear the sound of his child crying.  "Maire!  Marie!  I'm home" he called.  No answer, only the  wailing of the infant.  "Marie?..." he asked as he set the musket leaning  against the cabin wall and pushed open the door.  There was a flash, an  explosion then....death.  Philipe fell backward, heavily into the snowy yard.

 

Jaques sat gazing out of the open door of the cabin for a long time, not daring to move, not daring to think.  Gradually, the sound of his heart, the sound of his thoughts grew quiet.  Revulsion, regret and guilt spread through him like nausea.  He began to sob.  Then, for the first time he heard the pitiful sounds of the child, hoarse with crying.  That sound pulled him from

his trance, and summoned him to the child's crib.  He spoke soothingly to the child.  He picked it up and held it, caressed it, consoled it.  But it was beyond consoling.  He sat back in the chair, rocking back and forth with the child pressed tightly to the buckskin on his chest.  "Shush, shhhh, now my little one.  Shhhh," he whispered quietly.  The sound of the baby's cries seemed to grow louder, to echo in his head, to fill his skull with pity, to attack his soul with accusations.  "Shhhh, little one, shhhhhh" he hissed, holding the child tighter and rocking agitatedly.  Then, silence.  The baby lay limp, blue and cold in his arms.  The tears flowed freely down his face, his mouth uttering incomprehensible sounds of sorrow and repentance. 

 

As time passed, Jaques' survival instincts forced him to act.  The Ojibwa would return soon, the winter was almost over.  He buried the bodies of the little family under the wood pile.  When the Ojibwa did return, Jaques greeted them with a broad smile.  He explained how Philipe had taken his family back to Quebec to brave the winter, how he had left him here to run the outpost in

his absence.  The Ojibwa began to unload their furs and to barter for the trade goods.  Then Jaques heard it.....quietly at first, but growing in volume. The  sound of crying coming from the woods.  The sound of wails, like a hundred tiny cries floating in the air all around him, seeping into his head.  The Indians were talking to him, but he couldn't hear.  He heard nothing but the cries. The Indians were taken aback by the fur trappers sudden change in demeanor. He paced the yard, a wild look of terror in his eyes, oblivious to everything around him, searching...The Indians grew silent.  They recognized the madness in his eyes and watched him closely.  Finally, the trapper screamed "Cant you hear it!!!  CANT YOU HEAR IT!!!!!   Make them stop, please, please, make them stop!!!  STOP IT YOU HEAR!!!  STOOOOOOOOOOP!!!"  He ran to the woodpile and began to tear it apart, digging, clawing, screaming.  When the Ojibwa saw the poor remains of their friend and his family, they knew what had  happened.  They burned the madman at the stake on the shore of Isle Royale.  Then they climbed into their canoes and left the island.  To this day, Isle Royale remains uninhabited.  Hunters occasionally camp over night on its

shores, but no one lives in this wilderness paradise.  Some hunters have said that you can sometimes hear the sound of crying coming from the woods....

 

Well, there you have it.  This story first appeared in a book by an educated "half-breed" who collected stories from the Ojibwa elders and published them in a book in 1885.  I think his name was William Warren.  This version, however, is my own interpretation but I have tried to stick close to the course of events as described by Warren.

 

JS Ellis