These 10 Creepy Legends and Mysteries from Michigan will Give You Goosebumps
1. Little Mary’s Grave in Jackson
The death of a child is difficult for any parent, but imagine if you accidentally buried your child alive? That’s exactly what happened according to this legend. In 1892, Little Mary, the daughter of a wealthy Jackson businessman, died at the tender age of seven and was buried in Oaks Cemetery, now Hillcrest Memorial Park. The legend states that a few days after her death, Mary’s mother awoke, distraught and screaming that her daughter had been buried alive. To console the mother, the grave was exhumed, only to confirm the mother’s worst fears. Claw marks were discovered on the inside of the casket. Visitors to the grave over the years claim to have heard Little Mary crying and scratching at the lid of her coffin. Others claim a light or angel hovers over her grave.
2. The Paulding Light
If someone from Michigan says they’ve seen the light, they’re probably talking about the infamous Paulding light. Since 1966, folks in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula have struggled to find the source of the mysterious light that appears at night, in a valley outside of Paulding, off US 45 on Robbins Pond Road. Hundreds of locals and tourists claim to have seen the light, which varies from white to red to green to blue. Legend says, it’s the lantern from a railroad brakeman who was killed along the tracks that once ran through the valley. Students from Michigan Tech conducted a scientific study debunking the myth, saying the light comes from cars driving down a nearby highway. However, many don’t accept that explanation and continue to consider it an unexplained phenomenon.
Lots of Michiganders will tell you they believe in Bigfoot, and he lives right here in the Great Lakes. Sightings of Bigfoot in Michigan have been reported for years. Most recently, a trail cam near Beulah, in Northern Michigan, caught what to appears to be a Bigfoot on tape. In fact, there are 107 documented cases of Bigfoot encounters in The Mitten State. The greatest number of sightings occur in the Huron National Forest near Comins. It’s known as the Bigfoot Capital of Michigan.
4. The Ada Witch
Forget The Blair Witch Project. Michigan has its own dark witch character. The Findlay Cemetery in Ada is reportedly home to The Ada Witch. In the 1800s, a local married woman was caught with her lover, in the woods near the cemetery by her husband. A brutal fight broke out, and the husband killed his wife. The legend claims The Ada Witch, is a woman in a white dress who haunts the cemetery, and the ghost of the adulterous woman. Visitors to the location claim to have seen bluish-green mists and orbs. They say they also heard footsteps, weeping, shrieking, and sounds of a struggle. Some even claim to have been touched by the ghost.
5. The Beeson Mansion and Crypt
This tale is another that focuses on the unbearable loss of a child. When the infant son of the wealthy Beeson family in Niles passed away, he was buried in the family crypt across the street from the mansion. Legend says his mother went insane when he died. Every night she visited the crypt where she would feed, bath, and diaper the lifeless body. She even began to leave a lit lantern in the crypt, believing the baby was afraid of the dark. Eventually, gas lighting was installed in the crypt to appease her. In an even more gruesome twist, one night, while rocking the corpse to sleep, the eyes fell out the dead infant’s head. His mother never recovered from the shock and was institutionalized.
The first known sighting of the Michigan Dogman was in Wexford County in 1887. Two lumberjacks spotted a creature they said appeared to have the head of a dog on a man’s body. Another sighting in the Upper Peninsula reportedly resulted in finding horses who died of fright and were surrounded by large, canine-like tracks. Five wild dogs attacked Robert Fortney in Paris, Michigan, in 1938. He claimed one of the dogs walked upright on two legs like a man. Other documented Dogman encounters come from Allegan County, Manistee, and Cross Village.
7. The Corn Monster of Wynn
Locals around Wynn claim a monster lurks in the cornfields in the area. A shadowy figure that looks like a large, disheveled man, emerges from the stalks and scares anyone driving in the rural area late at night. A 2003 account from a delivery man seems to confirm the legend. Stopped on a country road near Wynn one night to rest, he got out of his truck to stretch his legs. Next thing he knew, a frightening human-like creature appeared on the edge of the cornfield. The terrified driver ran back to his truck and drove off.
8. Denton Road Mystery
Denton Road outside of Detroit, between Denton and Caton, is home to all kinds of unexplained activity. People claim phantom headlights charge down Denton Road after drivers and pedestrians. They say they also hear the cries of a baby, small footprints mysteriously appear on cars and they see the glowing blue apparition of a woman. Before the road was reconstructed, there was a bridge in the area where the mysterious events took place. One legend says a child was killed in a car accident on the bridge. Another says a mother and her baby were killed on the bridge by a jealous husband. Locals believe it’s all the work of pranksters.
9. The Singing Sands of Bete Grise (It’s pronounced bay-de-gree, if you were wondering.)
The sand on Bete Grise beach in the U.P. makes a singing sound when pressed down with the palm of your hand. Striking it quickly with your hand makes a barking sound. If the sand is removed from the beach to another location, the phenomenon can’t be replicated. It’s said that the sound the sand makes is the voice of a Native American maid crying out to her lost lover who died at sea, in Lake Superior. Scientists say the sand sings when perfect conditions are met, such as size of the grains, humidity, and the makeup of the sand. However, they don’t completely understand what creates the phenomenon.
10. Grand Island Lighthouse Murder
The isolation and loneliness of a lighthouse already creates mystery. Add murder, and you have one interesting story. In a small sailboat floating near Au Sable Point in June of 1890, the body of Edward Morrison was discovered. He was the assistant keeper at the Grand Island Lighthouse in the U.P. Witnesses reported his head appeared to be bashed in by a bat. But the coroner listed exposure as the cause of death. However, a second coroner’s investigation concluded he was murdered. After discovering Morrison’s body and realizing the beacon in the lighthouse had not been lit for almost a week, some men from Munising went out to the island to investigate. The head lightkeeper, George Genery, was nowhere to be found. Supplies recently brought from town were still piled on the dock, and the contents inside the lighthouse appeared undisturbed. Searchers looked everywhere for Genery. Even his wife who lived in town had no idea where he was. Genery was never found and Morrison’s murder was never solved.