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Dickinson County, Michigan 1963

I spent the summer of 1963 in Escanaba, Michigan with my aunt and uncle. Every Friday night we would go for the weekend to their summer cabin in Dickinson County near the town of Hardwood. I recall it was about a half hours drive from Escanaba. On the Friday night in question (early July), my uncle and I were sitting on the front porch (about 7:00 PM) and my aunt was in the back yard hanging clothes on the line. She ran into the front yard and told us a bear was at the tree line behind the house. My uncle went to get his rifle and I went into the back yard to see the bear. I was a kid from New Jersey and we don't get very much wildlife wandering the streets of Perth Amboy. When I got around back, I stood frozen in the yard. Our visitor was no kind of "bear" I'd ever seen.
He (she or it) was standing under a tree approximately 75' from the house. It was standing on two legs and had it's right arm draped over a branch and was looking under the branch at us (my aunt was behind me). It had to be at least 8' tall (we measured the height of the branch the next day) and was covered by short, dark hair. Because it was standing in the shadow, I couldn't tell if the hair was brown or black. The face, under the hands and bottoms of the feet were fairly light colored (like a light skinned Negro) and the face itself was quite human like. The eyes looked dark because of the shadows. We all stood there for at least a century looking at each other (probably no more than a few seconds) when my uncle came out onto the back porch with his rifle. At that point our friend casually turned and walked back up the deer path and into the woods. We never saw or heard from him again although we always felt he was near. My aunt's dog liked to go for walks in the woods with them and after that incident, wouldn't leave the property. The dog was not with us that night.

My uncle's cabin was at the end of an old abandoned logging road several miles outside of town. The entire area is heavily forested with pine and fir trees and the ground is covered with pine needles. The terrain itself is rolling hills with a few high ridges and is rather easy to hike into. I never really thought about what I'd seen until the article appeared in the old "Argosy" magazine about the "Michigan Monster." That article was written in the mid or late 60's. There were sightings on the upper peninsula of Michigan of a hairy thing that raised some hell for a while and them sort of faded away. I firmly believe our friend was the Michigan Monster.

I would also like to point out that my uncle was a respected businessperson in the community. He was never criticized (at least to his face) when he told the story of our encounter. The old-timers up there know something is out there and respect the word of people who have a sighting. Randy Wertz.

Credit Source:Ray Crowe