Posts Tagged ‘1969’

A ‘paradise above the clouds’ is a description once given to the makeshift town for the workers of the Matsuo Sulfur Mines. The town was well furbished, modern and housed up to 15,000 workers. Quite often a fog comes over the area, over the now abandoned town, and it is barely visible even to those knowing where they should look.

It ceased action in 1969 and the once busy area now lays in relative silence. It was not likely to remain inhabited due to it being a hard place to travel, without a reason of commerce and work it seems inevitable but a little sad.

4,000 workers were supported in a 15,000 strong community, the mist surrounded these people regularly and today makes it hard to find the place.n There are not many artefacts of a personal nature left but the schools, apartments and other buildings are said to be easy to access.

One local story does say that someone killed himself in the school gym, using a basketball rack. There are no reports of hauntings or ghostly goings but plenty of talk about it’s eerie beauty.


New York, just off the shore of the Hudson River hosts a medieval style castle that can be seen on the island more often locally referred to as Bannerman’s. It was once emblazoned on the walls of the castle as ‘Bannerman’s Arsenal’ but now has decayed too much to be seen fully. It was built around 1901 to 1908, to be a warehouse for the weapons traded by Francis Bannerman VI, who was an arms dealer and curious man.

In 1967 the Island was sold for a small sum to the New York State, and the family abandoned the island. In 1969 a fire left the island in it’s present and ruined state.

It is accessible by boat, and far too dangerous to swim with tides, there is a security presence but all is not lost, there’s possibilities of tours in the future.

Meanwhile for a chance to safely see it, if you are in the area, go to Route 9D, go to Breakneck Point and park. Cross the bridge but watch out for trains!


The Michigan Murders were committed by serial killer John Norman Collins, they were a highly publicized series of killings between 1967  to 1969. The murders began with Eastern Michigan University student Mary Fleszar on July 10th, 1967 and her body was found in August on an abandoned farm a few miles north of where she had disappeared.

Two days after her remains had been identified, minus her hands and feet, a young man arrived asking to take photo’s of the woman and was rightfully denied. They did not give a clear description of the man either.

A year later student Joan Schell was found dead with multiple stab wounds, she had last been seen with Collins, who was a failing student and when questioned he claimed he was with his mother just north of the Detroit border, police took him at his word.

March 1969, Denton Cemetery gave up another victim of Jane Mixer, a law student (University of Michigan) she was shot and strangled, alongside her were her shoes and a copy of Joseph Heller’s novel ‘Catch 22’. Originally it was thought she might be part of the murders but later on a 62 year old called Gary Leiterman was convicted in regards to her death.

26th March, 1969 gave up another victim, Maralynn Skelton who had been badly beaten, and there was speculation it might be drug related, she had spent some time near Collin’s place and then three weeks later a 13 year old, Dawn Basom was found strangled. She had last been seen along a dirt road where Collins rode his motorcycles on a daily basis. Public outcry was increasing, Alice Kalom was found in a field with a cut throat, stab wounds and a gunshot to the head.

The police then had another body to contend with, Karen Sue Beineman, she was beaten and strangled to death. It was this murder that led to his discovery, whilst waiting on Beineman the day she disappeared a woman in a wig shop had gotten a good look at the man on the motorcycle.  From then on the details unraveled  clues and testimonies led to him being placed on trial for the murders.

Collins was tried August 19th, 1970 and found guilty, he was sentenced to life imprisonment with no possibility of parole due to Beineman’s brutal slaying.  In the early 1980’s he changed his name to Chapman, which was his mother’s maiden name, and is currently serving his life sentence in the Marquette Branch Prison, Michigan.

News Article on CBS

No I haven’t sneezed! It’s the name of a ship that floated around for over 30 years, and could be attributed to a ghost ship legend.

It was a steel 1,322 ton cargo steamer from 1914 that was owned y Hudson’s Bay Company and was used for trade. She was abandoned in 1931 and then seen numerous times until the last reported sighting in 1969.

1st October 1931 the ship ran into trouble when she got trapped in ice. The crew abandoned the ship and got a half-mile away to a town called Barrow. She loosened up and two days later they set off, but by October 8th she was stuck again and on the 15th the company sent aircraft to retrieve 22 of the crew. 15 stayed behind intending to wait out the winter until she freed up, and made a wooden shelter some distance away.

November came and on the 24th a powerful blizzard struck, there were no signs of the ship and the skipper determined she had broken up in the storm. A few days later however they were informed by an inuit that they had seen her, the 15 men then found her and deciding it was unlikely she would last the winter they took the most valuable furs and they were transported back by air.

She did not sink however and there were sightings of her but unfortunately each time they were either unable to get to her due to bad weather or not well enough equipped to perform a salvage operation. The last sighting was from a group of Inuit 38 years after she had been abandoned. She had been stuck fast in ice but then never seen again.

She had been boarded in March 1933 by a group of Eskimo’s who stayed there for ten days due to a freak storm. In 1969 she was last sited and then in 2006 a project was launched by the Alaskan Government to try and find her.  As of yet she remains not found.

Blog by a descendent. 

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