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Lorenzo Cultural Center explores the dark side of Michigan lore during Tall Tales and Folklore: Exploring Michigan’s Traditional Stories

– Monday, March 6, 2017 12:00PM

With tales of ghostly hauntings, pirates, and infamous murders with ties to organized crime, Michigan’s cultural heritage turns to the dark side during Tall Tales and Folklore: Exploring Michigan’s Traditional Stories at the Lorenzo Cultural Center. Storytellers from around the state will delve into accounts of the shadowy side with the following presentations:

  • Blood on the Mitten: Infamous Michigan Murders, 1700 – Present, March 8, 11 a.m.: Tom Carr, award-winning journalist and author of the book Blood on the Mitten, discusses the most infamous and historically defining murders in Michigan history, taking attendees to each crime scene and putting each murder in its historical and social perspective.
  • Pirates, Crooks and Killers: The Dark Side of Sailing the Great Lakes, March 10, 11 a.m.: Maritime historian and author Frederick Stonehouse focuses on a little explored but fascinating aspect of Great Lakes maritime history – crimes on the inland seas and ports. Stonehouse looks at the purposeful sinking of ships by thieves or ship-owners trying to collect insurance and crimes perpetrated against crewmen in unfamiliar cities, exposing the dark side of sailing the Great Lakes. 
  • Haunted Travels of Michigan: Accounts of Hauntings and the Unexplained, March 16, 11 a.m.; Paranormal researcher and co-author of Haunted Travels in Michigan Kathleen R. Tedsen shares stories of the unexplained and paranormal. She includes research on the history of sites in Macomb County and beyond, as well as the results of hundreds of on-site paranormal investigations.
  • I Heard You Paint Houses: The Hoffa Mystery Solved, April 20, 7 p.m.; Lawyer and author Charles Brandt discusses his relationship with Teamster official and mafia associate Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran, including Sheeran’s confession to the killing of former Teamster President Jimmy Hoffa. Brandt met with Sheeran for the five years, leading up to his death in 2003, and later published Sheeran’s biography documenting his confession to Hoffa’s murder. He details the corroborating facts he’s found to support Sheeran’s story and gives his take on why the confession has not resulted in the FBI closing the case.

The Tall Tales and Folklore program series runs through May 6 and gives audiences a look at Michigan’s stories, both fact and fiction, with presentations on subjects ranging from investigations into the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Native American myths, songs from Michigan lumber camps, to examinations of various Michigan paranormal experiences. Exhibits include a traveling display from Michigan State University and numerous artifacts from other museums and local collectors.

The presentations and exhibits are open to the public at no charge, but preregistration is required for presentations by calling 586.445.7348 or by emailing No registration is required to view the exhibits. The Lorenzo Cultural Center is located on Macomb Community College’s Center Campus in Clinton Township and is open Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m, with extended hours on Thursday to 8 p.m.

A complete listing of Tall Tales and Folklore programming is available at: 


About the Lorenzo Cultural Center

The Lorenzo Cultural Center ( provides interactive learning opportunities for all ages, extending student discovery beyond classroom walls and creating multi-faceted experiences for community members to explore the influences and experiences that shape our community’s heritage.


About Macomb Community College

Macomb Community College ( is one of the nation’s leading community colleges, providing learning experiences to nearly 44,000 students annually. Macomb nationally ranks in the top two percent in the number of associate degrees awarded by community colleges and is the largest grantor of associate degrees in Michigan. The college’s comprehensive educational programming includes pre-collegiate experiences, university transfer and career preparation programs, bachelor degree completion and graduate degree programs, workforce training, professional education and certification, and continuing education and enrichment opportunities.


Media Contact: Sean M. Patrick, 586.445.7271,