The Legend of Bloody Run- Epilogue

Today I’ve provided for you Mike O’Connor’s account of The Legend of Bloody Run that was found in the Michigan Holiday News from 1989. I would now like to make a few observations about this event.

Most people are probably unaware of the fact that in those days it was the conductor that was in charge of the train and not the engineer. However that particular conductor’s “Loco-Motive” of taking over the train and replacing the engineer was crazy. Their argument had to be overheard by the lumbermen and I wonder how they felt about the inexperienced conductor taking over for the engineer? I wonder how many of those lumbermen chose not to continue onward with that train?

Also how many of those lumbermen might have jumped off the train before it ran off the track? Were there any survivors at all? One also has to wonder about the last thoughts of the conductor as he saw the train out of control? I would take it that the engineer was not around for that ride so what were his thoughts?

I found the speculation of Mr. O’Connor in regard to his after thoughts about the incident intriguing. Do local residents still hear errie sounds relating to that accident even today? Does that creek really run red on the day of that anniversary or are some locals helping that along with some cherry Kool-Aid?

Has anyone reading Big Bass Lake and Beyond been to that scene of late especially at night? I would be most interested in your observations. By the way, Bloody Run Creek is really the Little Manistee River.

5 thoughts on “The Legend of Bloody Run- Epilogue”

  1. Dave, I have a pretty good handle on the exact location of this event assuming it happened. There is only one such grade with a sharp curve at the bottom. A couple of locals had also related the story to me before I read this and clued me into the spot. One of these days I plan to go over there with a metal detector to poke around. If such an event happened there would still be small peices of twisted steel in the ground not far below the surface. Work has been crazy for a while not so time for hobbies has been scarce. I am taking a week off over the summer and maybe I can go then.


  2. yes i have i went last night we heard the engine of the train and heard the train whistle and have heard the moans from the ones taken by this accident i thought it was pretty cool and yes the water does have blood in it i seen it this summer when it rained the night before. i have went by it with my kids and they asked me and i said i had no clue until now i do know why thanks for shareing this legend.


  3. Bloody Run Creek is not the Little Manistee River, that’s Pere Marqutte RR, no grade or curve there. In the 60’s I spent time at my grandparents cabin on Able Dr. on the Sable River, they had a local friend named Ralph Davis he, lived up on Brooks Rd. He told us the story of Bloody Run Hill, the RR grade is on the south side of 5 Mile Rd. west of Brooks Rd. The curve is just east of where the FunSpot used to be, the grade runs from there down to the Sable River where it crossed a bridge. If you take Able Dr. south to the end you run into it. Although there is a house there now. I have been at the curve with a metal detector, the only significant find was about 4 links of chain with ring about 3 inches in diameter attached to it, I’m thinking a load securing chain. In 1983 my wife and I visited the curve, walking down the grade to southwest you see bumps where the railroad ties where, every so often a railroad spike stuck up, of course I snagged one. I’ve not been to the curve at night, yet.


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