From the Creepy Cleveland Archives

Contributed by Douglas Manry

Dear Folks of Creepy Cleveland,
Being a life long Clevelander, I remember a lot of the stories on your site, especially the melonheads and old Doc Crow. Many a night my friends and I would go searching the woods for melon heads back in the late 60s, but never managed to see one.
Anyway, I came across the following story in a small paperback I found while waiting in a doctors office. Ive never been able to find out anything more about it, and I was wondering if you had ever heard of it.
It was back in the late 1800s, I believe, when a boatful of German immigrants was sailing on Lake Erie. The boat was a few miles from the coast of Cresthaven Beach in Willowick, (my original hometown) when it ran aground. After several unsuccessful attempts to free her, she then caught on fire. Horrified onlookers watched helplessly as passengers perished from the flames, or dived overboard and were swallowed up by the lakes currents. Over the next few weeks, bodies continued to wash up on Cresthaven beach and were eventually buried in a mass grave there. Rumors then began to circulate that many of the immigrants were wearing money belts, whereupon groups of ghoulish treasure seekers dug up the grave in search of riches. Legend has that ghosts reside in the area where this tragedy took place,wandering up and down the little park at Cresthaven Beach.
In case you havent heard this one, just thought I’d share it with you.
Please don’t hesitate to write if there’s anything else I can do for you.
Thank you for the great stories,
Doug Manry

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