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Paranormal Great Lakes & Mississippi River

Melvin Dummar says a grand conspiracy has denied him his portion of billionaire Howard Hughes' vast estate. Many consider Dummar to be a fraud but an in-depth investigation by Gary Magnesen has apparently shown Dummar to be a good samaritan who saved Hughes from certain death. Both joined George Knapp to discuss why Hughes was in the desert, as well as those who schemed to deny Dummar and several institutions of their rightful share of the Hughes estate.

In the first hour, veteran music journalist Joel Selvin talked about the notorious Rolling Stones Altamont concert of 1969, considered by many to be rock’s darkest day.

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Paranormal Great Lakes & Mississippi River

Show Archive
Date: Friday - June 20, 2014
Host: George Noory
Guests: Charles Cassady

George welcomed former film critic for TV Guide and author of several books on the paranormal, Charles Cassady, Jr., who shared strange tales from the Great Lakes and Mississippi River regions as well as other weird stories. Cassady said he approaches his work from a skeptical perspective, while noting that there have been "too many sincere accounts reported to me... that I just cannot completely rule out a fantastic claim." One interesting account he related was about Lodner Phillips, who invented and tested submarines in the Great Lakes in the 1850s—decades before author Jules Verne published Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Tales about Phillips say he took his family for a pleasure excursion to the bottom of Lake Michigan, Cassady reported.

Cassady detailed another fascinating piece of Great Lakes folklore from the 1940s, when a tugboat captain claimed to have been nearly rammed by what appeared to be an antiquated steamer. The captain boarded the old vessel, saw what he described as a zombie-like crew, and was informed that he was aboard the Hudson—a ship that went down in September 1901 with all hands lost. The tugboat captain was told the crew had been forced by the devil to rise from their watery grave every year and sail on the anniversary of the sinking, Cassady explained. The captain was warned to disembark the phantom ship or join its cursed crew permanently, he added.

Cassady continued with the bizarre story from the 1930s about Goat Castle in Mississippi. The owners, a demented, crippled, would-be piano player and his caregiver girlfriend, let the mansion fall into ruin and get overrun by livestock, he revealed. Their former friend and neighbor, Jennie Merrill, hated the sight of Goat Castle and tried unsuccessfully to buy the property and have it razed to the ground, Cassady said. Jennie was later found shot to death, her neighbors were arrested and questioned about the crime, and it was determined that a roving bandit had killed her, he noted. According to Cassady, however, stories abound of a ghostly woman haunting the adjacent woods and shrieking about her real murderers—the owners of Goat Castle.

Open Lines followed in the final hour.

News segment guests: Lauren Weinstein / Peter Davenport

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Friday June 20, 2014

  • Moms
    A Tribe Called Quest
  • 1979
    Smashing Pumpkins
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