Midwest Book Review on Mikel Classen’s True Tales: The Forgotten History of the U.P.

Review by Carolyn WIlhelm for MBR

Pioneer days conjure up romantic, sentimental ideas of simple living and being close to nature. However, the truth also included lawless, rugged, difficult times. Native Americans and those from Europe mined, traveled, worked, logged, and sailed Lake Superior’s frontier wilderness amid uncivilized criminals, kidnappers, and slavers. Laws were few, enforcement was scarce, violent events were often, and shipwrecks were many. Wonderful life-saving deeds of kindness and compassion are also recorded on these pages as opportunities to be a hero were many.

Consider mining. Yes, rarely paired with pioneers such as Laura Ingalls Wilder, yet it is part of history at the same time. And Lake Superior! So few people understand how cold it is year-round (about 40 degrees) or how many shipwrecks (about 350) have taken place in the deepest waters of the Great Lakes. Before modern mariner tools, sailors had a strenuous, grueling life when pirates were plundering boats. Surviving crashes in winter required ingenuity and persistence unless a body became an icicle. And slavers trafficked women to stockades, as detailed in the book.

Classen does history an excellent service by revealing the truth. Sometimes we think humanity has advanced little. An attitude quickly challenged in these pages. Readers will feel gratitude for all they have today after finishing these tales.


True Tales: The Forgotten History of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
Mikel B. Classen
Modern History Press
https://www.modernhistorypress.com
B09WJMKV12, $5.95 Kindle
9781615996353, $29.95 HC, $18.95 PB, 162 pp.

Carolyn Wilhelm, Reviewer
Wise Owl Factory LLC

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Lake Superior Tales, 2nd Edition

SKU 978-1-61599-404-5
$14.95
In stock
1
Product Details
UPC: 978-1-61599-404-5
Brand: Modern History Press
Binding: Paperback
Edition: 2nd
Author: Mikel B. Classen
Pages: 134

Join us for epic adventures in the U.P. on land and lakes!

Pirates, thieves, shipwrecks, sexy women, lost gold, and adventures on the Lake Superior frontier await you! In this book, you’ll sail on a ship full of gold, outwit deadly shapeshifters, battle frontier outlaws and even meet the mysterious agent that Andrew Jackson called "the meanest man" he ever knew. Packed with action, adventure, humor, and suspense, this book has something for every reader. Journey to the wilds of the Lake Superior shoreline through ten stories that span the 19th century through present day including "The Wreck of the Marie Jenny," "The Bigg Man," "Wolf Killer," and "Bullets Shine Silver in the Moonlight."

Mikel B. Classen is a longtime resident of Sault Sainte Marie in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. His intimacy of the region, the history and its culture gives this book a feel of authenticity that is rarely seen. As a writer, journalist, columnist, photographer, and editor with more than 30 years experience, his breadth of knowledge is unparalleled.

"It's clear that Mikel B. Classen knows and loves the Lake Superior area of Michigan and brings it to life in a delightful way. If you want frequent laughs, unusual characters who jump off the page, and the fruit of a highly creative mind, you’ve got to read this little book."
-- Bob Rich, author, Looking Through Water

From Modern History Press

Learn more at www.MikelClassen.com

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