Story of the Christmas Ship

By Natalie Jovonovich - Upper Michigan Source


The year was 1912 and a ship set sail from Thompson Harbor in Manistique bound for Chicago with more than 3,000 Christmas trees on board.

The next day the ship went down in a Lake Michigan snowstorm, but the tradition of shipping Christmas trees from Upper Michigan continued for many years afterward.

The story lives on 80 plus years later through Carl Behrend, who grew up in Manistique.

He says he grew up hearing the stories about the doomed Christmas Ship.

"Over time I became more knowledgeable about the Christmas Ship and my in-laws had some old photos, and I collected some old photos and collected some old stories and it seems like the more you look into this story, the more you find," Behrend

It wasn't until later in his life that he developed a passion for the tale, and so he decided to write the novel 'The Legend of the Christmas Ship' in 2005.


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Lake Michigan Christmas Ship Thompson Harbor Manistique Carl Behrend Upper Michigan