A Castle and Indian Gold in the Thumb
The Legend of Loosemore Castle
There is a tale in some of the history papers of Michigan’s Upper Thumb that speaks of a hermit who owned a bit of land around what was called Loosemore point. Hugh Loosemore kept to himself. He collected driftwood along the beach from ships that had broken up near the point and it was plentiful. He started building what was described as a hotel-like structure along the shore. It supposedly had a ballroom and several floors. It must have reached impressive size as the locals began to call it Loosemore’s Castle.
Hugh Loosemore kept to himself. So the locals attributed all kinds thoughts of what his story was. A fugitive?, a pirate? To add to the mystery, it was widely thought that Loosemore’s property was burial site of ancient Indian Inca gold. The legend of his creation along with an Indian tale was highlighted in a 1932 book with a poem called Loosemore’s Castle.
A Lonely End
Sadly, local lore indicates Hugh Loosemore was found frozen to death in his large driftwood castle. However, we are unable to find any official records of Hugh Loosemore, despite being widely mentioned in antidotal histories by published researchers.
We have struggled to find a historical map with denoting Loosemore’s Point anywhere in Huron County. It’s mentioned in the Huron Times but with no absolute location. We are given a hint by the published stories of historian Florence McKinnon. She points to an area “three and half miles west of Port Crescent. We are thinking that it’s today called Hat Point. Furthermore, its interesting to note that Loosemore Road offers a southern border of sorts for the area near Hat Point.
But Hey, We Like a Good Legend
Despite the doubts we think there is a hint of truth to the saga. So, the next time you stop at Walt’s Meats, or Kreb’s Cottages or at Duggan’s Family Campground you may be only steps away from the site of a legendary driftwood castle and a fortune of buried Inca gold.
- Pioneer history of Huron County, Michigan by Florence McKinnon Gwinn
- Huron County: prose, poems and pictures / compiled by Chester A. Hey
- Ancestery.com message board
- It happened here one spring. Nelson, June
- Featured Image – “Indian Chiefs” – Library & Archives Canada
- Huron County Nature Center Near Hat Point
- Walt’s Meats – Your Cheeseburger Stop
- History of Pointe Aux Barques
- Huron County Lighthouse Tour