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Lighthouses meet true crime in new book by Michigan author

The book includes stories of 12 different lighthouses and a series of lighthouse keepers, who all died in tragic ways and, in some cases, were murdered.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — If you’re a fan of true crime and lighthouses, there’s a new book out from an author with ties to West Michigan.

This is the second book by author and Grand Rapids PR maven Dianna Stampfler. Her first, “Michigan's Haunted Lighthouses”, was released in 2019.

The brand new “Death & Lighthouses on the Great Lakes: A History of Murder and Misfortune” came out at the end of February.

It includes stories from 12 different lighthouses and a series of lighthouse keepers, who all died in tragic ways and, in some cases, were murdered.

One tale from South Bass Island on Lake Erie took place during a lockdown because of a smallpox outbreak.

“Sam Anderson was told he couldn't leave. And then his body was found on a cliff, below the lighthouse, and they ruled it a suicide, which is really interesting because if a guy was screaming for his life trying to escape death from evac from an outbreak of smallpox, why would he commit suicide? It seems kind of far-fetched," Stampfler said. 

Stampfler began researching lighthouses in 1997 when she worked for the West Michigan Tourist Association. She now runs a company called Promote Michigan.

You can purchase her book now wherever books are sold, including Amazon. You can also get a signed copy by the author by visiting her website.

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