Assinins is in the U.P. but would be worth a stop during a Michigan roadtrip. The town was founded in 1843 by Bishop Frederic Baraga, who built an orphanage on the site - one of the first in the Upper Peninsula. Baraga settled here after an invitation by Chief Edward Assinins.

It began as a Catholic orphanage, then turned over to the Chippewa tribe; the orphanage housed both Native American children as well as European. To this day, some of the oldest buildings in this area of the U.P. are found here...and most of the old downtown is bare. All that's left is the old one-room school, a church, and a barn. The orphanage has been torn down.

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Since the orphanage has been demolished, it squelched the hopes of paranormal investigators. But does that mean there's no paranormal activity left? Apparently not. According to, people in the area - tourists, thrill-seekers and residents alike - have seen apparitions of people that once inhabited the orphanage: the ghostly images of children, nuns and priests have been seen roaming the former ruins, inside and out. Not to mention the usual objects that move on their own, various noises and sounds that resemble faint voices come from where the orphanage once stood.

The mission buildings in Assinins are part of one of the earliest Catholic missions in the Upper Peninsula. There were originally between 15-20 log cabin homes in Assinins and the nearby cemetery includes the final resting places of some of the original missionaries and orphanage priests. There are some buildings still standing that go back to the 1800's and a few people are left in this town, so treat the area with respect if/when you visit. But it's a fascinating old Michigan town that you really should visit to see something historic.

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