Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Hello, this is Eric Hjerstedt Sharp, your host for this the first in the Bay Wave's Literary Series – Great Lake Great Writers, click here:TheBayWavewhere we talk to writers who have written about people, places and events around the Lake Superior basin. Today we talk to Steve Lehto from Michigan, the author of Death's Door: The Truth Behind the Italian Hall Disaster and the Strike of 1913, first published by Momentum Books in 2006 and already in its 4th printing. The book won a Michigan Notable Book award in 2006 and has been widely reviewed.
The Italian Hall is a Christmas Eve story recounted, fact-checked and retold by Mr. Lehto. It may not be the prettiest story, but its true story, and beauty and truth come together in this true tale of justice. Justice because the truth and the whole truth has finally come out regarding what happened that Christmas Eve 101 years ago, and the falsehoods and lies have been dispelled. To request a copy of the audio in your email, send a request in comments below with your name and email address To read an excellent review about Steve Lehto's book, Death's Door: The Truth Behind Michigan's Largest Mass Murder, click here:A review by Michigan attorney Frederick Baker Jr. To view the trailer to Red Medal,
a PBS documentary about the 1913 miners' strike in Calumet, Michigan, which Steve Lehto appears on and of which he was the historical consultant click hereRed Medal............................................................................................Steve Lehto has been practicing Lemon Law and Consumer Protection for 23 years. He has handled cases for thousands of consumers. He wrote the Lemon Law Bible and taught at the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law for ten years. He is a frequent lecturer on Consumer Law and has been quoted by or appeared on countless media outlets such as the New York Times, the BBC, CNN, Good Morning America, WDIV, WJBK, and WXYZ. He also has written several award winning history books on topics as diverse as the Italian Hall disaster, the wrongful conviction of Timothy Masters, and the Chrysler Turbine Car. To view Steve Lehto's website, click here

Monday, December 22, 2014

Sunday, December 21, 2014

BLAST FROM THE PAST (The Bay Wave, Ida Goldberg hailed from Ashland before moving to Chicago By Eric Hjerstedt Sharp Born and raised in Ashland, Ida Goldberg involved herself in several academic, sports and club activities at Ashland High School before graduating with the Class of 1929. The daughter of Russian immigrant shopkeeper parents, Ida lived with her parents and seven siblings at 308 3rd Ave. East at the time she graduated from high school. Their house was not far from the dry goods shop where her father Louis worked and her mother’s relatives, also Russian immigrants, owned the Saxe Department Store at 303 W. 2nd (Main) St. Both families were close and were members of Ashland’s then-thriving B’nai B’rith community. As student manager of the yearbook Wawata through her four years at Ashland High School, Ida participated in dramatic and musical activities. Classmate Dorothy Hampel’s copy of the yearbook has been donated to the Ashland Historical Society’s Museum, and is available for viewing along with a bookshelf of other yearbooks. In the copy, Ida wrote Dorothy a note: “Lots of luck, Ida.” Ida decided to pursue an education in social work and left Ashland to pursue a degree in the field at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and later attended the University of Chicago’s Social Services Administration school. It was during this time when she met author and radio journalist Louis “Studs” Terkel, whom she later married. The couple lived in Chicago for more than 60 years. Ida involved herself in editing her husband’s many books including his 1985 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, “The Good War.” She stayed active in many literary, social and civil right causes. Ida Terkel did return to Ashland Sept. 15, 1979 for her 50th class reunion, where she may have attended the scheduled tour of the then-new high school and middle school facilities. Ida died Dec. 23, 1999. Studs Terkel died Oct. 31, 2008.


DAVID LENDER'S BLOG: Writers: At 6:45 this morning it was cool enough, 70°, that I was able to run my 3 miles.   I needed it; this heat wave has kiboshed my exercise regi...

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

FROM THE ARCHIVES - FOR EDUCATIONAL USE ONLY Business North - Around The Region - Duluth & Superior Newspaper Al Capone's 'Hideout’ foreclosure stirs national attention Al Capone’s former sister-in-law disputes lore that that he used it to ferry Canadian whiskey to Chicago during Prohibition. 10/6/2009 by Eric Hjerstedt Sharp HAYWARD— The Sawyer County Register of Deeds has been inundated with calls about the pending Sheriff’s sale of The Hideout, Inc. in nearby Couderay, a legendary safe house for Chicago gangster Al Capone. A tourist attraction for decades, the 407-acre wooded site with its own private lake and castle-like stone house is in foreclosure and slated for auction on Oct. 8. “You can look at all the (records) if you want, but you are not going to find Capone’s name on any of the titles,” said one office employee. “He was never the owner.” A flood of newspaper stories about the foreclosure spiked interest in the property after the Chippewa Valley Bank of Winter placed a legal foreclosure sale notice in the Chicago Tribune. The bank initiated the foreclosure after the latest owners, Guy and Michelle Houston, defaulted on their mortgage. They don’t have a listed telephone in the area and their attorney Todd Smith did not return telephone inquiries seeking further details. Minimum bid for the property is set at $2.5 million, said Charles Warner, the bank’s vice president. (Johnson Bank in Hayward is handling museum exhibits and other Hideout items separately from the Sheriff’s sale.) Warner said he did not know about the property’s supposed use by the gangster during the Prohibition era. Lore has it that Capone and his gang used it to receive whiskey shipments via seaplane from Canada for transport to Chicago. It also raises the possibility that Capone and fellow mobsters used The Hideout to plot the bloody 1929 St. Valentine’s Day Massacre of seven members of the rival Bugs Malone gang in Chicago. His former sister-in-law, Madeline Morichetti, 87, disputes the claim that Capone frequented The Hideout. She lives in a Hurley nursing home. A nurse before she married Al’s brother, Ralph “Bottles” Capone, Morichetti chairs the Iron County Republican Party. She has one daughter from her first marriage, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. After Ralph’s death, Madeline married his business partner and friend, the late Sarafeno “Suds” Morichetti. In a late September interview, she said Ralph told her neither he nor his brother ever had stepped foot on the Couderay property. Al Capone was never charged with the St. Valentine’s murders, but was convicted of income tax evasion in 1931 and served an 11-year federal prison term. In 1945, Madeline and Ralph built a house near Mercer on a lake just off Iron County Highway J. She said her infamous brother-in-law stayed at the house for part of two summers before his death in 1947. In The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre: The Untold Story of the Gangland Bloodbath That Brought Down Al Capone, published in 2004, authors William Helmer Jr. and Arthur Bilek write that Capone ”may have hatched the devious plot at an autumn 1928 gathering” at the resort. When approached about such allegations when the couple was still living in Mercer, Madeline said Ralph dismissed the legend as a promotional stunt to capitalize on the Capone name. “He was good-natured, and dismissed such talk by telling friends the promoters were merely doing their job,” she said. His widow isn’t so charitable. ‘If they are going to capitalize on untruths, I want it stopped. Any writer that doesn’t want to write the truth, draws conclusions and gets things from here and there to make up a story . . .that’s what happened all these years,” Morichetti said. Update (10/9/09): On Oct. 8 the property went to a sheriff’s auction. Despite numerous inquiries from prospective buyers, the only bid came from the Chippewa Valley Bank, which purchased it for $2.6 million with the goal of reselling. Eric Sharp is a freelance writer and public relations practitioner living in Iron River.

Saturday, December 6, 2014