Mysterious balls of light? Phantom headlights charging down Denton Road, the cries of a ghostly baby, tiny footprints on cars and a glowing blue apparition of a woman? Does this really all happen in one place? Folks who have been “legend tripping” down Denton road going back to the 1960’s will say it has. These were all the paranormal symptoms I discovered while researching this article on one of Michigan’s “classic haunts.”
Denton Road runs through the cities of Denton and Canton, just west of the Detroit area. And let’s just say the information I came across while looking up Denton’s paranormal activity was extremely confusing! Multiple versions of this story are everywhere. In her book Weird Michigan, author Linda Godfrey chose to print a version (similar to the classic Ada Witch legend told in west Michigan) that tells of a man who catches his wife cheating. He kills her lover with an axe and chases his wife (with their baby in her arms) to the Denton Road bridge, where he kills her and no one knows what becomes of the baby.
The ghost of the woman has been seen as a wandering specter that glows blue in the night, which earned her the nickname, “the blue lady.” The tiny foot prints and cries are said to be from the baby. Some say that the blue glow is from the lantern that she had with her as she ran from her enraged husband in the darkness of night. This story was first compiled by Canton resident Virginia Bailey Parker in her book, Ghost Stories and Other Tales from Canton, which was published for the Canton Historical Society in 1998.
Parker tells how very human teenagers used to prank the thrill seekers who would come out to the road at night in the hope of catching something supernatural. It was common for people to arrive at midnight and unknown to them, be scared off by none other than the pranksters and not the supposed ghosts. She also collected stories from people who remember rigging lanterns to fishing poles while driving up and down the road in the 1960’s, making people in the distance believe they were seeing a floating light.
The ghost of the woman has been seen as a wandering specter that glows blue in the night, which earned her the nickname, “the blue lady.”
Internet stories on ancient websites (by today’s standards) tend to lean towards a different story that says a child was hit by a car on the former Denton Road bridge or others tell of a car driving off the bridge and crashing. The bridge used to cross the lower Rouge River but is no longer there after construction in 2003. But there have been reports about people genuinely believing they have seen strange eerie blue orbs of light and other paranormal happenings along the Denton Road bridge area.
People who have visited the bridge in the past would park nearby, turn off their lights and wait for the “spook lights” to appear. Many were disappointed but a few claim they did indeed witness phantom lights come out of nowhere. Some reports have even claimed they were “chased” by the lights. This same report dubbed the lights as the “Denton Demon.” Most likely that term is used by locals in that area as it doesn’t seem to be used often around the Internet stories. It does have a nice ring to it though, doesn’t it? (Denton Demon…Denton Demon…wonder what would happen if I said it three times…)
This story takes on typical urban legend attributes and is what I like to call an “interactive legend.” These are places/stories where people try to interact with the legend in the hopes of getting a response, hopefully from a supernatural source. Think of stories like “Bloody Mary” and trying to get her to appear in the mirror.
*If you are legend tripping, be aware that Denton road is public, but surrounding homes and areas may be private property. Do not trespass and be respectful of motorists and people who live in the area.