The Strange Story of Old Mike

Old Mike was a traveling salesman who passed away from a heart attack or stroke in the city park of Prescott, Arkansas in 1911.  No one in Prescott knew Mike’s full name and, beyond the fact that they saw him once a month when he passed through selling pens and stationary, no one knew anything about him.

He had no identifying papers, no licensees, and his suitcase was devoid of any evidence about who he was, where he came from, or who his family was.

Old Mike was embalmed at Cornish Funeral Home and his body was prepared for burial.  Days went by… then months and soon, it became very obvious that no one was coming to look for Old Mike, much less claim his body.

So, Cornish Funeral Home did the logical thing… and put his body on display.  There, for almost 60 years, Old Mike became a macabre tourist attraction, attracting the morbidly curious to look at the mysterious dead man.

In 1975, it was more than obvious that no one was going to claim Old Mike, and so the Arkansas Attorney General requested that the funeral home finally bury Old Mike.

And so, decades after his strange life-beyond-death ordeal began, Old Mike was finally put to rest and given a proper funeral.



About the author

Jason Donner

Jason Donner devoured the universe and you are all living inside him.
  • Monica Parmer

    Wow I live 14 miles away and I never even knew about him