Road Trip: Day 10—Wethersfield and “The Witch of Blackbird Pond” (Part Two of Two)

If you like old buildings, Wethersfield, Connecticut is pretty much house porn for you. The slideshow below is what I saw while walking to and from the Cove.

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After I toured the Buttolph-Williams House, I walked over to the cemetery.

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It was a very sunny day, and a hot early afternoon, but the cemetery still gave me the creeps. My guide was kind enough to let me know that the oldest stones were at the top of the hill, known as Hungry Hill because that is where the Indians would retreat during flooding times, often with little sustenance.

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It’s just not a vacation if I don’t get to go to an old cemetery.

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It took me a surprisingly short amount of time before I found Gershom Bulkeley’s gravestone. As I said, in the bright, hot sun, it was still an intensely creepy experience, but rather awe-inspiring and almost breathtaking.

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I mean, this is the man who saved Mercy Wood’s life! WITH ONIONS!

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My tour guide gave me the name of the man with the oldest surviving gravestone, but I had forgotten it by the time I crossed the street (I never was good with names). However, I think this was it: [EDIT: It’s not]

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Some of the stones had … interesting styles to them.

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And there were some interesting names.

My own name is on there … twice. (I used to hate my first name for being so common, but now I love it for being classic.)

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Then, as I was leaving the cemetery by way of the more modern section, I saw what must have been the cutest headstone I’ve ever seen:

If I weren’t going to be cremated, I’d want this stone.

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I can’t neglect to post my photos of First Church of Christ, an impressive and very New England structure that stands on the site of the town’s original meeting house—the place where Kit Tyler would have been bored by Sabbath services and later stood accused of witchcraft.

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The cemetery was my last real stop. I decided that I had seen enough and was ready to be on my way. As I was leaving town…

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. . . I decided to consult my trusty tourist map and try to find where Hannah Tupper’s cottage would have stood. Unfortunately, the location they gave is now an industrial park, and at this point my GPS got very confused and had me turn down a very random, unpaved road that went right through some farmland. But I looked to my left, and there I saw . . .

THE MEADOWS!

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It was all to easy to imagine Kit Tyler running through those grasses and meeting Hannah there.

A perfect end to this wonderful visit to a world of fact and fiction.

13 thoughts on “Road Trip: Day 10—Wethersfield and “The Witch of Blackbird Pond” (Part Two of Two)

    • Thanks for the comment! Yes, it was so exciting to finally have the opportunity to see this place. There was a little P.S. in my edition of “Witch of Blackbird Pond” that mentioned the real Wethersfield, and ever since I read that I’ve wanted to visit. I’m glad you liked the photos!

        • You should absolutely do it! On my way IN to New England I passed through Old Saybrook (which, in the book, is where Kit Tyler first sees Connecticut and where Nat Eaton’s “home base” of sorts is located). I didn’t have time to stop there, but my tour guide in Wethersfield said it was worth a look, so if you get the chance, you should go there too!

  1. This is so cool!!! I am so envious of your cemetery visit. And the meadows! Ahhh! Go confused GPS.

  2. Reblogged this on my beautiful machine / danseur ignoble and commented:
    Yay! My home town of Wethersfield, CT gets some love from Emily Jacobs in this post (which, admittedly, is now over 3 years old, but sometimes the wheels of the Blogosphere grind slowly, amirite?).

    She’s included some beautiful pictures from Old Wethersfield, most of which were taken 2 blocks from my Mom’s house.

    Old Weth is its own little universe, and I still love and miss it.

  3. Apologies for the thread necromancy — I was looking for some info on the history of the name “Hungry Hill” and stumbled across this post.

    I’m from Old Wethersfield (and my dad is buried in the Village Cemetery), and it’s lovely to see that someone out there in the Blog-O-Sphere has not only heard of my home town, but appreciates its old buildings and cemetery!

    Also, for the record, I agree with you that the Village Cemetery can be surprisingly creepy even in broad daylight, but I may be influenced by the zillions of childhood ghost stories with which my sister, our friends, and I routinely frightened each-other :)

    • No apologies necessary. I’m glad you found it! I have to update this post though, since a lot of the pictures seem to have vanished.
      I have/had several friends who live/lived in New England (present/past tense depends on the friend, as some have since moved), and I’ve made several road trips to visit. This post was from my first trip to Old Wethersfiend, and it was completely magical. I have actually passed through there at least 3 more times since I wrote this post–including in October, which was magical and creepy in a whole different way!

  4. Completely delightful! I felt as if I was right there with you. Fabulous post! Thanks for sharing your day! :)

  5. PS: the church with the patterened slate-tile roof is Trinity Episcopal, where I sang in the choir as a kid. It was designed by Edward Tuckerman Potter, the same gentleman who designed Samuel Clemens’ Hartford home. Regardless of its provenance, we used to call it “Funny Roof” when I was little.

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