Ghosts of the Old Burying Point Cemetery, Salem

Ghosts of the Old Burying Point Cemetery, Salem

The Old Buring Point

Salem is a small, historic town made infamous by its Witch Trials during the 1600s. These horrific events saw many people meaninglessly sent to their deaths and the town still bears the stains of its dark past to this day. The Old Burying Point Cemetery is one location where historic points of interest related to the trials can be found. It has become the final resting place for some notable people who had a strong influence over this notorious moment in time.

Salem Old Burying Point Cemetery.
The entrance to the supposedly haunted Old Burying Point in Salem.

The Old Burying Point Cemetery dates back to 1637 making it Salem’s oldest cemetery and even one of the oldest burial spaces in the US. Hundreds of weathered tombstones remain erect, poking through the ground, acting as a crumbling memory of the past and the people of Salem. It may come as no surprise that a location containing so many bodies from Salem’s past would come with a few ghost stories.

Haunted cemetery in Salem.
The haunted cemetery in Salem at night.

Ghosts of the Old Burying Point Cemetery

Perhaps one of the most notable individuals interred within the Old Burying Point is John Hathorne. Hathorne is best known and remembered as being a judge during the infamous Witch Trials. During this time, he gained his own notoriety for his involvement in the sentencing of supposed witches. This was to earn him the nickname the ‘Hanging Judge.’ Interestingly, Judge John Hathorne is actually rumored to be one of the spirits said to haunt the Old Burying Point Cemetery. His apparition is supposedly sighted so commonly that is has also shown up in a number of photographs that have been snapped within this spooky place.

Tombstones in Salem's most haunted cemetery.
Tombstones shaded by a skeletal appearing tree.

In addition to Hawthrone’s ghost making itself known, plenty of other reports of strange activity have managed to make their way out of the cemetery. Sighting visual anomalies such as unexplainable lights are common, as well as feeling sudden drops in the air temperature and even hearing disembodied voices.

Oldest cemetery in Salem the Old Burying Point.
The oldest and most haunted cemetery in Salem.

Strangely, the hauntings from those buried within the old cemetery have even spread to neighboring residences. Murphy’s Pub, which sits directly next door to the Old Burying Point, is said to have had some wandering spirits from the cemetery make their way through the property.

Murphy's pub haunted Salem.
Graves lined up beside Murphy’s Pub.

Visiting the Haunted Old Burying Point Cemetery

If you are ever in Salem, a visit to this historic cemetery is a must. It is a place of beauty, tranquility and great historical significance. Equally as important, is the site of the Salem Witch Trials Memorial, which is located directly next door to the cemetery. Though none of those who were sentenced to death during the trails are buried at the cemetery, it is still sobering to view their memorial and pay tribute to their lives, which were cut unfairly short.

Old Burying Point Cemetery most haunted cemetery in Salem.
Beautiful graves inside the Old Burying Point Cemetery in Salem.

If you enjoyed this article you might also like to learn of the other haunted places in Salem.

Thanks for reading!


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Amy is a world traveller and explorer of creepy locations. She has visited some of the most famously haunted places around the world in search of evidence of the paranormal. Follow Amy's Journey:

Comments (4)

  • Chalermchai Wattanawongpituk

    Posted by Chalermchai Wattanawongpituk on February 4, 2020

    Great story…I read that the original location of Salem was not where it is today..Did u take a snapshot at the cemetery n there’s a pic of a Hanging Judge on it…? XOXO…


      Posted by Amy on February 6, 2020

      I don’t believe I did, sorry. I do hope to go back to Salem some day.

  • Danielle

    Posted by Danielle on November 8, 2022

    His name is John Hathorne, not Hawthorne😊


      Posted by Amy on November 8, 2022

      Thank you, fixed.

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