In Barbados, there is a tomb named Chase Vault.The tomb is not as common graves we know it.The building is large and can contain many coffins in it.However, the mystery is not there.There are strange events that occurred in this tomb.It seems, coffin-coffin placed in it can move by itself.
This mystery is known as the coffin moved Barbados and has been the subject of several research papers.
It started in 1724.
In that year, a man named James Elliot to build a large underground tomb.Door of the tomb was made of a heavy marble and designed in a special way.Because of heavy rock, it takes about 6-7 people to move it.
When the tomb was closed, a large crack in the marble that will be cemented so as not easy to open.If one day the door of the tomb is about to be opened again to bury someone, then the cement must be erased again.After the funeral process is complete, the marble was moved and must be cemented back.
Thus the tomb was designed in such a way.
Inner Chase Vault
Although it has struggled to build it, Elliot was never buried in the place.The place was left empty until the date of July 31, 1807 when Mrs.Thomasina Goddard was buried in that place.Mrs.Goddard corpse laid in a wooden coffin.
In 1808, the tomb was bought by the Chase family, a family of wealthy and respected in Barbados.Because of changes in ownership, the tomb was later given the name of the Chase Vault, which means the Chase family tomb.
Thomas Chase, Chase family leader, was one of the most hated in Barbados.According to one record in people's almanac:
"The head of the family is someone who has a bad disposition, he was so cruel to his slaves so that they often threatened to kill him."
On February 22, 1808, the youngest child named Mary Ann Thomas Chase 2-year-old died and his body was taken to the Chase Vault for burial.
Door of the tomb was opened, Mary Ann coffin made of heavy tin and then brought into it and placed beside the coffin Mrs.Goddard.
Chase Vault doors were closed again with the big marble and cemented.
After the death of Mary Ann, slowly, Chase Vault began to be filled by the Chase family members of other bodies.
On July 6, 1812, only 5 years after the death of Mary Ann, Son Thomas the other by the name of Dorcas Chase, also died.Some people say that Dorcas had committed suicide by hunger strike because of depression with his father.
Dorcas's corpse was taken to Chase Vault and casket are also made of heavy tin put in place with Mrs.Goddard coffin and Mary Ann.
Just a few weeks after the burial Dorcas, Mr.Thomas Chase, the head of the family, died from suicide.His body was put into the coffin of lead weighing 108 pounds and was taken to Chase Vault.
This was the beginning of a perplexing mystery.
When the door of the tomb was opened, the undertaker was shocked to find dead crates existing in it are at an improper position.Mary Ann Chase coffin was shifted to the other corner.
Chase Family members who saw it became very upset and thought there tomb raider who has been messing coffin-coffin.However, they did not find anything missing from the grave.
Mary Ann's casket and then returned to its original position and Chase Vault door back closed.
But the mystery does not end here.
On September 25, 1816, four years after the funeral of Thomas Chase, the tomb was re-opened.This time to accommodate the body of Charles Brewster Ames who was 11 years old.
Once again, they found all the coffins had been on the move, including the coffin of Thomas Chase is very heavy.The only coffin that has not changed position only wooden coffin Mrs.Goddard property.
The officer then ordered that the funeral-coffin coffin was returned to its original position.I was so heavy coffin Thomas Chase, it takes eight men to improve their position.
Chase Vault back entrance sealed.
52 days later, on November 17, 1816, Chase Vault door re-opened.This time to receive the body of Samuel Brewster Ames.
Once again, the undertaker found the coffin-coffin in it has changed position.And just as before, Mrs.Goddard wooden coffin is the only coffin that do not migrate.
So, for the third time they returned all the coffins were returned to its original position.
Three years later, on July 17, 1819, the tomb was re-opened to receive the body of Thomasina Clark.Unlike the previous coffin, corpse Clark put in wooden coffins.
When the door of the tomb was opened, they recovered a coffin-coffin in it was in a messy position.
Four of these mysterious events and attract the attention of the governor of Barbados, Lord Combermere, who was mentioned Clark attended the funeral.
The Governor then ordered the thorough examination of the tomb.But not found any signs of vandalism or secret path towards the grave.
Thus, the coffin-coffin again prepared as before.
Mr.Goddard coffin made of wood has weathered extraordinary that people tie casket with rope to prevent loose mess and then put them in contact with the wall corner.
After that, the tomb of sand sprinkled on the floor to detect any footprints.
Then Chase Vault door back closed.this time not only closed, Lord Combermere even sealed the door of the tomb with a seal of the governor.
April 18, 1820, eight months after burial Thomasina Clark, Chase Vault re-opened, not to accept a new body, but to meet the demand of Lord Combermere who want to know the conditions inside the tomb.
When the door of the tomb is opened, once again, all the coffins in it has moved position.And just like before-before, Mrs.Goddard wooden coffin was the only one who did not move.
Position after review
Not seen any footprints in the sand on the floor of the tomb.
How coffin-coffin can move?
Those who examined him found no signs that this is caused by human hands.they also found no remains of standing water or flooding that might shift the coffin-coffin.Some people propose the possibility of an earthquake, but in that time span, not an earthquake in Barbados.
Because the investigation is carried out does not bring any results, the Chase family decided not to use the tomb again.Chase Vault and then be ignored and the coffin-coffin in it removed and buried elsewhere.
The tomb still exists today and left empty.
The story about the coffin moved Barbados was first published by Sir JE Alexander in his book entitled "Transatlantic Sketches", published in 1833.After that, there are still some more writings that tell the story about this mystery.
In December 1907, Andrew Lang, a researcher on folk tales from England to try to investigate the truth of this story.He worked a number of documents originating from Barbados, including burial records and local newspapers.
Lang could not find any news about this phenomenon in the newspaper or cemetery records at the time of this event is happening.However, he found one unpublished notes from Nathan Lucas, who claims to be a witness when the Chase Vault was opened for the last time in 1820.
Lang, could not provide definitive conclusions.
The next research effort comes from a modern writer named Joe Nickell through his book "Barbados restless coffins laid to rest" which was published in 1982.
Nickell believes that the events that move the coffin at all never happened.According to him, this story is just a Masonic Hoax.
The point is, this story is just an allegory that contains stories about the secret room that according to Masonic texts are ancient mystery, a symbol of death in which Divine truth can be found.
Nickell connecting the casket story moves with the Oak Island treasure mystery that is also believed to be a Masonic another Hoax.
Just like any other Masonic allegory, the story is believed to only be made by the Masons as a symbolic story that never happened in the real world and is only intended as an instruction for members of other Freemasons.
Nickell also cited evidence comes from the words of Lucas:
"I've checked all the walls, curve and every part of the Chase Vault and find that every part of old age and the like; and a masons (Mason) in every part of me hitting the bottom of the tomb with his gavel, and it was all solid."
One of the quotes about the sound the hammer can be found at Macoy's Illustrated History and Encyclopedia of Freemasonry in which it is said that the Masons honor the Masters hammer pounding sound that symbolizes authority.
Still according to Nickell, use of the word "Mason" to refer to a mason by Lucas quite interesting.Nickell suspect that Lucas himself was a Mason who participated in making it an allegory.
Nickell also believe that other famous Masons participated in this allegory the story and helped cover it up, like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle ever discuss the Chase Vault in the 1919 article in the newspaper "The Strand".In the article, Doyle uses the word "Effluvia" which means the grave.
The word, generally only understood by the Masons.
Nickell theory regarded as the most plausible explanation of this mystery.
However, outside the usual, although this story is considered a hoax, similar mystery is never happened in the tomb in Stanton, Suffolk, and at the funeral Oesel Lutherian on the small island in the Baltic sea.Both mysteries are equally occur in the 19th century and equally unresolved.