Mysteries Surround East Granby’s Smallpox Cemetery

Volume 15 Issue 2 Summer 2008

A Relic of an Eighteenth-Century Scourge

Many themes and mysteries surround the disappearance of the headstones from the East Granby Smallpox Cemetery on Hatchet Hill: in the 18th century, a dreaded disease and a grandfather and his four grandchildren isolated on a hill – in the 20th century, an eccentric stone collector; an expanding quarry, a church that became a workshop and, later, a house; a landowner who cared about the cemetery and a high sheriff who didn’t; a junior high student who was curious; and a historian and grandfather who learned about them all and resolved to tell the story; and, finally, to place a monument at the site to honor the dead and remind Metacomet Trail hikers who walk by of what transpired 225 years ago.

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