What happened to the person buried under this gravestone on the UNBC Ghost Towns Tour?

One of the highlights on the UNBC Ghost Towns of Northwest BC educational tour is the visit to the cemetery.  It is probably one of the remotes cemeteries in BC as there are no year round residents anywhere near here and when you do it is almost impossible to find as it is tucked away in an overgrown forest.  One gravestone that stands out is the one below.  The first thing guests notice with the gravestone is that it has been turned over and huge whole remains below it.  There are a few  stories behind the overturned gravestone and I will let you decide which one is true.

1. The story goes that a middle aged woman of European descent who was quite wealthy was buried with many of her valuable treasures of Gold and Silver.  She was buried in 1911 and a rumour out there is that after 100 years of age gravestones are fair game to “retrieve” valuables.  The story goes,  that 100 years to the day she was buried,  a huge hole appeared below the gravestone and all the valuables were missing (or maybe never buried).

2. This story goes that the middle aged European woman had not been sleeping well and had decided to take a copious amount of sleeping pills and had passed out and gone into a mild coma.  With no Dr in the small remote community at the time, she was pronounced dead by the minister.  With winter fast approaching and the ground already freezing they had to dig a grave quickly and lay the body to rest without a coffin.  The lady was actually not dead and just feeling the effects of the sleeping pills and with the chunky frozen earth over top of her in the shallow  grave she was able to stay alive and dig her way out of the earth.

3. The story goes that a middle aged European died suddenly and her husband who was the love of her life was devastated.  He visited her grave site every day while living in Anyox.  When the town closed he moved back to his homeland in Europe but could not leave without being close to his beloved wife.  He applied and was granted approval to exhume her and take her back to the homeland where he could bury her again and visit her every day.

If you want want to know the most plausible answer, you can sign up for our Ghost Towns of Northwest BC tour Aug 21-27, 2016 where we will get to the bottom of this unsolved mystery!!

Mysterious Overturned Anyox Grave
Mysterious Overturned Anyox Grave
Where did the person buried here go?
Where did the person buried here go?


Ghostly Port Essington Cemetery

The 1871 salmon cannery community of Port Essington was founded by Robert Cunningham. He  quickly built this lower Skeena River place into a thriving town with many amenities for a such a small and remote community.  The town faded away in the mid 1900’s but within the at time many people were buried in the local cemetery.  During three of our Educational Travel Tours in 2016 we will visit the site.  Whether you are a ghost town guru, avid photographer or history  buff this visit will be one of the most unique site’s on the Northcoast.  The jungly, undulating forest on a rock outcrop is the final resting place for over a hundred Port Essington residents.  The elevated moss covered gravestones protrude through the lush coastal vegetation while the flat headstones have vanished below the carpet of moss.

Here are a few of my favorite headstones

Chinese Headstone at Port Essington
Port Essington moss covered headstone
The final spot for this person and their headstone

Meanskinisht Cemetery & Cedarvale

On our “Skeena River Historical Journey by Jet Boat” we will retrace the route of the mighty sternwheelers that navigated the Skeena River in  the late 1800’s and the early 1900’s.  The trip from Hazelton to Cassiar Cannery will focus a lot on the history and visiting some of the more interesting sites along the river.  One of the stops will be the community of Meanskinisht or Cedarvale as it is more commonly known as now.  Meanskinisht was founded in 1888 by Anglican Missionary Robert Tomlinson who had previously served at Metlakatla and Kincolith on the north coast. Tomlinson ran a very strict religious community which attracted first nations from around the region. The community was referred to as the “Holy City”.  Sundays were a day of rest and not even the Sternwheelers were welcome to stop to drop off mail on those days.  Robert Tomlinson’s wife was named Alice of which the name “Alice Arm” came from (coincidentally we visit Alice Arm on our Ghost Towns of Northwest BC Tour). We will have local community members Lyle and Mary Dahlen tour us through the Meanskinisht cemetery and the museum.

Meanskinisht Cemetery
Second Meanskinisht Church destroyed by by in 1950’s (Tomlinson Collection – Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine)
Gravesite of Alice and Robert Tomlinson in the Meanskinisht Cemetery
Gravesite of Alice and Robert Tomlinson in the Meanskinisht Cemetery

Port Essington Ghostly Cemeteries

If you have a passion for visiting cemteries and especially remote, overgrown, seldom visited  then our ghost towns trip is for you.   We will be visiting the Port Essington and Anyox Cemeteries.  Both of these are so remote and seldom visited that it is a bit of a challenge to even find the sites and when we do the moss and plants are taking over.  Here are a few photos.


Port Essington Cemetery
Eerie Gravestone
Port Essington graveyard
Moss covered
port essington head stone
Picket Fence
Multi cultural cemetery