Ephraim Huit Grave – Windsor, Connecticut - Atlas Obscura

Ephraim Huit Grave

The oldest headstone in Connecticut. 


The headstone of Ephraim Huit is inscribed with the year 1644. It is not the oldest grave or the first burial in the country, but it is the oldest surviving headstone in Connecticut and believed to be the oldest legible, dated headstone in the United States.

The inscription reads: “Heere Lyeth Ephraim Hvit. Sometimes Teache’r to y chvrch of Windsor who dyed September 4, 1644. Who when hee lived wee drew ovr vitall breath. Who when hee dyed his dying was our death. Who was y tay of State ye churches staff. Alas the times forbides an Epitaph.”

Ephraim Huit (or Hewitt) was a minister and thus a man of stature within his community. He supervised the building of the town meetinghouse and the construction of a bridge to join communities.

The “box-tomb” grave marker is carved from Sandstone. The carver’s identity is unknown but is often attributed to Matthew Griswold. The large, flat top extends out further than the box base, like a tabletop, and the inscribed stone is set slightly back into the base. This has helped to shield the lettering from the weather.

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February 12, 2024

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