The Chase Vault – Oistins, Barbados - Atlas Obscura

The Chase Vault

Christ Church Parish Church
Oistins, Barbados

A Barbados crypt where it's said that the coffins refuse to stay put. 


The Chase Vault located in the Barbados cemetery of the Christ Church Parish is a fairly unremarkable semi-sunken tomb save for the repeated stories of the coffins inside being thrown around around by mysterious forces. 

The vault was originally built in 1724 but was purchased by the Chase family when Mary Ann Chase died at the tender age of 2. The little girl was placed in the vault in a lead coffin along with the vault’s single other occupant who was interred in a wooden coffin. Just a few short years later Mary Ann’s sister Dorcas was also buried in the tomb after starving herself to death.

Death continued to plague the Chase family when the sisters’ father Thomas died around a month after his eldest daughter. However, when the thick marble slab that sealed the entrance to the vault was removed, the burial team discovered that the three coffins inside had been violently tossed around and were standing against the walls of the tomb in seeming disarray. There was no evidence of human tampering with the sealed vault, and none of the other vaults in the cemetery had been affected in the same way, eliminating the possibility of earthquake or flood. Regardless, all of the coffins were placed back in their original places and Thomas’ was added to the orderly pile.

Years later when the vault was once again opened to add another body to the pile, they found the coffins had been tossed around once again and were lying all about the vault. This time, before resealing the seemingly watertight and impenetrable space, a layer of sand was placed on the floor to detect any footprints should the culprits return again. After a couple of years, with the story percolating among the public, the vault was reopened to check on things, and as the story goes, it was revealed in front of throngs of curious onlookers that the coffins had once again been moved around.

At this point, all of the coffins were removed from the vault and reburied elsewhere in the cemetery. The empty vault remains open to this day, filled only with ghost stories. However with no coffins to toss around, any malevolent spirit (or committed prankster) may have a hard time making themselves known. 

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