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Harrisville Cemetery

Harrisville, Rhode Island 02830 USA

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“AKA Rhode Island Historical Cemetery Burrillville #26”

This old graveyard is the final resting place of Bathsheba Sherman, an alleged witch made famous by the movie The Conjuring. Here's what History Vs Hollywood has to say about the real-life Bathsheba: "The most haunting spirit in the movie is that of suspected witch Bathsheba Sherman. Born Bathsheba Thayer in Rhode Island in 1812, she married fellow Rhode Islander Judson Sherman (one year her senior) in Thompson, Connecticut on March 10, 1844. The two were married by Vernon Stiles, a local Justice of the Peace. Bathsheba filled the role of housewife while her husband Judson worked as a farmer on their land. Fairly well-off, Bathsheba and Judson had a son, Herbert L. Sherman, born when Bathsheba was approximately 37 years of age in March of 1849. It is possible that they had three other children as well, all of whom did not survive past the age of seven, though no census records could be found to confirm these reports. The family also usually took in a boarder, most likely to help them on the farm. There is no hard evidence to support that Bathsheba Sherman was really a witch, only legend and local folklore. Having lived on a neighboring farm in the 1800s, suspicion grew when an infant mysteriously died in her care. When the baby was examined, it was determined that the mortal wound was caused by a large sewing needle that had been impaled at the base of the child's skull. Though the townspeople believed that Bathsheba sacrificed the infant as an offering to the devil, due to insufficient evidence a court found that she was innocent of any wrongdoing. Despite her name being cleared legally, the public was not convinced. In her book House of Darkness House of Light, Andrea Perron describes her mother Carolyn talking to a man who she refers to as "Mr. McKeachern." Supposedly a bit of a local historian, Mr. McKeachern told Carolyn that Bathsheba treated the help badly and that she starved and beat her Sherman Farm staff. In researching The Conjuring true story, we discovered that the suspected witch Bathsheba Sherman died as an old woman on May 25, 1885, roughly four years after her husband Judson Sherman's death in 1881. Bathsheba lived to see her son Herbert, a farmer like his father, marry his fiancée Anna in 1881. Various articles online will have you believe that her body "literally turned to stone" when she died, or that Bathsheba died from "a bizarre form of paralysis" that puzzled and frightened doctors. Their basis is never more than legend and local folklore (or internet rumors), and these same articles often state that Bathsheba had four children, all of whom died before reaching the age of four. However, U.S. government census records contradict this since we know that Bathsheba had a son, Herbert L. Sherman, who lived a long life as a farmer and had a family of his own. As for her three other children, we could only find an unofficial record of there existence on a public internet family tree that lists there names as Julia (born in 1845), Edward (born in 1847) and George (born in 1853). It is possible that they died before the next census was conducted. -Ancestry.com The grave site of Bathsheba Sherman (pictured above) is located in the historic cemetery across the street from the fire station and rotary in downtown Harrisville, Rhode Island (near the start of Sherman Farm Road)." -http://www.historyvshollywood.com/reelfaces/conjuring.php

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Harrisville Cemetery

Harrisville, Rhode Island
02830 USA

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