The Lane Family Tomb

By John M. Holman, Contributing Writer

April 15, 2000

The Lane Family Tomb
[Photo courtesy Jewell Sherburne Brown]

The tomb is located in the woods off White's Lane (east of Mill Road) and as the story goes, was used during a Small-Pox outbreak in Hampton during the 1700s. [See Dow's History of Hampton, NH, Chapter 12, Part 8 regarding Small-Pox in Hampton.]

Originally, it had a steel door on the front, probably locked by the Lane family. As the years went by, the lock was removed from the door, and children played around and inside the tomb. The games they played in the vicinity are not appropriate to mention in this article, but let your imagination run a little wild here.

In many later years, animals would get into the tomb through the open door, which necessitated the building of a concrete wall in front of the tomb, obliterating the open door. However, it appears from the photo below, that this concrete wall was not substantial enough to withstand someone cutting a hole in the center with either chisels or pick-axes, and using it as a "playhouse" still years later.

Photo taken in 2000
4-foot square cement block in place.
[Photo by author, taken in 2000]

The final stage came when a 4-foot square cement block was placed in front of the hole in the concrete wall to seal off forever, any vandalism to the contents of the tomb.

However, sometime later, the roof caved in together with a huge boulder, leaving a gaping hole in the top dropping to a 6-foot drop to the bottom of the tomb. Another slab of concrete on top is now in the position of sliding down to the bottom, with a large, tall tree still implanted on this slab of concrete, which makes for a very dangerous condition.

It is hoped that the owners of this piece of property will take the necessary steps to fill in the tomb (there is no evidence of any human remains left in the tomb) or level it, before some child falls into the open hole and gets seriously hurt or worse.

Photo shows inside tomb, looking through collapsed roof.
Looking down through collapsed roof at original door opening.
[Photo by author, taken in 2000]