Jay's Grave – Devon, England - Atlas Obscura

Jay's Grave

This grave resides at the crossroad of three parishes.  

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From the time she was born, Kitty Jay was abused, abandoned, and ostracized. Her life was one of torment.  Forgotten by those of her own time, her sad legacy is preserved by a single gravestone in Dartmoor, where she has rested alone for 200 years.

Mary Jay was abandoned by her mother in the late 18th-century and was given to an orphanage. She was given the surname J (stylized as Jay) because she was the 10th girl to arrive at the orphanage. Until her teens, Mary was content at the orphanage, living and taking care of the younger children, but living in disgrace as a penniless orphan.

When she grew older, she was sent to Canna farms near neighboring Manaton in Dartmoor to earn money. She was employed to work in the house as a maid and also in the field as a laborer. After a sexual assault occured, she became pregnant. She was then forced to leave the farm. With nowhere else to turn, she ended her life. She was refused burial at the churchs and was buried at the crossroads of three parishes.

Following her death, stories of haunting began immediately, as locals claimed a hooded figure often knelt by the grave in the moonlight. Legend asserts that her spirit haunts her grave and Dartmoor.

Know Before You Go

One mile Northwest of Hound Tor at the green lane to Natsworthy