Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Grave of the Female Stranger

The grave of the Female Stranger, in Alexandria, Virginia, remains a place of romance and mystery. 

In 1816, a young couple arrived in the port town.  The beautiful young woman soon tragically died of an illness and was buried in a grave bearing these strange words:
"To the memory of a Female Stranger
Whose mortal suffering terminated on the 4th day of October, 1816 Aged 23 years, and 8 months.
"This stone is erected by her disconsolate husband in whose arms she sighed out her latest breath, and who under God did his utmost to soothe the cold dull hour of death.
"How loved, how honor'd once avails thee not, To whom related or by whom begot, A heap of dust remains of thee
'Tis all thou art, and all the proud shall be."

All of the town folk who interacted with the couple swore themselves to secrecy as to the identity of the Female Stranger.  They honorably kept the trust, and the identity of the young woman remains a mystery to this day.  Who was she?  A thwarted young lover? A European royal?  Might she have been the missing Theodosia Burr Alston?  The mystery remains.

The ghost of the Female Stranger is said to haunt Room 8 in Gadsby’s Tavern where she died.

The Female Stranger: An Archibald Mercer Colonial Detective mystery

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