Did the Mysterious Ticking Tomb Near Landenberg Inspire an Edgar Allan Poe Short Story?

Image via the Chester County Press.

The ticking tomb near Landenberg, a mysterious grave that is one of the most famous and enduring local legends, is an ideal place to visit during the Halloween season, writes Steven Hoffman for the Chester County Press.

Tales of the ticking tomb at the small graveyard adjacent to the London Tract Meeting House have been shared in the area for more than two centuries. Some even believe that it inspired Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart.”

The legend begins when Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon arrived in the area to mark definite borders between colonies. During that time, a local youth named Fithian Minuit is said to have grabbed and swallowed Mason’s portable chronometer. This upset the surveyor enough to put a curse on the boy.

Minuit went on to marry the daughter of a sea captain, who first noticed the steady ticking in his chest. They agreed it would symbolize their love for each other.

The pair lived a happy life together. When they died, the legend claims that the chronometer continued to tick away, marking their eternal love.

Read more about the ticking tomb in the Chester County Press here.

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