Wilton, NH – Vale End’s ‘Blue Lady’ Ghost

vale end cemetery
The “Blue Lady” gravestone, Vale End Cemetery, Wilton, NH.

New Hampshire’s ghosts are among our specialties at Hollow Hill, but this is one ghost story that we removed from our website for several years. Now, we’ve decided to reveal everything that we know about the ghosts — and possibly demons — at Wilton’s beautiful Vale End Cemetery.

The ‘Blue Lady’ is one of Vale End’s most famous ghosts. We’ve never seen her, but we’ve sensed her many times. Her headstone, shown in the photo at the top of this article, is broken but still majestic. It bears her maiden name — Mary Ritter — as well as the married name of her widower’s second wife, Mary Spaulding. (The second Mary Spaulding was Mrs. Mary Flynn Colburn before her marriage to Isaac Spaulding.)

Mary Ritter Spaulding was the mother of seven children between her April 1795 marriage, and her April 1808 death. Her husband, Isaac Spaulding, was a tanner and a descendant of an early Jamestown settler.

According to folklore, Mary Ritter Spaulding was a good, church-going woman who healed with herbs and prayer. No one is certain why she haunts Vale End Cemetery (and possibly Langdell House, where she may have lived), but her appearance is dramatic.

Many Wilton, NH, residents have seen Mary Ritter Spaulding as ‘the Blue Lady’ over her grave. She appears on warm, foggy nights, especially in the spring and fall, especially around Halloween.

According to one witness, she manifests as a bright, pale blue column of light, similar to a transporter beam in the TV show, Star Trek.

The column of light is about three feet wide, and starts a foot or two over her grave. It is about six feet tall. It seems to vibrate with energy.

(However, when I asked the witness whether the light vanished abruptly or faded away, he looked at me with amusement and replied, “I don’t know. We were having an egg fight.”)

We’ve checked nearby roads, houses, and outbuildings, and there is no logical reason for this column of light to appear at all, much less as often as reported.

Real ghosts’ stories – Notes from the other side

Mary Ritter Spaulding remembers her life as a series of pregnancies, during which she was uneasy about something that she never defined. When her last child was born, it was a turning point for her. However, while genealogical records show Lyman (born 1806) as her youngest child, she insists that James was her last.

We have found no records of a son named James, and perhaps that has something to do with her haunting.

Since her death, there has been something — perhaps a lie — that she has not resolved. I’m not sure if it was her own deceit, or a lie that someone told to (or about) her. She seems to be more troubled than angry or upset.

Vale End landscape, Wilton, NH
Vale End Cemetery, around 2003.

However, Mary Ritter Spaulding is not alone at Vale End Cemetery, and she may remain there to defend her family — or perhaps the living — from less pleasant spirits at Vale End and nearby Wilton, NH.

One more note about the grave of ‘the Blue Lady’ is important to note: From time to time, people perform Vodun-style rituals at her headstone. Near it, you may see shiny coins or other evidence of this. Please do not remove anything from her grave; that would be disrespectful and… well, it’s inviting trouble.

Next, real-life ghost encounters, and a list of the other spirits at Vale End Cemetery: More ghosts at NH’s Vale End Cemetery.

11 thoughts on “Wilton, NH – Vale End’s ‘Blue Lady’ Ghost”

  1. my best friend tyler went ther after curfew and his friend found a tenis ball by her grave. he threw the ball into the bushes right next to her grave. less than 3 mins. later the ball rolled back to in front of her grave. good luck if you visit. dont go alone

  2. my moms closest friend growing up is related to the blue lady. the blue lady is her second aunt i dont think of her as creepy but as part of the family.

    1. My mother has been doing our genealogy for years and found out we are related to her husband Capt, Spaulding, just read this article….weird to find out who you are related too.

      1. Genealogy can be fascinating, especially when you discover a family connection with a ghost story. Thanks for sharing this information, Erick!

  3. There is a good story that goes around about Mary Spaulding…(the blue lady).
    The story goes that she was the daughter of a rich father and the sister to 7 children…while her father was dying it was said that she went around the house and brutally hacked all her siblings to death in order to inherit her fathers fortune. The townspeople found out and soon after hung her in Vale End Cemetary.
    lol just the story but it truly adds to the scary ghost factor.

    1. That’s a great story, ConMan, but far removed from the truth. (Then again, you probably knew that since you said your email address is “[email protected]”)

      Mary Spaulding (or Spalding, like the Whitefield, NH inn owned by Jason Hawes & Grant Wilson & their families) was a lovely woman, and very religious according to contemporary stories. She was known for risking her own health to visit families and help the sick and elderly, and perhaps that contributed to her early, tragic death.

  4. Another story on why she haunts vale end is this….Apparently after Mary Ritter’s death which was of unknown causes..her husband married another mary. Her name was mary spaulding. To save money after spauldings death the husband buried Mary Spaulding on top of Mary Ritter…Hence the name on the headstone Mary Ritter/Spaulding….her name was not Mary Ritter Spaulding….

    1. Connor,

      You’re correct about the two wives named Mary, but I don’t think you’ve read my other article, The Blue Lady Haunts NH’s Vale End Cemetery.

      Speaking about the gravestone, I said, “It bears her maiden name–Mary Ritter–as well as the married name of her widower’s second wife, Mary Spaulding. (The second Mary Spaulding was, before her marriage to Isaac Spaulding, Mrs. Mary Flynn Colburn.)”

      In other words, her name was Mary Ritter Spaulding. She was born Mary Ritter, and married Isaac Spaulding.

      The second wife was Mary Flynn Colburn Spaulding.

      Also, there’s nothing parsimonious about the entire family — including both wives — being buried in the same family plot. It’d be strange if a wife wasn’t buried with the rest of the family.


  5. Fiona,
    I think that removing something from a cemetery is about as low as you can get.I also think that someone is really asking for trouble by doing so,especially at Vale End.

  6. Wasn’t there a rod iron fence around the grave? In the 1980s I would go there with friends and remember a waist high black iron fence around the grave.

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