[MA] Tyngsboro – The Haunting of John Alford Tyng

Sign near Tyng Mansion ruins.John Alford Tyng does not rest in peace. He’s pursued by the ghost of Judith Thompson. Tyng secretly married and murdered her, and then buried her in an unmarked grave.

This true ghost story is one of several connected with the Tyng Mansion. Today the house is gone, but the site is marked with a sign (at right) and evidence of a foundation and front stairs.

Nearby, in the Tyng family cemetery, John Alford Tyng’s grave may be proof that he died a cursed man.

John Alford Tyng was a ne’er do well, even by Tyng standards. The Tyngs had always been a wealthy, self-indulgent family. Generally, their interests also served the community, but John Alford Tyng was clearly the black sheep of the family.

Tyng Family Tree
Edward Tyng (born in England)
|
Jonathan Tyng
|
Eleazar Tyng
|
John Alford Tyng

Edward Tyng was born in was born in Dunstable, England, in 1610 and came to the American colonies in 1639.

He purchased 3000 acres in Massachusetts, and named the area “Dunstable” after his birthplace.

(Many years later Dunstable was divided into three towns: Dunstable and Tyngsboro, Massachusetts, and Nashua, New Hampshire.)

Edward’s grandson, Eleazar Tyng, was a colonel in the Colonial militia. Eleazar married Sarah Alford, and John Alford Tyng was among their five children.

John Alford Tyng's birth record

The trouble began when John Alford Tyng met Judith Thompson. Judith was the daughter of Ezra Thompson, who provided land for a church and the town meetinghouse.

(Source: A history of the Town of Dunstable, MA, by Rev. Elias Nasson, ©1877, p. 142)

Describing one church district, a town history says,”All the Second Parish on the great road from Mr. Ezra Thompson’s to Hollis up to Salmon Brook, living on, and to north of said road.” So, the Thompsons probably lived on the Great Road in Dunstable.

Judith was known as one of the most beautiful women in New England. She sometimes worked at the Tyng Mansion, helping with their large parties, and soon caught the eye of John Alford Tyng.

Tyng made advances towards Judith Thompson, but–being raised in a religious family–she insisted on marriage. Tyng felt that he couldn’t marry a servant, and he was already engaged to an heiress in Boston anyway.

Tyng solved the problem with a pretend marriage.

“Dr. Blood” (no relation to the Blood family) was an itinerant physician in northern Colonial New England. He was also a drunkard, a thief and a con artist.

Dr. Blood treated his patients, knocked them unconscious, and robbed them. Then, he left them by the side of the road. When they woke up, he was gone and so was their money.

Tyng hired Dr. Blood to pretend to be a minister and marry the couple. Then, John Alford Tyng moved Judith into his new home in Dunstable (now Nashua, NH) a few miles from Tyng Mansion.

Judith soon gave birth to a child, and then another, and finally a third child was on the way.

Some say that John Alford Tyng had squandered his money and felt overburdened by his young family. Others suggest that Tyng was insanely jealous of others’ attentions to Judith, who grew more beautiful each year.

Tyng hired his old friend Dr. Blood to kill Judith and the children. Tyng waited in another room while the deed was done, and then buried his family under the hearth. That’s when Tyng’s problems really began.

Next: Judith Thompson returned from the grave to claim the lives of both Dr. Blood and her murdering husband, in our article, Judith Thompson – a vengeful ghost.

8 thoughts on “[MA] Tyngsboro – The Haunting of John Alford Tyng”

    1. Hi James, I am reading this 5 years after it was posted and I am also very curious and intrigued by your photo and the ghost stories

  1. I can copy and send you this photo if you e-mail me an address to send it to. I was brought up and played around the mansion all my life i have many stories to tell I was also intervied some time ago on the haunting of the Church at the Tyngsboro Bridge area with inside edition.

    (Email address removed to protect privacy.)

    1. James, I’m very interested. Use my regular email address: fiona [at] HollowHill.com. I’m also interested in the haunting at the church. That’s a story I’ve heard people refer to, and I’ve been looking for someone with first-person knowledge of the ghost stories. Cheerfully, Fiona

  2. Hi James,
    I live up the road (Hudson NH) from the once Tyng mansion, I drive by the cemetery and mansion location, almost every day going to work. Reading the Tyng ghost story and it’s history, interests me, a lot, as well as my grand kids and friends, any related stories, I would appreciate.also would love to see the photo of the mansion before the fire.

    Sincerely,
    George Mackey

    1. Hi, George, and thanks for asking about this.

      You’ll see one photo at the 2010 article from the Nashua Telegraph: http://www.nashuatelegraph.com/livingtravel/895332-224/murdered-wife-haunts-tyng-mansion-resident-until.html.

      Of course, that’s how the house looked after it had been remodeled several times, but it’s probably one of the more recent, pre-fire photos.

      The photo with this article – http://patch.com/massachusetts/andover/lecture-local-history-tyng-mansion-project-three-vignettes-0 – is far older. Nevertheless, it’s still a much larger house than the original probably was, back when the Tyngs first moved to that location.

      Cheerfully,
      Fiona

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments Protected by WP-SpamShield Spam Filter