Sea Glass Restaurant at Inn by the Sea, Cape Elizabeth, Maine – Visit June 30, 2015
In July of 1807, young bride-to-be Lydia Carver sailed from Portland to Boston to find the perfect dress for her impending nuptials. Sadly, on her trip home the sea was unexpectedly rough and the ship wrecked just before midnight on rocks not 50 feet from shore. Sixteen persons were lost, including the would-be bride. Sometime during the night, Lydia’s lifeless body washed ashore on Crescent Beach, just south of what is now the Inn by the Sea, as did the trunk containing her wedding dress.
Intrigued by this tragic tale of love and loss, we headed to Sea Glass Restaurant for breakfast. The restaurant, which has a spectacular ocean view, is elegant and features fresh, local ingredients on the menu. I enjoyed the Mediterranean Scramble (scrambled eggs with spinach, tomato, kalamata olives and feta cheese) and my partner-in-crime had a designer omelet. Delicious! After breakfast, we strolled over to the tiny cemetery next to the Inn where Lydia and several of her doomed companions are buried. The inscription on Lydia’s gravestone reads:
“Sacred to the Memory of Miss Lydia Carver daughter of Mr. Amos Carver of Freeport, Æ [age] 24: who with 15 other unfortunate passengers, male & female, perished in the merciless waves by the shipwreck of the Schooner Charles, Capt. Jacob Adams, bound from Boston to Portland on a reef of rocks near the shore of Richmond’s Island on Sunday night July 12, 1807.”
Lydia’s sad spirit is sometimes seen on Crescent Beach or walking the grounds of the Inn, but she also haunts the Inn itself and stories of otherworldly mischief are not hard to find. Guests have reported seeing a woman in white and having personal items inexplicably relocated within their rooms. Occasionally, late at night, the elevator car descends to the lobby with no one inside and table settings in the restaurant are rearranged after hours by hands unseen. Those who have encountered Lydia describe her as a gentle or calming presence.
Next time you find yourself in southern Maine, stop in and pay your respects to Lydia. You can find Inn by the Sea and Sea Glass Restaurant at:
40 Bowery Beach Road
Cape Elizabeth, ME 04107
Phone: (207) 799-3134
To find more haunted eateries in this area, visit our Maine page.