Lords of Salem
Jacob Rust Store
216-220 Essex Street
This building was built for the Salem Commons Improvement Fund subscriber Jacob Rust in 1801. This is the first storefront from the time of Elias Hasket Derby Jr’s tenure at digging tunnels that was connected. Jacob rust had owned Rust Wharf that had a prison ship docked there from 1812 to 1815 during the War with England. Where I grew up in NJ there was this Chinese house. Who ever bought it bought the restaurant with it. It was a package deal. Only thing cooler in Salem was, when you bought the house you got to walk through a tunnel to work. The Jacob Rust house on the corner of Hamilton and Essex Street was also connected to the tunnel along with his neighbor on Beckford Street. Next door on Essex Street is the house Rob Zombie’s wife’s apartment in Lords of Salem.
Now the the Jacob Rust store is owned by Cabot Money Management. The Cabot Farm in north Salem is a private place on a public road owned by Cabot Money Management’s owners. Orne’s Point was bought by Joseph Cabot. Joseph Sebastian Cabot (October 8, 1796 – June 29, 1874) was a Massachusetts banker and politician who served as the fourth Mayor of Salem, Massachusetts.Cabot was president of the Asiatic Bank,the Salem Savings Bank, and the Massachusetts Horticultural Society that resided in Greenlawn Cemetery. He was also the Massachusetts State Bank Commissioner.
Now Lords of Zombie was filmed in the Greenlawn Cemetery too, but they did not get to film in the coolest part. In the basement of the chapel there is three tunnels. One leading to Orne’s Point. The one heading north opens up to a chamber that was once used to house corpses in the winter. The one heading southeast heads toward Manning’s house where Hawthorne and his mother used to live. Manning had owned part of the cemetery for hi nursery. This tunnel terminates on an old staircase.
If you are caught walking on that public road with its public park and you wake up the Cabot’s guard rooster you are in trouble. Someone from their house will drive up and down the road and they will call the police. That public road is badly humped from the erosion of the tunnel leading from the chapel in Green Lawn Cemetery to their field. Then in their field you can see further erosion as a path raises out of a marsh and then forks to their homes. The path exposes the two tunnels leading to their homes on the farm. The homes have several secret passages in them I am told. Plus they have easy access to the North River where they could land goods to smuggle into town. Or at least the Orne’s Could.
On this lot was a widow desperate for income who started a brick yard. Could she of been making bricks for the smugglers? Timothy Pickering ordered 200,000 from her. Mr. Orne who the Orne’s Point is named after had Richard Derby and George Crowninshield start off their careers in his counting house. He also had a famous tavern here at one point.
Rust’s store displays the regular exterior chimneys that can be found on most homes connected by the tunnels. It’s the first brick store front from the time of the Salem Commons Improvement Fund subscribers secret tunnel digging expedition and below are pictures of the sealed up entrances.
Get the book everyone digs before its sequel comes out!
Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
Available at Barnes & Noble, Remember Salem, and Wicked Good Books in Salem on Essex Street. Also on Amazon.com!
Then for a great time take the Salem Smugglers’ Tour to find out all of the secrets one can dig up in town!