As Adam Honeyman begins digging into the foundations of his home, he has no idea what he’s about to come across. But with his trusty dog by his side, a simple excavation job suddenly becomes something far spookier. For as he digs into the dirt, a chilling object is unearthed. And soon the police are racing to his home…
Adam Honeyman lives in Tasmania, Australia, with his family. And in February 2016 this regular guy realized that some renovations needed to be done on his house in order to reinforce its structural integrity. Luckily, Honeyman is no stranger to hard work and manual labor.
Indeed, in his day-to-day life, Honeyman runs his own cafe, which he spent two years building before opening it to the public. But construction knowhow wasn’t all that would be required of him that February day.
First, however, Honeyman had to begin the process of underpinning his house in order to stabilize the foundations, which meant digging underneath it. Still, thanks to the excavator he’d acquired, it looked to be a relatively simple task.
Initially, everything seemed to be going pretty well. Honeyman’s daughter got involved, and even his dog tried to help out. But as the pooch started to dig into the earth herself, she uncovered something mysterious – and alarming.
Indeed, his pet had discovered what looked like a bone. Honeyman, however, thought nothing of it and continued to dig away at the dirt. Yet it wasn’t long before more and more mysterious objects began to appear among the rubble.
Even more alarmingly, these objects weren’t just any old bones. In fact, they appeared to be fragments of a skull. And as they kept going deeper into the dirt, more pieces arose, to the point that the digging process had to be slowed down.
Eventually, Honeyman felt the need to halt the dig entirely while he figured out what to do with his chilling find. After all, what had begun as a simple excavation had actually unearthed dozens of pieces of what seemed to be a human skull.
Indeed, one of the fragments that had emerged was quite clearly a human jawbone. Even the teeth were mostly still intact. At this point, then, Honeyman decided that he had no choice but to involve the police.
As the Honeyman family waited for the police to arrive, they took a closer look at their mysterious discoveries. They soon realized, too, that among the debris were bones of all kinds, not just skull fragments. Indeed, it looked like there was even a knuckle in the gruesome pile.
When the police finally arrived, they immediately began debating what the remains might be. The most pressing matter, however, was figuring out whether the bones were actually human or not. And according to Honeyman, “No one trusted anyone else to make the call.”
Eventually, though, the officers confirmed that, yes, the bones that had been unearthed were indeed human remains. As a result, a forensics team was called in to further examine Honeyman’s extraordinary find.
When the forensics squad arrived, they got to work taking pictures of everything that had been dug up. And once they’d finished doing so, they took the remains away, presumably for closer examination in a laboratory environment.
Despite this whirlwind of activity, however, one key question remained. Namely, why were the bones there in the first place? Had the Honeymans’ home once been the site of a gruesome murder? Or was there a less creepy explanation that might allay their fears?
As it transpired, no murders had been committed on the property. Yet while this no doubt came as a great relief to Honeyman and his family, the police revealed that the house was actually situated above a 19th-century cemetery.
The cemetery in question, Wesleyan Burial Ground, first came into use in 1840. And the people of West Hobart, Tasmania, were laid to rest there for three decades before the site was decommissioned in 1872.
Following the decommissioning of the graveyard, all the remains were supposed to be taken to nearby Cornelian Bay cemetery. However, those responsible for moving the graves in 1872 had apparently managed to miss some. Consequently, Honeyman unwittingly unearthed the bones more than a century later.
So after a great deal of research, the authorities eventually told the relieved Honeymans that their discovery wasn’t suspicious. In fact, it turned out that the family were no strangers to living atop a cemetery. Honeyman later revealed on Reddit that, by extraordinary coincidence, their previous home had also been built on a graveyard.
But what of the recent discovery? Well, the police did recruit a number of archaeologists from the local university. Moreover, the students were asked to examine the rest of the foundations of Honeyman’s house for further remains before he continued with his own excavations.
When Adam Honeyman first dug up those skull fragments, any number of different possibilities probably popped into his head, and each may well have been more gruesome than the last. Thankfully, though, the truth was far less grisly than it could have been – even if it was still pretty unsettling.