San Juan Island Wash. USA Afterlife
Dining in the Afterlife
If you’re ever in Roche Harbor (on San Juan Island) in Washington USA you must stop by for a visit with the McMillin family. They are always there and at the ready to entertain any guests who come to their family table, all are welcome! You might even find there are spirits available and waiting for you when you arrive. Granted, it maybe not the spirits you typically expect to be on hand when visiting a friend but, there will be spirits.
Afterglow Vista is located north of the Roche Harbor Historic District on a beautiful site in the lush woods just past Roche Harbor Cemetery. After following a stonewall and passing through it’s gates you come upon two tiers of stairs which lead to a stately circular monument with 30 foot apricot coloured Grecian pillars supporting a circular structure adorned with Fleur-de-lis. Directly in the center is the family table crafted in limestone and surrounded by six limestone and copper chairs. Upon looking closer you notice an empty space where a seventh chair should be. Directly behind this space you also notice the seventh pillar is missing, no broken. On closer inspection you realize it was created that way, surely symbolic of something.
After locating a sign on the site most all of your questions are answered.
The sign reads:
“The structure is approached by two sets of stairs, representing the steps within the Masonic Order. The stairs on the east side of the mausoleum stand for the spiritual life of man. The winding in the path symbolizes that the future cannot be seen. The stairs were built in sets of three, five and seven. This represents the three stages of life (youth, manhood, age), the five orders of architecture (Tuscan, Doric, Iconic, Corinthian, Composite), the five senses, and the seven liberal arts and sciences (grammar, rhetoric, logic, arithmetic, geometry, music, astronomy).
The columns were created to be the same size as those in King Solomon’s temple. The broken column represents the broken column of life-that man dies before his work is completed.
The center of the mausoleum boasts the round table of limestone and concrete surrounded by six stone and concrete chairs. The chair bases are crypts for the ashes of the family, while the whole represents their reunion after death.
The construction of the mausoleum began in 1930 and was completed to its present state by the spring of 1936 at a cost of approximately $30,000. McMillin had planned to erect a bronze dome with the Maltese cross atop the edifice. He had ordered the dome, but his son, Paul, cancelled the order, as the company did not have the $20,000 it would cost.”Afterglow vista Mausoleum
John Stafford McMillin, the patriarch of the family, built Afterglow Vista as a mausoleum for himself, his wife and his family. Each chair holds the ashes of a family member and one chair, the ashes of John and his wife. The mausoleum is also the final resting place for Ada Beane who was the McMillin family’s governess for a greater part of her life.
The monument is reputedly said to be haunted. Many visitors have sensed they are not alone feeling cold spots. They have also spoke of the feeling of a presence or a spirit when they stand near the table, those who sit on the chairs report an uneasy feeling as if they have violated someone’s personal space. If they were courageous (or foolhardy) enough to actually sit on the table it’s been reported that disembodied hands pushed them off.
Late at night strange blue lights have been seen and photographed floating over the chairs. Under the full moon visitors have also reported seeing the McMillin family sitting around the table laughing and conversing. On rainy days visitors have purported that no rain touches them when they are seated on the chairs protected by the bronze dome that was intended but never installed.
The Afterglow Vista is a beautiful and quiet place where one can visit all year around to enjoy the lush solitude of the forest: but you must remember, at Afterglow Vista you are never really alone.
For more information on Afterglow Vista:
If you would like to purchase a digital download of this art go to: