Jerusalem's Lot (Stephen King)

Jerusalem's Lot, Maine (often shortened to 'Salem's Lot or just the Lot) is a fictional town and a part of writer Stephen King's fictional Maine topography. 'Salem's Lot has served as the setting for a number of his novels, novellas, and short stories. It first appeared in King's 1975 novel 'Salem's Lot, and has reappeared as late as his 2019 novel The Institute (see list below). The town is described as being located in Cumberland County, between (or including parts of) the towns of Falmouth, Windham, and Cumberland, near the southern part of the state about 10 miles north of Portland.[1] A map on King's official website, though, places 'Salem's Lot considerably further north, approximately in Northwest Piscataquis.[2]

Jerusalem's Lot
Stephen King location
Jerusalem's Lot sign.jpg
View of the fictional Maine town as pictured in the Castle Rock TV series
First appearance'Salem's Lot (1975)
Created byStephen King
GenreHorror fiction
In-universe information

King, a native of Durham, Maine, created a trinity of fictional Maine towns – Jerusalem's Lot, Castle Rock and Derry – as central settings in more than one work.[3][4][5]

Origin and inspirationEdit

In Danse Macabre, King's non-fiction, semi-autobiographical review of horror in all media forms, King confesses that 'Salem's Lot was largely derived from the town of Durham, Maine; specifically the area in which he resided as a youth known locally as "Methodist Corners." The Marsten House of Salem's Lot was based upon a vacant house of the same name in Methodist Corners; he and his friends had explored the real Marsten House as children.[6]

Besides the oft-used trinity of Jerusalem's Lot, Castle Rock, and Derry, King has created other fictional Maine towns, including Chamberlain in Carrie, Ludlow in Pet Sematary and The Dark Half (unrelated to the real Maine town of Ludlow), Haven in The Tommyknockers, Little Tall Island in Dolores Claiborne, Storm of the Century and "Morning Deliveries" (the last of which appeared in the book of short stories called Skeleton Crew), and Chester's Mill in Under the Dome.

Fictional history and mythEdit

The town that would become Jerusalem's Lot was founded in 1710 by a preacher named James Boon, the leader of a cult of schismatic Puritans. The cult became notorious in the region for its open embrace of witchcraft and for its amoral sexual practices, including inbreeding.[7] Jerusalem's Lot became an incorporated town in 1765, but was abandoned in 1789 after Boon and his followers mysteriously vanished. The mass disappearance occurred not long after Philip Boone, a wealthy individual and unknowing descendant of James Boon, obtained an occultic book known as De Vermis Mysteriis; Philip Boone disappeared along with the rest of the village.

When Jerusalem's Lot was incorporated in 1765, Maine was still part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The town got its name from a myth about one of the earliest residents, Charles Belknap Tanner, who raised pigs; one of these pigs was named Jerusalem. One day, Jerusalem escaped from her confines into a nearby forest, and became aggressive and wild. Tanner began warning young children who trespassed on his property to "Keep 'ee out o' Jerusalem's wood lot," lest the pig devour them. Eventually, the phrase "Jerusalem's Lot" was adopted as the town name.[8]

At an unknown date sometime after Boone and McCann's exploration, people began inhabiting the town again. The town had a representative named Elias Jointner in the House of Representatives by 1896.[8] As chronicled in the novel 'Salem's Lot, Jerusalem's Lot has been identified as a residence for great and mysterious evil, particularly vampires.

Literary works set in Jerusalem's LotEdit

Publication year Title Notes
1975 'Salem's Lot
1977 "One for the Road" A short story sequel to 'Salem's Lot published in 1977 and collected in Night Shift (1978).
1978 "Jerusalem's Lot" A short story prequel to 'Salem's Lot first published in the collection Night Shift.

Works that reference Jerusalem's LotEdit

Publication year Title Notes
1977 The Shining
1979 The Dead Zone Protagonist Johnny Smith mentions Jerusalem's Lot in relation to nearby Cumberland, Maine.
1982 The Body
1983 Pet Sematary
1992 Dolores Claiborne
2001 Dreamcatcher
2002 Lose Yourself (song) The line "I cannot grow old in Salem's lot" is a reference by rapper Eminem to the fictional town, as well as a play on words.
2003 The Dark Tower V: Wolves of the Calla
2004 The Dark Tower VI: Song of Susannah
The Dark Tower VII: The Dark Tower
2013 Doctor Sleep The antagonistic group known as the True Knot have a safe haven in Jerusalem's Lot.[9]
2014 Revival
2019 The Institute


Jerusalem's Lot appears in episode eight of the King-produced 2018 Hulu web television series Castle Rock. Henry Deaver's son Wendell takes a bus to Jerusalem's Lot after being sent away from Castle Rock by his father. A traffic sign in the episode indicated that the town was located 24 miles from Castle Rock. The town is the central setting of the second season of the series.

The 2021 Epix television series Chapelwaite, starring Adrien Brody and Emily Hampshire, is based on the short story "Jerusalem's Lot" and novel 'Salem's Lot.


  1. ^ As stated in Salem's Lot and "One for the Road"
  2. ^ Stephen King's Map of Maine
  3. ^ Wohleber, Curt (December 1995). "The Man Who Can Scare Stephen King". American Heritage. 46 (8). Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  4. ^ The Best of H. P. Lovecraft: Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre, Del Rey Books, 1982, front cover.
  5. ^ King, Stephen (February 1987). Danse Macabre. Berkley. p. 63. ISBN 978-0-425-10433-0. Archived from the original on October 4, 2013. Retrieved September 17, 2013.
  6. ^ Pg. 159
  7. ^ Stephen King, Night Shift, "Jerusalem's Lot"
  8. ^ a b Stephen King, Salem's Lot, part 1 chapter 2.
  9. ^ Duval, Nicholas (December 9, 2019). "Doctor Sleep: 10 Hidden Connections To Stephen King's Other Stories You Didn't Notice". Screen Rant. Valnet, Inc. Retrieved June 26, 2020.