Explore Elmwood Cemetery

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Introduction to Elmwood Cemetery

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

Elmwood Cemetery
824 South Dudley St.
Memphis, TN 38104
901-774-3212
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Opened in 1852, Elmwood is Memphis' oldest active cemetery. The present-day Elmwood occupies 80 acres in inner-city Memphis.

A wide assortment of people call Elmwood "home", including generals, politicians, Confederate soldiers, victims of the yellow fever epidemics of 1800s, outlaws, and everyday folks. Some of these people have massive monuments in their honor, some rest beneath dilapidated tombstones that are sinking into the ground.

Without a doubt, Elmwood is one of the most fascinating places to visit in Memphis. With its breathtaking statuary and rich history, it is not to be missed. Enjoy this photographic preview of the beauty you'll find at Elmwood.

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Home Sweet Home

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

Some of Elmwood's residents were so prominent in life, that they were issued addresses in death, as you can see from this photo. 

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Gone and Perhaps Forgotten

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

There is no way to tell how long this plot's occupant has been buried here, but it's safe to say that it has been quite a while. Many of the cemetery's engravings have faded away.

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A Room with No View

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

Elmwood is full of mausoleums. In the photo you can see two of them, one of which is built into the grassy hill.

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Church Family Mausoleum

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

This mausoleum is where Robert Church and his family are entombed. Church founded the Solvent Savings Bank and Trust Company and was reported to be the South's first African-American millionaire.

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In the Round

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

Beyond the tombstones at the forefront of this photo, a Memphis couple is buried beneath the circular structure. In 2002, grounds of Elmwood Cemetery were entered on the National Register of Historic Places. 

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Grave of Boss Crump

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

This obelisk monument was erected above the grave of E.H. Crump, former mayor and political boss of Memphis. 

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A Little Spooky

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

This quartet of graves is located in the shade of a magnificent magnolia tree that makes the scene a little eerie. More than 75,000 people have been laid to rest in Elmwood through the years. 

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A Watchful Eye

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

This angel is keeping watch over the grave next to which she is situated. This style of monument reflects the Victorian style, which presented a romanticized view of death and often used symbols like angels and flowers. 

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A Beautiful Place to Visit

Photo by Teresa R. Simpson

This view of Elmwood represents only a small portion of the cemetery but should give you an idea of its vast beauty and hopefully, inspire you to make a visit.

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Elmwood Visiting Info and Tours

Monument at Elmwood Cemetery in Memphis
Holly Whitfield

One Saturday a month, Elmwood Cemetery offers a docent-led tour walking through the cemetery. The tours are open to the public and cost $15 per person. Register online ahead of time and plan to be at the cemetery's Cottage at 10:30 a.m. for an hour and a half tour.

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