Liven things up with an interesting trip to one of these unforgettable NYC haunts.
Big and small, old and new, New York abounds with eerie, serene, and downright beautiful graveyards. Whether you’re looking to uncover some of New York’s fascinating history, or just looking for a break from the bustling city, here are six of NYC’s unmissable cemeteries:
1. Green-Wood Cemetery
From Civil War veterans to musical legends like Leonard Bernstein, some of the most fascinating characters from New York’s history are interred at Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery. Founded in 1838, Green-Wood was one of America’s first rural cemeteries, and is distinguished today as a National Historic Landmark. Whether you’re visiting one of its 560 thousand permanent residents or simply looking to take a stroll, Green-Wood boasts 478 breathtaking acres of unaltered history to meander through.
2. Revolutionary Cemetery
This often overlooked site may be the smallest cemetery in Brooklyn, but it certainly boasts its fair share of history. Founded in 1725 by Dutch immigrant William Harmans Barkaloo, this tiny graveyard is rumored to be the final resting place of several Civil War vets, alongside Barkaloo’s sons. If you’re interested, you can find this cemetery on the corner of Narrows Avenue and Mackay Place.
3. Calvary Cemetery
Boasting more than 150 years of history, the Calvary Cemetery in Queens is certainly worth a visit. While the graveyard itself is beautiful, it’s Calvary’s 1,750,000 occupants that make this graveyard such a frequently visited spot. From Ellis Island immigrants to famous politicians, Calvary is home to some of New York’s most famous Catholics. If you’re not too keen on communing with the dead, there’s still plenty for you to do in Calvary — boasting incredible views of the Manhattan skyline, Calvary is as stunningly beautiful as it is historically significant.
4. Woodlawn Cemetery
“One of New York City’s most unusual museums is not on Fifth Avenue or Madison Avenue,” according to the New York Times, “but on 400 acres of beautifully landscaped land at Webster Avenue and East 233rd Street in the Bronx.” Between its rich history and its beautiful monuments, the Woodlawn Cemetery (another National Historical Landmark) is well worth a visit. Wandering the rolling hills of Woodlawn, you’ll find everyone from famous composer Irving Berlin to seminal author Herman Melville interred in this prominent graveyard.
5. Joseph Rodman Drake Park
Named after an early American poet, this park (located in Hunt’s Point) is the site of not one but two historic graveyards. At the center of the grassy park is the most famous burial site, boasting names of prominent Bronx families (you might recognize a street name or two). The second burial ground, which has since been developed over, is the final resting place of the family’s slaves, a fact that was recently discovered by a local elementary school.
6. Trinity Cemetery and Mausoleum
Most visitors to New York are familiar with Trinity Church, a beautiful parish located in the heart of Wall Street. Fewer, however, are familiar with the Trinity Cemetery & Mausoleum located in Northern Manhattan. This stunning cemetery, located at 155th Street and Riverside Drive, is the only remaining active cemetery in Manhattan. If you’re looking to learn more about this fascinating cemetery, consider going on a self-guided walking tour, compliments of the Trinity website.