Laurel Grove Cemetery has two parts, North and South, since I can’t confirm which section I visited because I missed the historical marker, I will just share the pictures and my observations. Some of the pictures that I shared on Instagram, a generous viewer corrected my mistake and stated that these pictures are in fact from Laurel Grove North. Due to COVID, the welcome center was closed and I was unable to get all of the details that I add to my travel notebook so I was confused as to which section I visited because as you will see in the pictures, the sign does not specify.
This location had me completely Unnerved, I didn’t take as many pictures, I spent most of the time in awe of the neglected structures across the cemetery. Here are a few tips that I hope will help you navigate with a bit more ease, because I found the location very overwhelming. I guess I have been spoiled and all of the cemeteries I have visited had some form of ordered structure and I was able to learn something about the people who were buried in those locations. I felt a bit lost and out of sorts here, and I was very confused and saddened by the graves in need of repair.
1. Upon entrance, you will see a map with plot numbers, not names, these numbers are the locations of grave sites. If you have a family member or ancestors here, I am not sure how you would find them if you did not have the plot number, there are hundreds and many are scattered with no information, or the information is worn. The city website provides additional maps but they weren’t much help either . You can search by name and date on the grave, I tried that for several and nothing was a match.
2. The wooden signs indicate some of the larger, notable graves, look at the date of birth and death, I found the short life spans most interesting.
3. How did the families afford funeral or burial costs, especially those with large above ground graves and obelisk? I did see many doctors as well as veterans, I’m wondering if they were from other states and if any were free people of color.
4. Notice how many of the women are named Eliza, why? Was this a popular name for the time, did it have special significance?
5. The only historic marker I found was for the Sailors Burial Ground, why?
6. The grounds were well maintained, grass was cut, landscaping done, but the disrepair of the plots I don’t understand. I took a minute and checked the website and upkeep is the responsibility of the family, but what happens if the family is no longer alive or living in Savannah? What if they have no idea that they have ancestors resting in this location?
7. Riding a bike is a great idea, the roads are small and full of rocks in some sections.
8. Another spot for great photography, the shade and shadows make beautiful shots that give you a haunted vibe.
9. I would love to go back and take a walking tour, this isn’t a historic cemetery for no reason, would love to learn a bit of history on the lives resting.
10. Be very careful in the sections that have large amounts of disrepair, you don’t want to further damage any of the unmarked or heavily worn graves.
Again sadly due to covid the office was closed and in my opinion this is a spot where curiosity requires assistance. Yes you can get some of the history on the website, but I would have loved to chat with a guide. Hope you found the tips helpful, and the pictures interesting.
“I’m still a brown girl, traveling the world, trying to make something beautiful, covid has me on pause but I’m exactly where I need to be at this moment”.
Follow my daily travels and tips on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at Unnerved Traveler. Much Love