Oldest Cemeteries in Massachusetts

Massachusetts has many historic cemeteries. Not surprisingly, some of the oldest cemeteries in Massachusetts happen to be located in some of the oldest towns in the state. Most of these cemeteries were established in the 17th century when the first towns were settled.

Other cemeteries on this list include historic Native-American cemeteries that were established at an unknown date as well as a few abandoned cemeteries that could not be fully identified and/or dated.

The following is a list of the oldest cemeteries in Massachusetts:

Cole’s Hill Burying Ground, Carver Street, Plymouth: 1620

King’s Chapel Burying Ground, 58 Tremont Street, Boston: 1630

Phipps Street Burying Ground, Phipps Street, Boston: 1630

Myles Standish Burial Ground, Chestnut Street, Duxbury: circa 1632

Dorchester North Burying Ground, 585 Columbia Road, Boston: 1633

Old North Burial Ground, 63 High Street, Ipswich: 1634

Old Burying Ground, Garden Street, Cambridge: circa 1636

Old North Burial Ground, 126 Norton Street, Weymouth: circa 1636

Old Burying Point Cemetery (Charter Street Cemetery), 51 Charter Street, Salem: 1637

Old Burying Point Cemetery in Salem, Mass in 1910
Old Burying Point Cemetery in Salem, Mass in 1910

The Burial Place, Village Ave, Dedham: 1638

Old Burial Hill, 50 Orne Street, Marblehead: 1638

Salisbury Colonial Burying Ground, 24 Beach Road, Salisbury: 1639

Salisbury Colonial Burial Ground, Salisbury, Mass. Photo Credit: Rebecca Brooks
Salisbury Colonial Burial Ground, Salisbury, Mass

Rowley Burial Ground, Main Street, Rowley: 1639

Hancock Cemetery, 1307-1349 Hancock St, Quincy: circa 1640

Woburn First Burial Ground, Park Street, Woburn: 1642

First Parish Burial Ground, 122R Centennial Ave, Gloucester: 1644

North Cemetery, Old Sudbury Road, Wayland: circa 1645

Cove Burying Ground, State Highway, Eastham: 1646

Howes Family Cemetery, 48 Bramble Lane, Dennis: 1650

Clark Street Cemetery, Clark Road, Lowell: circa 1650

Vine Lake Cemetery, Main Street, Medfield: 1651

Winslow Cemtery, Winslow Cemetery Road, Marshfield: circa 1651

Old Settlers Burying Ground, Main Street, Lancaster: 1653

Lothrop Hill Cemetery, Main Street, Barnstable: 1654

Golgotha Burying Ground, Main Street, Amesbury: 1654

Broad Street Cemetery, 5 Broad Street, Salem: 1655

South Cemetery, South Main Street, Sherborn: 1655

Copp’s Hill Burying Ground, Hull Street, Boston: 1659

Copp's Hill Burying Ground, Boston, Mass, circa 1904
Copp’s Hill Burying Ground, Boston, Mass, circa 1904

Granary Burying Ground, 83-115 Tremont Street, Boston: 1660

Copp’s Burial Ground, Hull Street, Boston: 1660

East Parish Burial Ground, Centre Street, Newton: 1660

Old Hadley Cemetery, Cemetery Road, Hadley: 1661

1661 Cemetery, Washington Street, Manchester: 1661

Nemasket Hill Burial Ground, Plymouth Street, Middleborough, 1662

Old Burying Ground, Academy Road, North Andover: circa 1662

Bridge Street Cemetery, 156 Bridge Street, Northampton: 1662

Bartlett Cemetery, Main Street, Amesbury: 1663

Sandwich Old Town Cemetery, 21 Grove Street, Sandwich: 1663

Indian Burying Ground, 126 Providence Road, Grafton: circa 1664

Old Burying Place, Arlington Street, Watertown: 1665

Bradford Burying Ground, 326 Salem Street, Haverhill: circa 1665

Richmond Family Cemetery, Route 44, Taunton: circa 1665

Old Burying Ground, Arlington Street, Watertown: 1665

Old South Burying Ground, Main Street, Peabody: 1666

First Burying Ground, Maple Street, Hatfield: circa 1669

Hill Cemetery, Elm Street, Hatfield: 1669

Bear Hill Cemetery, Pond Street, Hopkinton: 1670

Hingham Cemetery, 12 South Street, Hingham: 1672

Milton Cemetery, 211 Centre Street, Milton: 1672

Center Cemetery, 65 East Street, Wrentham: 1673

Spring Hill Cemetery, Marlborough: 1675

Saddle and Pillion Burial Ground: 6 Tupper Road, Sandwich: 1675

Reed Burying Ground, Great Road, Littleton: 1676

Woodcock Cemetery, North Washington Street, North Attleborough: 1676

Old Hill Burying Ground, Concord: 1677

Blake Cemetery, 1314 Somerset Ave, Taunton: 1678

Burial Hill, School Street, Plymouth: 1679

Burial Hill, Plymouth, Mass, circa 1910
Burial Hill, Plymouth, Mass, circa 1910

Wenham Cemetery, Main St, Wenham: 1681

Old Burying Ground, Main Street, Essex: 1680

Norwell Old Second Church Cemetery, 930 Main Street, Norwell: 1680

Tyng Family Cemetery, 80 Tyng Road, Tyngsborough: 1681

Burying Ground, Old Mechanic Street, Westfield: 1683

Salem Street Burying Ground, Salem Street, Medford: 1683

Hingham Center Cemetery, Hingham: 1684

Agawam Cemetery, 87 Great Neck Road, Wareham: circa 1685

Center Street Cemetery, Parker Ave, Northfield: 1686

Central Cemetery, South Main Street, Sherborn: circa 1686

Neck of Land Cemetery, Summer Street, Taunton: 1687

Eddy Burial Ground, Ledge Road, Swansea: circa 1687

High Street Cemetery, Hingham: 1688

Werden Family Cemetery, Dennis: 1688

Farm Cemetery, Farm Road, Sherborn: circa 1688

Fairfield Cemetery, William Fairfield Drive, Wenham: 1691

The Old Graveyard, South Street, West Bridgewater: 1692

Rebecca Nurse Burying Ground, Danvers: 1692

Smith Family Cemetery, Dartmouth: 1692

Rumney Marsh Burying Ground, Butler Street, Revere: 1693

Men of Kent Cemetery, Meeting House Lane, Scituate: 1693

Quaker Meetinghouse Old Burial Ground, 22 Quaker Road, Sandwich: circa 1695

South Gardner Cemetery, Old Gardners Neck Road, Swansea: circa 1696

Wadsworth Cemetery, 18 Summer Street, Danvers: 1696

Hall Family Cemetery, Corporation Road, Dennis: 1696

South Burying Ground, 8B Main Street, Concord: 1697

Church Hill Cemetery, Main Street, Framingham: 1698

Undated Native-American Burial Grounds:

Indian Burial Ground, North Main Street, Attleboro: date unknown

East Freetown Indian Burial Grounds (first burials of John Eliot’s Praying Indians), Chace Road, Freetown: date unknown

Mashpee Indian Burial Ground (Jonas), 17 Mizzenmast Road, Mashpee: date unknown, abandoned

Indian Burial Ground, Eliot Street, Natick: date unknown

Indian Burial Ground, Main Street, Stockbridge: date unknown

Indian Cemetery, 1168R Russell Mills Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

Undated Abandoned Cemeteries:

Cudworth Family Burial Ground, Prospect Street, Auburn: date unknown

Akin family Cemetery, Akin Street, Dartmouth: date unknown

Macomber, Elijah Cemetery, Fisher Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

Barker Family Cemetery, Manchester Lane, Dartmouth: date unknown

Mosher Family Cemetery, Old Faunce Corner Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

Sambo Slocum Cemetery, 171R Gaffrey Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

Vieira Farm Cemetery, Jordan Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR 850] Name unknown, Butterfly Trail, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR 855] Name unknown, 133 Horseneck Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR 860] Name unknown, 1077 Reed Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR.868] Name unknown, 1168R Russells Mills Rd, Dartmouth: date unknown

Sherman Family Cemetery, Division Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR 869] Name unknown, 441R Elm Street, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: DAR 880] Name unknown, 239 Cross Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

Anthony Snell Burial Ground, Hart Street, Dighton: date unknown

Lee Family Cemetery, Perry Street, Douglas: date unknown

Slocum, Sambo Cemetery, 171R Gaffney Rd, Dartmouth: date unknown

Quaker Burial Ground, Amherst Road, Pelham: date unknown

Vinal – Barnes Tomb, Booth Hill Road, Scituate: date unknown

Gardner – Anthony Burial Ground, Lees River Ave, Somerset: date unknown

Slade Cemetery, Brayton Street, Swansea: date unknown

Greenwood Quaker Burial Ground, Fremont Street, Taunton: date unknown

Rivers Road Cemetery, Rivers Road, Tolland: date unknown

Cummings Burial Ground, 83 Asbury Street, Topsfield: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: UXB.829] Name Unknown, 500 Chesnut Street, Uxbridge: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: UXB.828] Name unknown, 27 Gary Lane, Uxbridge: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: UXB.830], Name unknown, 195 King Street, Uxbridge: date unknown

Tucker Cemetery, 560 West Street, Uxbridge: date unknown

Christiantown Burial Ground, Christiantown Road, West Tisbury: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.876] Name unknown, 142 Briggs Road, Westport: date unknown

Macomber – White Burial Ground, 15 Cape Bial Lane, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.878] Name unknown, 14 Clyde’s Way, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.867] Name unknown, 212 Cornell Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.868] Name unknown, 1168R Russells Mills Road, Dartmouth: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.879] Name unknown, 36 Crane Street, Westport: date unknown

Rev. Perry Davis Burial Ground, Davis Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.884] Name unknown, 1165 Drift Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.883] Name unknown, 1489 Drift Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.875] Name unknown, 1612B Drift Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.885] Name unknown, 249B Fisherville Lane, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.8002] Name unknown, 27 Horseneck Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.888] Name unknown, 657 Horseneck Road, Westport: date unknown

Cornell Burial Ground, Main Road, Westport: date unknown

Howard Private Lot Burial Ground, 383 Main Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.871] Name unknown, 468 Main Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.890] Name unknown, 479 Main Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.872] Name unknown, 1219A Main Road, Westport: date unknown

Howard Burial Ground, 808 Old County Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.870] Name unknown, Old Harbor Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.892] Name unknown, 233 Old Harbor Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.8001] Name unknown, 601 Old Harbor Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.895] Name unknown, 501 Pine Hill Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.866] Name unknown, 850 Pine Hill Road, Westport: date unknown

Joshua Cemetery Petty, Sanford Road, Westport: date unknown

[MACRIS Inventory No: WSP.899] Name unknown, 592 Sodom Road, Westport: date unknown

Sources:
Massachusetts Cultural Resource Information System, mhc-macris.net/
Amesbury Reconnaissance Report, Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, May 2005, amesburyma.gov/sites/g/files/vyhlif2731/f/file/file/amesbury_landscape_inventory_2005.pdf
Salisbury Reconnaissance Report, Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, May 2005, mass.gov/doc/salisbury/download
Kelly, Joyce. “Interpretive sign installed at Watertown burial ground.” Wicked Local, 28 Jan. 2013, wickedlocal.com/article/20130128/NEWS/301289625
Cerullo, Mac. “Volunteers restore Salisbury’s oldest gravestones.” Newburyport News, 8 May. 2013, newburyportnews.com/news/local_news/volunteers-restore-salisburys-oldest-gravestones/article_3dfaaefb-2de7-5ec0-9954-4b234f19237c.html
Neal, Jeff. “Amid the Old Burying Ground.” Harvard Gazette, 28 Oct. 2015 news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2015/10/in-the-old-burying-ground/
“The Burial Ground.” The Sons and Daughters of the First Settlers of Newbury, Massachusetts, sonsanddaughtersofnewbury.org/the-burial-ground
“First Settler’s Burying Ground.” Town of Newbury, townofnewbury.org/sites/g/files/vyhlif951/f/uploads/first_settlersfinal_7.21.20.pdf
“Old Burying Ground.” NPS.gov, nps.gov/places/old-burying-ground.htm
“Coles Hill Burial Ground.” Plymouth-ma.gov, plymouth-ma.gov/cemetery-and-crematory-management/pages/coles-hill-burial-ground
Moulton, John. Tombstone Inscriptions from the Old Burying Ground, Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts, files.usgwarchives.net/ma/essex/towns/lynn/cemeteries/oldburying.txt

About Rebecca Beatrice Brooks

Rebecca Beatrice Brooks is the author and publisher of the History of Massachusetts Blog. Rebecca is a freelance journalist and history lover who got her start in journalism working for small-town newspapers in Massachusetts and New Hampshire after she graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a B.A. in journalism. Visit this site's About page to find out more about Rebecca.

2 thoughts on “Oldest Cemeteries in Massachusetts

  1. Cindy Gaylord

    I was just reading through your list of oldest cemeteries in Massachusetts. We had always believed that our Old Burying Ground in Westfield was one of the oldest cemeteries sill in its original location in Massachusetts. It was established on April 27, 1668. I believe your list has it established in 1683, which is actually the date of our oldest remaining stone, but the cemetery is older. Do you know how I could find out if the other cemeteries mentioned in your list are still in their original location? Thank you for your help!

    Reply
    1. Rebecca Beatrice Brooks Post author

      A lot of the dates for the cemeteries come from the MACRIS website, which is run by the Massachusetts Historical Commission, and they usually date the cemetery by the oldest stone, even though that’s not always accurate but it’s all they have to go on sometimes. Occasionally, if I could find some town record or historical record that dated a specific cemetery even earlier I would use that instead but that isn’t always easy to come by. So it’s totally possible that the Old Burying Ground in Westfield is actually older. I don’t know how you could find out if a cemetery is in its original location other than looking up the town history and seeing if they mention it being moved. The MACRIS website has the historical commission application for many of the sites listed so you could look up a specific cemetery and read the application. The application for the Old Burying Ground in Westfield says it was constructed in 1683 but then later on says it also dates to 1668 so it’s not really clear. I think they believe it was constructed in 1668 but the 1683 headstone is the only actual evidence they have so that’s what they go by.

      Reply

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