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Maple Hill Cemetery, Huntsville

4.7
#14 of 30 in Things to do in Huntsville
Cemetery Landmark
Maple Hill Cemetery is the oldest and largest cemetery in Huntsville, Alabama. Founded on two acres (8,000 m²) in about the year 1822, it now encompasses nearly 100 acres (400,000 m²) and contains over 80,000 burials. It was added to the Alabama Historical Commission's Historic Cemetery Register in 2008, and to the National Register of Historic Places in 2012. Its occupants include five governors of Alabama, five United States senators, and numerous other figures of local, state, and national note. It is located east of the Twickenham Historic District.HistoryThe original two acres of the cemetery were sold to the city of Huntsville on September 14, 1822 by planter LeRoy Pope. Though early burials are difficult to document, there is substantial evidence that the land had been in use as a cemetery for some time prior to its official establishment. The oldest grave with marker intact is that of Mary Frances Atwood, infant daughter of William and Martha Caroline Atwood, who died September 17, 1820. Headstones are sparse in the oldest section, many having decayed over time and been discarded, and it is likely that many unmarked graves share a similarly early date.The cemetery was expanded at some point after 1849 to include the two acres on which LeRoy Pope and his family were buried. There are some indications that this land, which had until then remained a part of the Pope estate, may already have been in use as a burial ground. Pope's son-in-law John Williams Walker had died in 1823, Pope's wife Judith in 1827, and Pope himself in 1844. It is known that the Popes maintained a private cemetery on their plantation, but it is unclear whether the Pope graves were moved to their present location following the sale of the Pope estate in 1849, or whether this property in fact contained the existing Pope cemetery. Several other monuments in this section suggest its use at least as early as 1844.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
66 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • Cemetery office was closed the day we visited and we were disappointed to find that there was no way to get a map with historically significant markers. We searched the web and turned up empty too. We...  more »
  • This place has many historical people buried here. Tallulah Bankhead is one of many that are portrayed in the flesh during the cemetery stroll. This place has been around since the founding of Huntsvi...  more »
  • This cemetery goes back several centuries. The headstones are beautiful and historical. Have taken several classes there and done tracings from the headstones.  more »
Google
  • Nice place to go for a stroll. It's quiet and serene. Can't beat free admission.
  • Filled with historical markers. Done of the most gorgeous diverse stones, monuments ever
  • I've experienced annual field trips to this Cemetery for the past 4 years. This is one of my favorites.
  • This place is dead.....in a really good way.
  • Most beautiful and historical cemetery in the area.

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Where to stay in Huntsville

A few independently owned bed and breakfasts and hotels can be found in the town's historical districts, but most rooms are in large, modern, chain hotels that offer both standard and extended-stay rooms. These chain hotels often have rooms for walk-in guests. The bed and breakfasts in the city center require advance reservations.
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