Connecticut Cemetery Tours
Connecticut Cemeteries, Graveyards and Burial Grounds
I used to think cemeteries were creepy and sad. But after taking a cemetery tour in Norwichtown, Connecticut, I find them fascinating. They are a great look back to the past and a great way to capture history.
There are cemeteries that offer self guided tours. Some cemeteries have special walking tours scheduled for the Halloween season and some have tours all year round. Some are memorials to something truly tragic or special and not to be forgotten.
Year round cemetery tours self guided and guided:
Norwichtown Connecticut Cemetery - A Very Peaceful, Off the Road, Pocket Hole of a CemeteryClick thumbnail to view full-size
Norwichtown Burial Ground
This is the first cemetery I ever toured. Once inside it is so peaceful. It is off the road and nestled in a residential neighborhood, behind and in between houses build around it.
There are two entrances, both a little difficult to find: one on E.Town Street, and the other on Cemetery Road. Cemetery Road is a small dead end street that is found at the intersection of Town Street (Route 32) and Elm Avenue. It runs alongside some small shops and looks quite a bit like a driveway.
You may download a copy of a walking guide which highlights the most interesting features of the cemetery.
The Crypt, Center Church, New Haven - A Most Unique Burial Ground in the Basement of the Church
Center Church, The Crypt was organized in 1639. The basement of the church holds graves from 1687 - 1812. They include: President Rutherford B. Hayes' family and Benedict Arnold's first wife.
Open for tours.
Grove Street Cemetery, New Haven - Egyptian Revival Entry Gateway
The Grove Street Cemetery opened in 1797 after a severe yellow fever epidemic. Added burial space was needed.
The Department of the Interior added the Grove Street Cemetery to the National Register of Historic Places, in 1997. In 2000, the Department declared the cemetery a National Historic Landmark
Regular free guided tours from May to September --every Saturday at 11:00 a.m. and the first and third Sunday at 11:00.
Among the people interred here are: Eli Whitney, inventor; Noah Webster, lexicographer; Josiah Willard Gibbs, Jr., scientist; Lyman Beecher, abolitionist and prohibitionist; O.C. Marsh, paleontologist; Lars Onsager, Nobel Prize winner; Charles Goodyear, inventor of vulcanized rubber, and Glenn Miller, orchestra leader.
Mountain Grove Cemetery -Year Round Tours - Bridgeport, Connecticut
Mountain Grove Cemetery is a not operated for profit and was established in 1849.
Both P.T. Barnum (circus founder) and his main attraction Tom Thumb (Tom Stratton) are buried here.
Click on link for brochure to use for self guided tour.
Grove Street Cemetery, Putnam, Connecticut
Tucked away in the the Northeast hills of Connecticut, known as the "Quiet Corners" is the Grove Street Cemetery. Here this giant ball on top of a grave has worked it's way loose and has rotated. Spooky!!!!!
This short video is worth watching. What do you think is making the ball move on top of this grave?
An Anonymous Reader Commented on the Ball at Grove Street Cemetery
"I can tell you this much, that ball gives me the "heebie-jeebies".
Imagine creeping through the side gate of a locked cemetery, at night. What an adventure that would be. I think I could, but I'd certainly not do it alone. The Crypt and the Grove Street sound like fascinating tours. My first two stops would be the tombstones of Eli Whitney and Glenn Miller."
Ye Antientist Burial Ground - Hempstead & Granite Streets, New London
The cemetery dates back to 1652,when the first person was buried here. There are some very unusual and interesting grave markers here. For a close up look at some of the interesting head stones check out the photos at the Southern Connecticut Paranormal Society's blogspot
More Year Round Guided or Self Guided Tours
- Hartford’s Ancient Burying Ground | 60 Gold Street Hartford, CT 06103
Free guided tours on weekdays throughout the summer. Used for burials from 1640's to the early 1800's.
Links to Seasonal Connecticut Cemetery Tours
- A Haunting At Mill Hill
October 18, 19, 25 and 26.Purchase tickets online. A Haunting at Mill Hill! As the sun sets, the spirits come out to play… Take a lantern lit tour through the historic Mill Hill graveyard Hear stories of murder, death, and destruction!
- Washington Green Cemetery Tour - October 27, 2019
Groups of visitors will meet at the Museum and be led by Tour Guides dressed in vintage attire along a path of 1,000 luminaries through the Cemetery Tickets handed out on a first come first serve basis, starting at 6:15pm
- Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation Tours and Events October 26, 2018
Hallowed History Lantern Tour - October 25, 2019 Character actors will tell spooky tales. See Description. Reservations needed. Admission fee.
List of October Hikes and Tours for Walktober 2019 - Sponsored by the Last Green Valley
Check the Walktober pdf for exact time and information about more hikes and tours of cemeteries.
There are October hikes in cemeteries in Willimatic/Windham, Lebanon, Eastford, Franklin and Yantic.
The easiest way to find them is to open the brochure. Then hit CNTL F. This will open up a search window. Type in "cemetery" (without the quotes). Then keep hitting the down arrow to get to the next appearance of the word "cemetery". You might want to also do a search on "ghost" and "haunted" for other spooky activities.
Your Opinion of Cemetery Tours
I have taken a walking tour of some of the older burial grounds and find them fascinating. The inscriptions on the headstones are quite provocative and telling -- some are even humorous.
Some speak of the disease to which the person succombed. Some of the family graves show adults surround by smaller graves of their children who never made it to adult hood or who died at birth. A very sad reflection of life in the past.
© 2012 Ellen Gregory