Welcome to the Richmond Cemeteries project, coordinated by Dr. Ryan K. Smith in the History Department at Virginia Commonwealth University. This project highlights central Virginia’s notable burying grounds and offers a portal for research and self-guided tours. The region’s dramatic history, from colonial settlements and slavery, to Revolution and Civil War, to postwar emancipation and industrialization, can be seen here.

Undergraduate students in several ongoing courses have contributed much of the project content, including research essays and audio podcast guides for individual graves. You may wish to listen to the latter on your smartphone while visiting the cemeteries themselves, to create your own tour. Those interested in a deeper look are encouraged to check out Death and Rebirth in a Southern City, the book that grew out of this project.

We hope these efforts help to bring the region’s complex past to life. The task is urgent, for many of the graveyards are threatened by development, vandalism, and decay.

Please note that all content on this site is copyright protected and should not be redistributed without permission. Feedback is welcome. Please direct any comments to rksmith3@vcu.edu. Or, leave a reply under a post on the News page.