Elmwood Cemetery

501 Elmwood Ave., Columbia, South Carolina


Photo taken by Michael Miller in August 2014



Street View 


Elmwood Cemetery is a 168.46-acre cemetery in Columbia established in 1854. Elmwood Cemetery is a good representation of the principles of the aesthetic traditions of both the rural and lawn-park cemetery movements in its plan, landscaping and gravemarkers. Gravemarkers are varied, including flush stones, tablets, headstones, mausoleums, ledgers, and obelisks. The “old cemetery” or southern section of Elmwood Cemetery is an example of a “rural cemetery.” The intent was to create a picturesque landscape. Elmwood soon became the fashionable place for Columbians to be buried. By 1921 the cemetery had become overgrown, and seemed out of step with current burial customs. The trustees of Elmwood Cemetery recommended the opening of a “new cemetery” or “lawn-park cemetery” section. The old section is visually distinct from the newer northern section. The former is more heavily wooded and with larger gravemarkers. It also includes an area devoted to Confederate dead, taking on the appearance of a military cemetery. Elmwood Cemetery is a designed landscape. Cultural features include a drive, fencing, buildings, a rostrum, a wrought iron archway, and markers. Listed in the National Register September 6, 1996. - SCDAH

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on September 6, 1996
Reference number
Area of significance
Landscape Architecture
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction
Property type
Historic function
Current function
Periods of significance
1850-1874; 1875-1899; 1900-1924; 1925-1949
Significant years
1854; 1921

Update Log 

  • October 9, 2014: Updated by Michael Miller: Added "Description" & "Street View"
  • August 11, 2014: New photos from Michael Miller