Historic Markers Across Alabama

Old Rosemere Cemetery (Lee County)

Marker ID:  
Location: in the cemetery on Long St, Opelika, AL
County: Lee
Coordinates: N 32° 38.124    W 085° 23.217
  32.6354    -85.38695
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMM2AN


Old Rosemere Cemetery
Lee County

Side 1
On July 23, 1869, the City of Opelika purchased ten acres of land for a cemetery from Dr. A.B. Bennett for $100 an acre. On November 23, 1869, he accepted his choice of a lot in exchange for the debt. The earliest marked grave is dated September 25, 1854, for Nelson Clayton, the four year old son of H.D. & V.V. Clayton. This grave was moved from the Clayton plantation. 34 grave markers have death dates prior to 1869, and all of these burials were moved here. The first internment may be James DeVane who died on August 17, 1869. His burial is located just inside the gates.The Genealogical Society of East Alabama canvassed Rosemere from November 1999 to November 2002 to reestablish lost burial records. The Society gave the paper records they created to the City of Opelika. This triangular area of the cemetery is the original portion. There are 64 blocks including 9 partial blocks. A full block is 80 ft square with spaces for 128 graves. The Ladies Memorial Association tended and beautified the original cemetery. In February 1916, the City built the Cemetery House as a restroom and shelter for the Ladies. Also in 1916, the Ladies Memorial Association named this place "Rose Cemetery."

Side 2
Unknown Confederate Soldiers are honored in Block 11. In 1899, the United Daughters of the Confederacy erected marble headstones with the inscription "Unknown CSA." These markers were later replaced with the 14 stamped crosses that now stand here. Block 12 in Rosemere is called "Baby Land." Most of these babies died at birth or only lived a day or two. The city did not collect fees for burials in Block 12. Only a few of these graves were ever marked with inscribed stones. The longest epitaph is the account of a drowning of Berry Olivia Edwards in 1865. Their father, Loxia Edwards, served as Opelika's mayor. Over 200 veterans are interred in this section of Rosemere. They include veterans of the Indian, Civil, and Spanish American Wars, WWI, WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. Resting here are 97 National, State, County, and City elected officials including Congressmen, a Governor, Legislators, Judges, Sheriffs, Commissioners, a District Attorney, Mayors, Aldermen and Councilmen.

Listed in the Alabama Historic Cemetery Register, June 14, 2011

Erected by the City of Opelika, 2013

End of Old Rosemere Cemetery (Lee County)