This public cemetery is filled with the burial sites of prominent Savannah citizens and is famous for its haunting Southern Gothic beauty.
Bonaventure Cemetery is a fascinating cemetery just outside historic downtown Savannah. It is regarded as the inspiration for many writers, naturalists, poets and photographers throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. Take a guided tour of the oldest section of the cemetery to see the burial sites of civil war-era generals and famous Georgian citizens.
Stop at the visitor center for an annotated map of Bonaventure Cemetery. The approximately 100-acre (40-hectare) cemetery hosts the burial sites of Georgia’s first governor, Edward Telfair. Other famous plots include the renowned American writer Conrad Potter Aiken and Academy Award-winning songwriter Johnny Mercer.
John Berendt’s best-selling non-fiction novel, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, made this cemetery famous in the late 20th century. The front cover depicted a statue that was once fixed in the cemetery. Today the renowned statue is on display in the Jepson Center for the Arts in Savannah.
Wander down the tree-lined walkways to admire unique sculptures and monuments. Learn the history of this remarkable cemetery and its notable burials, such as photographer and author Jack Leigh, as you follow the annotated map. A woman named Harriet Fenwick Tattnall is believed to be the first person buried in Bonaventure Cemetery.
The Bonaventure Historical Society hosts guided walking tours on the second weekend of each month. Learn about the rich history of the land that was once a family plantation named Bonaventure, meaning “good fortune” in Italian, that dated back to the late 18th century.
Find the historic cemetery just 6 miles (10 kilometers) from the center of Savannah. Parking is available at the cemetery and taxis are available from the center of Savannah. Bonaventure Cemetery is open to the public every day of the year and visitors are encouraged to drive through the vast property.
Visit Bonaventure Cemetery to see the burial sites of many famous Georgian citizens and take in its eerie and beautiful atmosphere.