Sacramento Historic City Cemetery
Sacramento Historic City Cemetery
Sacramento City Cemetery in 1866
|Location||1000 Broadway, Sacramento, California|
|Architectural style||Victorian Garden style|
|NRHP Reference #||14000889 |
|Added to NRHP||5 November 2014|
|Designated CHISL||5 May 1957|
The Sacramento Historic City Cemetery (or Old City Cemetery), located at 1000 Broadway, at 10th Street, is the oldest existing cemetery in Sacramento, California. The cemetery is located at the highest point in Sacramento. It was designed to resemble a Victorian garden and sections that are not located in level areas are surrounded by brick or concrete retaining walls to create level terraces. The cemetery grounds are noted for their roses which are said to be among the finest in California.
The cemetery was established in 1849 when Sacramento founder John Augustus Sutter, Jr. donated 10 acres (4.0 ha) to the city for this purpose. The grounds were landscaped in the Victorian Garden style popular at the time. In 1850, 600 victims of the Cholera epidemic that swept the city were buried in mass graves in City Cemetery. The remainder of the 800 to 1000 victims claimed by the epidemic were buried in the nearby New Helvetia Cemetery, also in mass graves. Because the New Helvetia Cemetery was prone to flooding, these graves were later transferred to City Cemetery. In 1852, a monument was erected to those who died. Howerer the exact location of either burial plot is not known.
In 1856, the city engaged a cemetery superintendent and began to plan the grounds. In 1857, the gatehouse and bell tower were constructed. These were demolished in 1949 during the widening of Broadway.
Several fraternal groups purchased sections for their members including the Masons (1859), Odd Fellows (1861) and the Sacramento Pioneers Association (1862). The city set aside a section for volunteer firemen in 1858 and members of the Grand Army of the Republic in 1878.
It was declared a State Historic Landmark on May 5, 1957 by the State Historical Landmarks Commission.
The City of Sacramento owns the cemetery, which today encompasses 44 acres (18 ha). In 1986, a group of residents were concerned by the lack of maintenance and ongoing vandalism and formed the Old City Cemetery Committee. In 1987, the committee became part of the Sacramento County Historical Society and in 2003, it became an independent organization dedicated to the preservation of the historic site.
These are some of the notable people interred in the cemetery:
- Hardin Bigelow – first directly-elected Mayor of Sacramento
- Marion Biggs – United States Representative from California
- John Bigler – third Governor of California and Minister to Chile
- Newton Booth – United States Senator & Eleventh Governor of California
- John Chilton Burch – United States Representative from California
- Amos P. Catlin – California State Legislator that wrote and carried the bill to make Sacramento the permanent capital of California
- Thomas Jefferson Clunie – United States Representative from California
- George B. Cosby – Confederate State Army Brigader General
- Aimée Crocker – heiress daughter of Edwin B. Crocker
- Edwin B. Crocker – California Supreme Court Justice and founder of the Crocker Art Museum
- Jerome C. Davis - Pioneer rancher/farmer and namesake of Davis, California and UC Davis, which were built on his former land
- Charles Duncombe – California State Assemblymember in Sacramento County and one of the first doctors in Sacramento
- James L. English – Mayor of Sacramento and State Treasurer of California
- Newton T. Gould – Civil War soldier and Medal of Honor recipient
- Frederick Winslow Hatch – served as Chaplain of the United States Senate
- Mark Hopkins, Jr. – one of the Big Four & a founder of the Central Pacific Railroad
- William Irwin – thirteenth Governor of California
- Elisabeth Philippine Zimmermann- Survivor of the Donner Party and wife of Lewis Keseberg, its most infamous survivor. He died in 1895, but his grave site is unknown. The Kesebergs lost two children, Lewis Jr. and Ada at Donner Lake, but went on to have nine more.
- Grove L. Johnson – United States Representative from California and father of United States Senator & Governor of California Hiram Johnson
- Hugh C. Murray – California Supreme Court Justice
- Henry L. Nichols – Mayor of Sacramento and Secretary of State of California
- Levi Rackliffe – State Treasurer of California
- Benjamin B. Redding – Mayor of Sacramento, California State Assemblymember, Secretary of State of California and the namesake for the city of Redding, California
- Lebbeus Simkins – Civil War sailor and Medal of Honor recipient
- Royal T. Sprague – California State Senator and California Supreme Court Justice
- John Augustus Sutter, Jr. – founder and planner of the City of Sacramento, U.S. Consul in Acapulco, Mexico and son of John Augustus Sutter, Sr.
- Jabez Turner – Mayor of Sacramento
- A. A. H. Tuttle – California State Assemblymember, Secretary of State of California and the namesake of Tuttletown, California
- Edwin G. Waite – California State Assemblymember and Secretary of State of California
- Albert Maver Winn – first City Council of Sacramento and chosen as President (ex officio Mayor), California State Adjutant General and founder of the Native Sons of the Golden West
- Gen. George Wright – General in the Union Army of the American Civil War
- Lt. Thomas F. Wright – son of Gen. George Wright, was killed while fighting in the Modoc War
- William S. Hamilton – son of American founding father Alexander Hamilton. He died in Sacramento, most likely of cholera, in October 1850. 
- "National Register of Historic Places Listings for 11/03/14 through 11/07/14". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 14 November 2014. Retrieved 4 December 2014.
- "California Office of Historic Preservation - Sacramento County". California State Parks. 2014. Retrieved 4 December 2014.
- "Old City Cemetery Committee, Inc., Sacramento, California". Old City Cemetery Committee, Inc. 2005. Retrieved March 17, 2011.
- Royston, Hanamoto, Alley & Abey, Landscape Architects and Planners (December 11, 2007). "Sacramento Historic Cemetery Master Plan" (PDF). Old City Cemetery, Inc. Retrieved December 5, 2014.
- Sutter, John A., Jr. & Ottley, Allan R. (Ed.). Statement: Regarding Early California Experiences. Sacramento Book Collectors Club. 1943.
- "City Cemetery History". Old City Cemetery Committee, Inc. 2005. Retrieved January 19, 2011.
- Self Guided Tour (PDF). Historic City Cemetery, Inc. January 2006. Retrieved January 29, 2011.
- "Sacramento Historic City Cemetery Burial Index" (PDF). Old City Cemetery Committee. 2005. Retrieved April 6, 2011.
- "Burch, John Chilton". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved May 5, 2011.
- "Archives Photo Gallery". Old City Cemetery Committee, Inc. 2005. Retrieved September 6, 2011.
- "Clunie, Thomas Jefferson". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved May 5, 2011.
- Garner, Kati (November 14, 2011). "Courageous Veterans of Old City Cemetery". Sacramento Press. Sacramento, California. Archived from the original on September 20, 2012.
- "California Governor William Irwin". National Governors Association. 2004. Retrieved March 16, 2011.
- "Some heroes of Sacramento cemetery tour wore petticoats". The Sacramento Bee. July 3, 2011. Retrieved July 5, 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sacramento Historic City Cemetery.|
- Old City Cemetery Committee, Inc. – non-profit committee that oversees the cemetery
- Cemetery Rose – group that manages and preserves the Historic Rose Garden in the cemetery
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: City Cemetery
- Sacramento City Cemetery at Find a Grave