Walt's Look Around: Greenwood Cemetery - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Walt's Look Around: Greenwood Cemetery

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Greenwood Cemetery was one of the very first things created in the new town of Jackson. The State Legislature passed an act establishing it in 1823. It has grown from its original six acres to 22 acres today. And a pretty good cross section of Jackson is buried here. It was never segregated. If you died in Jackson, you got buried here.

"There were no sections for any groups. We didn't have Catholics and Protestants. We didn't blacks and whites. Everybody just got buried," said Cecile Wardlaw.

Cecile Wardlaw there is with the Greenwood Cemetery Association, which is the volunteer group which pretty much looks after the cemetery. Cecile points out some of the notable facts about Greenwood Cemetery. 

"Well we have seven governors. We have Confederate Generals. We have a confederate section and we did survey that and there is some evidence of mass graves in that area," said Wardlaw. "When you walk around, you see the names of people that things in Jackson are named for. And I just saw Mr. Fondren's name over there. So it's streets and schools and just familiar names in Jackson are buried here." 

The antique roses are a relatively new addition. Although you see such roses in cemeteries all over the south. These roses are a thoughtful gift of garden guru Felder Rushing.

 "He went to the antique rose emporium in Texas and instead of getting a fee he came back with a truck and trailer load of roses and he did that two or three years and the master gardeners helped him plant them," said Wardlaw.  

Cemeteries have always been for the living. The dead buried here couldn't care less how decorated a place it is. And Greenwood Cemetery has come back alive, as it were, over the past few years. 

"It's downtown Jackson's largest green space. And we want everybody to think of it as a beautiful park," said Wardlaw. 

And with lots of people working downtown taking lunchtime walks there, and people living downtown also utilizing it, it is one of downtown's most popular areas. 

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