Tuesday 10 July 2012


Trinity Church Cemetery consists of three separate burial grounds associated with Trinity Church in Manhattan, New York, USA. The first was established in the Churchyard located at 74 Trinity Place at Wall Street and Broadway. In 1842, the church, running out of space in its churchyard, established Trinity Church Cemetery and Mausoleum in Upper Manhattan between Broadway and Riverside Drive, at the Chapel of the Intercession (now The Church of the Intercession, New York), formerly the location of John James Audubon's estate. A third burial place is the Churchyard of St. Paul's Chapel.

The burial grounds have been the final resting place for many historic figures since the Churchyard cemetery opened in 1697. A non-denominational cemetery, it is listed in the United States National Register of Historic Places and is the only remaining active cemetery in Manhattan. There are two bronze plaques at the Church of the Intercession cemetery commemorating the Battle of Fort Washington, which included some of the fiercest fighting of the Revolutionary War. Trinity Church Cemetery, along with Broadway, marks the center of the Heritage Rose District of NYC.

The imposing statue of John Watts stands an impressive 9-feet and 3-inches tall, making it visible from beyond the railing in Trinity Churchyard. George E. Bissell's statue, which rests upon a 7-foot high marble pedestal, was commissioned by Major General John Watts de Peyster to decorate his ancestor's tomb.

John Watts (August 27, 1749–September 3, 1836) was a lawyer and politician from New York City. He was the last recorder of New York under the English Crown. Watts later served as a member of the New York State Assembly from 1791 to 1793, serving as speaker during these three terms. He was a member of the commission to build Newgate Prison, New York City, 1796-1799. Watts was elected to the Third United States Congress, representing New York State. He later served as a judge of Westchester County and founded and endowed the Leake and Watts Orphan House. 

This post is part of Julie's Taphophile Tragics meme.


  1. From this view, it seems that the graves are very close to the cathedral which I imagine is still operational! Interesting how there seem to be just the headstones and no grave shape! Another fascinating post!

  2. this must be a North American thing - to have no grave shape! it is what I am most used to seeing.
    1697 is quite old.

  3. Yes, I am most used to seeing a headstone and the outline of the grave itself. However, after 6 months of Taphophile Tragics, I now realise that things are done differently in North America. There, graveyards are more like fields with markers scattered around. In the above photograph, I do like the apparently wild flowers in the foreground. What is that other littler building, Nick. The cathedral is in the background, but in the middle ground - what is that? Is it a specific funerary chapel, perhaps?

  4. Interesting photo. This seemingly random (but not really) arrangement of graves is typical of an English churchyard too. Grave shapes have merged into a lawn effect which is easier to keep looking neat and tidy. It maximises use of space also.

  5. Great picture, I love the contrast of the simple stones against the ornate stone work of the catherdal.

    Herding Cats

  6. yep, thats how all the old cemeteries kind of look like around here! i like it!

  7. Love this shot! Great entry on T.T.

  8. VEry interesting post. I did not know this and I have family in NYC. Thanks for taking us on your tour.


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