I've always been fascinated by cemeteries. My guess is because so much history exists amongst the tombstones. I am especially intrigued by the little rural graveyards across South Dakota, Minnesota, & Iowa.

South Dakota became a state in 1889, but there were many burial grounds that existed in the across the plains long before that. I got to thinking about where are some of the first established cemeteries in the midwest and throughout the United States.

According to Readers Digest the oldest established cemetery in South Dakota is Mount Moriah Cemetery in Deadwood. I've toured Mount Moriah which is the final resting place of Wild Bill Hickok and rumored girlfriend Calamity Jane. You'll also find Seth Bullock and Sol Star buried there. Before Seth Bullock became the first sheriff of Deadwood he opened a hardware store with Sol Star to provide tools for the arriving gold miners.

You can find Minnesota's oldest established cemetery in St. Paul. Oakland Cemetery was established in 1853. At the time a standard plot sold for $3.15.

Iowa's oldest cemetery in Dubuque is the states oldest and dates back to the 1830s. Nebraska lists Prospect Hill Cemetery, established 1858 as it's oldest. Readers Digest has a full list of Every States Oldest Cemetery.


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