Historic Evergreen Cemetery

Since its founding in 1891 by leaders of Richmond’s African American community, Historic Evergreen Cemetery has served as a powerful monument to black achievement, community life, and family bonds.

On this page, jump to information about Evergreen Cemetery, East End Cemetery, Volunteering, and the Restoration Timeline.


Comments Open on Relocation of Remains Found Near Evergreen and East End Cemetery

Evergreen is the resting place for thousands of individuals who faced segregation, discrimination, and racial violence while contributing in important ways to the city’s—and the nation’s—vibrant social, political, intellectual, and religious life. Among those who rest here are such luminaries as Maggie L. Walker, John Mitchell, Jr., Dr. Sarah Garland Boyd Jones, and Rev. J. Andrew Bowler.

More than 10,000 lesser-known Richmond heroes are buried throughout Evergreen’s 60 acres. We invite you to make history with us by becoming involved and helping to honor those resting in this long-neglected national treasure!

Please note: East End and Evergreen Cemeteries are no longer active burial sites.
If you have questions regarding burials, please reach out to evergreen@enrichmond.org.

East End Cemetery

Enrichmond is also the owner and steward of historic East End Cemetery, located adjacent to Evergreen. Enrichmond is equally committed to preserving the significant site and working with family members, community members, and volunteers to properly restore it for the benefit of the community.

Read a brief history of the cemetery and learn about Enrichmond's role. 

The Friends of East End Cemetery created this website as a resource for information about East End Cemetery.


Sign up for our ongoing opportunties below, or you can email us to set something up!
Individuals and groups are welcome.

Remote Volunteer Opportunities are now available!

The below volunteer opportunities have been suspended due to COVID-19.

Restoration Timeline


Site restoration scheduled to begin


Evergreen & East End Volunteer Days

Please see the new COVID-19 guidelines for volunteers.

Join us most Saturdays from 9am-12pm for volunteer clean-ups at the cemeteries. Occasionally there will be free programming, workshops, and tours on those days as well!

Register to volunteer on HandsOn Greater Richmond.

August 21, 2020

Enrichmond and Virginia Outdoors Foundation Awarded Governor's Environmental Excellence Award

We are proud to announce the 2020 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award in Land Conservation-Silver was awarded to Enrichmond and Virginia Outdoors Foundation. This award recognizes our partnership in a community-based approach to preserving cultural and natural assets of one of the nations largest and most significant African-American cemeteries and sacred places- Historic Evergreen and East End Cemeteries.

Read more here!

July 2020

NAEVA Geophysics Conducts First GPR Scan Tests

Enrichmond staff contacted NAEVA Geophysics to conduct GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) scanning at East End, Evergreen, and Paupers Cemeteries. GPR is a nondestructive method of imaging the subsurface of the ground using radar pulses. Our partnership with NAEVA marks the beginning of a scientific investigation of the subsurfaces of areas in the cemeteries not previously tested or probed.

Read more here!

Mid-March 2020 - Early June 2020

Volunteer Activities Temporarily Suspended

The Enrichmond Foundation suspended all volunteers at the cemeteries due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During this time, Enrichmond staff, including the Caretaker and contracted Groundworks crews, continued their work on the ground.

Volunteer activities resumed in mid-June with new safety protocols and hosting limited numbers of volunteers at each cemetery.

March 2020

Enrichmond Contracts with Groundwork RVA to Conduct Cemetery Maintenance

In addition to the full-time Caretaker role and the weekly volunteer clean up days, Enrichmond now contracts with Groundwork RVA, a workforce development program, to conduct cemetery maintenance twice a week. 

February 29, 2020

Write the Vision; Make it Plain: Master Restoration Plan unveiled at Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site

Photo credit: Richmond Times-Dispatch

The master plan is the result of a two-year effort by Evergreen Cemetery’s Executive Planning and Review Team (ExPRT), Enrichmond, and other stakeholders. The event included remarks from members of the ExPRT team, Mayor Stoney, Enrichmond, Virginia Outdoors Foundation, and the National Park Service. The 50+ attendees were able to view and read the master plan.

The master plan is available here for download.

January 20, 2020

MLK Day draws 500 volunteers 

The Evergreen team welcomed 500 volunteers to a special clean up day in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Participating groups included Friends of East End, Tuckahoe Sports Inc, Equity Concepts, Boushall Middle School SGA, Virginia Outdoors Foundation, Virginia Union University, Southside Young Adults, Humphrey Fellowship Program, Rho Chi Phi Gamma Delta, Common Memory and University of Richmond.

October 2019

Grave recording added as a regular volunteer activity

Led by Kelly Pratt, she and volunteers from the Federal Reserve have transcribed 4,235 entries from original Evergreen ledger books into our official records database so far. Recording the thousands more buried at the cemetery requires a combination of continued transcription from the ledger books we have, as well as recording grave sites on the ground. The vision for the final result is a searchable map of the property so that families can locate their loved ones.

Sign up to volunteer with grave recording!

September 2019

East End Cemetery is added to the conservation easement

We amended the conservation easement - protecting Evergreen from development in perpetuity - to include East End Cemetery. It now receives the same protection as Evergreen.

September 2019

VA Dept. of Forestry delivers East End Cemetery Forest Management Plan

The Community Forest Management Plan gives information about the current status of the forest and ways to manage aspects of it, like invasive species.

August 2019

Evergreen Cemetery featured on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt

The segment highlights volunteer efforts, descendant involvement, and the cemetery's history.

Watch now!

July 22, 2019

Project Awarded Richmond City Council's Richmond Official Joint Recognition Award

Richmond City Council awarded the Historic Evergreen Cemetery project their Richmond Official Join Recognition Award, "in celebration of the dedicated individuals, organizations, and entities that have tirelessly worked for the protection, preservation, cleaning, and restoration of this significant and meaningful historic site.


July 2019

Evergreen Cemetery Awarded National Trust Grant

The National Trust for Historic Preservation awarded a $75,000 grant through its African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund to help launch the first phase of Evergreen Cemetery's restoration, slated to begin later this year. 

Read more!

July 2019

Second Round of Community Conversations Held to Inform Master Planning Process

Enrichmond staff and the ExPRT advisory board held a second series of Community Conversations in July to help inform the master planning process. Attendees joined us at the Richmond Main Library, Black History Museum and Cultural Center, and the Fourth Baptist Church. Thank you to all who attended and participated in these discussions!

June 3, 2019

Evergreen Cemetery Awarded UNESCO Designation

UNESCO has awarded this sacred site official designation as “a site of memory associated with the Slave Route Project”—one of the first in the world. The UNESCO designation marks the one-year anniversary of the creation of Evergreen’s restoration advisory team, a group that includes former state Secretary of Administration Viola O. Baskerville, Dr. Johnny Mickens III, great-grandson of Maggie L. Walker, and John Mitchell, great-great nephew of newspaper editor and civil rights leader John Mitchell, Jr.

Read more!

May 2019

Soil restoration and site stabilization work in full swing

As summer begins, staff and volunteers at Evergreen are ramping up efforts to keep the plant growth in check. This includes implementing the VA Dept. of Forestry’s recommendations for weed suppression through heavy mulching. The workforce development team is working hard to clear and mulch sites around the cemetery, with enough mulch available thanks to Davey Tree Company’s generous donation of wood chipping services. Evergreen now has its own tractor! The tractor will greatly enhance volunteer efforts to haul away brush.

April 2019

Enrichmond purchases East End Cemetery

We are now also the owner and steward of historic East End Cemetery, located adjacent to Evergreen. Enrichmond is equally committed to preserving the significant site and working with family members, community members, and volunteers to properly restore it for the benefit of the community.

April 2019

National Volunteer Month

We nominated three volunteers who work at Evergreen Cemetery for the Community Foundation's Power of Good celebration. 
Read more!

March 2019

Urban Horticulture Training Team begins work at Evergreen Cemetery

The team - Alvin Jones, Timothy Venable, and Rodney Allen - is part of a workforce development effort, focusing on residents of the East End. The training team helps maintain the cemetery and focuses on special projects to improve the space. In this photo, they are showing where they created a new visitor area with mulch and picnic tables.

March 2019

Soil restoration work begins with help from Davey Tree Company and the VA Department of Forestry

Based on the recommendations from the VA Dept. of Forestry's forest management plan, we began to deeply mulch certain areas of Evergreen to suppress weeds and add nutrients to the soil as the mulch breaks down over time. Thanks to the generous donation of Davey Tree Company, which chipped downed wood on the property, we have plenty of mulch to begin work.

February 23, 2019

Representatives McEachin and Adams announce the African American Burial Ground Network legislative initiative

Photo: Congressman McEachin with ExPRT member, Viola Baskerville and Enrichmond Board Vice-President, David Young

This legislation would create a voluntary national network of historic African-American burial grounds, and would provide information, technical support, and grants to aid in the research, identification, preservation, and restoration of burial sites within the network. Enrichmond is a proud endorsing organization of this legislation.
Read the official announcement.

February 2019

Existing Conditions and Community Engagement Approach report delivered

VCU's Center for Urban and Regional Analysis delivered a report that analyzes the community surrounding Evergreen, current conditions of the cemetery, and current community engagement strategies. It also presents a case study of best practices for cemetery restoration.
This document can also be found on the Evergreen Library page.

February 2019

Advisory team welcomes Pond & Co. 

At its February meeting, the ExPRT team met with Pond & Co., kicking off the master-planning process by building upon the ExPRT’s work over the past nine months, including their work in Community Conversations, as well as a range of neighborhood and association meetings.

January 2019

Project Work Plan and Forestry Plan delivered

Pond, Co. created a Project Work Planoutlining the process and timeline for the execution of a master plan. The Virginia Dept. of Forestry delivered an Evergreen Community Forest Management Plan, with its recommendations for managing the current conditions of the cemetery's forested areas.
These documents can also be found on the Evergreen Library page.

January 21, 2019

MLK Day of Celebration and Conservation

Over 300 volunteers joined in a morning of service, followed by a ceremony announcing Evergreen Cemetery's perpetual protection under a conservation easement. Virginia Outdoors Foundation and Enrichmond signed the easement following a choir performance by Virginia Union University, Libation Ceremony led by Elegba Folklore Society, and invocation by Rev. Dr. William Eric Jackson of Fourth Baptist Church.

Read more

October 2018

Community conversations held

The advisory team and Enrichmond facilitated a series of nine Community Conversations, to connect with–and learn from–as many Evergreen families and stakeholders as possible
Read more:
Community Conversation FAQs

June 2018

Advisory team forms to lead restoration effort

Evergreen Cemetery Advisory Team MeetingThe team comprises descendant family members, as well as representatives from local institutions, including the Black History Museum & Cultural Center of Virginia, Elegba Folklore Society, the African American Historical and Genealogical Society, and the Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site.
Read more


Enrichmond Foundation purchases the property and begins restoration planning and enhanced clean-up efforts

A walkway in Evergreen Cemetery in need of restoration workIn May 2017, the Enrichmond Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting grassroots efforts to preserve and create equal access to the city’s public spaces, purchased Evergreen Cemetery—committing itself to facilitate the restoration of the long-neglected sacred site.


State and nonprofit support are established for Evergreen and East End Cemeteries

The Commonwealth of Virginia commits state support to the restoration effort when the Virginia Outdoors Foundation devotes $400,000 to the permanent protection of Evergreen and East End cemeteries. VOF also helps craft legislation sponsored by Delegate Delores McQuinn that provides annual state funding for these and other historic African American cemeteries.


Renewed volunteer efforts begin clearing vegetation

Evergreen Cemetery in 1999Through the heroic efforts of several National Park Service staff, Virginia Roots, and finally Friends of Evergreen, coordinated volunteer efforts were undertaken over the past 20 years to clear large sections of Evergreen’s overgrowth.


Families navigated undergrowth to honor loved ones

Historic Maggie Walker Gravesite in Evergreen CemeteryOver the years, many families made it a priority to regularly mow and clear pathways to family gravesites.


Evergreen repeatedly sold and becomes largely overgrownEvergreen Cemetery as seen with severe overgrowth due to lack of maintenance

According to oral history, the cemetery already had fallen on hard times by the 1960s. By 1970, Evergreen’s future was uncertain. It changed hands several times, and entire sections had become overgrown.

Early 1900s

Sections, plots, and roads establishedEvergreen Cemetery historic Map as planned in the early 1900s

By the time Maggie L. Walker was buried at Evergreen in 1934, an elaborate and elegant network of paths and roadways led families and other visitors throughout the 60-acre cemetery.


Evergreen Cemetery established

Evergreen Cemetery's establishing document in 1891

Evergreen Cemetery was founded by leaders in Richmond’s African American community who lived, worked, worshipped, and raised families in this neighborhood. Unfortunately, there was no provision made for perpetual care of the cemetery and, without an endowment to help maintain the grounds, upkeep proved increasingly challenging.


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