Maplewood Cemetery is both the largest and most clearly designed of Marlborough's city-owned burial grounds. Since most of it was laid out in the 1860s it reflects some of the design philosophies of the times, which embraced the "rural cemetery" ideal.
All of Marlborough's present public cemeteries began as small plots of one to two acres in size. Four, the Chipman (later Rocklawn), Robin Hill, Weeks, and Maplewood Cemeteries, were started in the first half of the nineteenth centuries as private, neighborhood plots on land owned by the adjacent farmers. Although one grave here is marked 1812, Maplewood was begun somewhat later than the others, probably in the 1830's. Then, in 1855, a state law was passed prohibiting burials in private family cemeteries. In 1865 the city purchased land for both the Rocklawn and Maplewood cemeteries, both of which by then stood just at the edge of the expanded town center. The land that was purchased here, which included the old existing burial ground, was bought from farmer Abel Brigham for $1093. It was gradually expanded over the years, and soon became the burying place for most of the prominent Protestant families of the west part of town center. While Rocklawn was more convenient for residents east of the center, Maplewood also served the outlying districts of the west part of town. The latest cultural change took place here in about 1930s, when a narrow strip of land at the rear of the cemetery was opened for a group of Greek-American graves.
This cemetery sits on about 15 acres. The earliest death date is 1812 and is still in use.
The Massachusetts Historical Commission refers to this cemetery in MACRIS as MRB.801 Maplewood Cemetery.
GPS Coordinates: 42.35269, -71.56535
- Added: 1 Jan 2000
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #91214
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