Elmwood Funeral Home & Cremation Service | Elmwood Cemetery

501 Elmwood Ave, Columbia, SC 29201 | 803-252-2133 | MAP


History of Elmwood Cemetery

Founded in 1845, Elmwood Cemetery has been the Columbia, South Carolina, metropolitan area’s most prestigious cemetery for more than 175 years. Rich in heritage and unique in atmosphere, it projects the life and times of the capital city. Many species of towering hardwoods and wildlife, winding roads, grand old family-owned mausoleums and the Midlands’ most unusual variety of monuments set our environment apart from any other.

The Southern Division of Elmwood is an example of the “rural cemetery” style. At one time, rural cemeteries were large to provide a sense of isolation and retreat from an increasingly urban world. These cemeteries were ornamental, both in landscape and their art, as the intent was to create a picturesque landscape. The main feature of the rural cemetery was the family plot. Families were encouraged to buy large plots and erect impressive monuments with the family name. Many of these early family plots can be seen today. The cemetery planned and provided for the landscape background, with winding carriage drives and thickly planted trees. Individual owners developed the final landscape, both with monuments and the landscaping of their individual plots. Possessing a fashionable cemetery designed on the rural cemetery plan became a symbol of a “successful, prosperous city.”

The history of Columbia and the Midlands can be seen as you stroll through the cemetery. You can still see the winding drives and the large trees throughout the park, as well as the many family plots with their ornate markers. The names of many of Columbia’s earliest and most prestigious families adorn the monuments, and the epitaphs themselves are a page out of history.

Columbia’s families continue to select historic Elmwood Cemetery as their final resting place with 30 acres of cemetery property still available. Elmwood Cemetery is Columbia’s full-service, perpetual care cemetery. Options include gardens with upright headstones, flush bronze markers and above-ground mausoleum crypts.

Today, we are proud to be a member of the Dignity Memorial® network of funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers. Dignity Memorial providers offer exclusive benefits, including National Transferability of Prearranged Services, the Bereavement Travel Program, the 24-Hour Compassion Helpline® and access to an acclaimed grief management library. As North America’s largest provider of funeral, cremation and cemetery services, the Dignity Memorial brand is your assurance of quality, value, caring service and exceptional customer satisfaction.

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