Description of Historic Place
Chebogue Cemetery is the oldest cemetery in the Municipality of the District of Yarmouth and has been in continuous use since it was established around 1766. It is located on Town Point Road in the rural community of Rockville, about eight kilometres southeast of the town of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Municipal heritage designation applies to the land, markers and chapel.
Chebogue Cemetery is valued as the oldest cemetery in the Municipality of the District of Yarmouth; for its historical ties with the general Yarmouth area; for its continued use as a cemetery to the present day; and for its monuments and landscape features.
Chebogue Cemetery was established as a non-denominational burying ground around 1766, when the first Chebogue Meeting House was erected on or near this site. It is situated on First Division Lot number 10, which was set off as a Government reserve, in the Yarmouth Township grants in April, 1767. Rev. Jonathan Scott, the pastor at the Chebogue meeting house, petitioned the government in 1780 and was granted the entire lot, part of which, the area around the meeting house, he deeded to the residents of Chebogue the following year for a burying ground. It is known that there were burials here at least eight years prior to Rev. Scott’s grant of the lot, as records have been kept of all burials since the oldest one recorded, that of Eleanor Perry who died on November 20, 1772. Two of Yarmouth Township’s first English settlers, Ebenezer Ellis and Moses Perry, husband of Eleanor, are buried here, as well as Lucy Scott, wife of Jonathan, and many others of the earliest settlers of Yarmouth Township. This cemetery has been expanded from its original size several times and has also been in continuous active use throughout its history.
Chebogue Cemetery is situated on a promontory of land known as Town Point, which overlooks the Chebogue River. It is mostly on level ground, but is gradually sloped towards the river on the north and east sides, has well defined, grass covered avenues throughout and is bounded along the road by a stone wall with wrought iron gates at the two entry points. One memorial marker, the Webster monument, known as “the Marble Lady”, is widely known and is visited by hundreds of people every year. There are several other unusual monuments in this cemetery, including the Hogg family grave marker, which is made of cast white bronze, and an unusually large monument for a Mr. Prentice, who did not live in Nova Scotia but had visited the cemetery and thought it so beautiful that he arranged to be buried here. There is also a small concrete block chapel with brick trim near the centre of the cemetery, which was built around 1949 and is sometimes used for funeral services.
Source: Registered Heritage Property files located at the Heritage Office, 400 Main Street, Yarmouth, NS, B5A 1G2
The character-defining elements of the Chebogue Cemetery include:
- location in rural community of Rockville;
- level and sloped areas;
- grass covered avenues and plots;
- proximity to Chebogue River;
- old and new monuments;
- several unique markers;
- mature trees;
- set off from road by a stone wall with two wrought iron gates at entry points;
- small chapel of concrete block construction in centre of cemetery;
- continuously used for over two hundred years;
- continuously maintained landscaping.