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The Old Cemetery

Main Street, Wolfville, Nouvelle-Écosse, B4P, Canada

Reconnu formellement en: 1987/01/19

North-west view including part of rubble wall, Old Cemetery, Wolfville, NS, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
North-west View
South-east view including some of the oldest headstones, the Old Cemetery, Wolfville, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
South-east View
Main entrance and rubble wall, Old Cemetery, Wolfville, 2005. 

; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
View of Main Entrance

Autre nom(s)


Liens et documents

Date(s) de construction

1763/01/01 à 1763/12/31

Inscrit au répertoire canadien: 2006/01/11

Énoncé d'importance

Description du lieu patrimonial

The Old Cemetery is located on Main Street, Wolfville, NS, on the north side of the busy intersection of Main Street and Highland Avenue, just beyond the commercial centre of town. A random-rubble stone wall encloses the entire front side of the cemetery and includes a large wrought iron gate at its entrance. The cemetery grounds, which include some of the oldest trees in Wolfville, consist of several grass-covered interment areas, and separate family burial plots enclosed with stone pillars and iron links. The cemetery’s large grounds and mature trees provide a quiet oasis on one of Wolfville’s busiest streets. The land, grave stones, wall and fence are included in the municipal designation.

Valeur patrimoniale

The Old Cemetery is valued for its spiritual and cultural significance to the town of Wolfville, with its carved tombstones providing additional historic and artistic value. In essence, the cemetery serves as a record of the lives of the diverse townspeople who have lived in Wolfville since the town was founded. The gravestones signify an enduring association with the past by displaying the epitaphs, symbols, and carvings that chart over two centuries of spiritual life in the community.

The earliest cemetery in Wolfville and the only burial ground available to citizens until 1818, the Old Cemetery interred people from all denominations. The earliest tombstone dates to 1774, and among the people interred in the cemetery are: Nathan DeWolf (1729-89), the founder of Wolfville; Peter Bishop (1736-1825), the first minister of the Wolfville Baptist Church; Professor Isaac Chipman, the builder of Acadia University; and Rev. Edmund Albern Crawley (1799-1888), the founder-in-chief of Acadia University, one of its first two professors, and the designer of the first college building.

The cemetery is also valued for the primitive folk art designs found on many gravestones, some of which showcase the work of the Horton Carver (fl. 1783-1793), who is said to have been Scottish stone carver James Hay. Many of his sandstone grave markers are unique to the Horton-Wolfville area.

Sources: Town of Wolfville Heritage Property Program files, the Old Cemetery file.

Éléments caractéristiques

Character-defining elements of the Old Cemetery include:

- random-rubble stone wall with a wrought iron gate entrance;
- mature trees that separate the cemetery from the street and nearby intersection;
- original and historic grave stones and monuments, with their surviving inscriptions;
- grass-covered interment areas, and separate family burial plots enclosed with stone pillars and iron links.




Autorité de reconnaissance

Administrations locales (N.-É.)

Loi habilitante

Heritage Property Act

Type de reconnaissance

Bien inscrit au répertoire municipal

Date de reconnaissance


Données sur l'histoire

Date(s) importantes


Thème - catégorie et type

Établir une vie sociale et communautaire
Les institutions religieuses
Exprimer la vie intellectuelle et culturelle
La philosophie et la spiritualité

Catégorie de fonction / Type de fonction


Religion, rituel et funéraille
Site funéraire, cimetière ou enclos


Architecte / Concepteur




Informations supplémentaires

Emplacement de la documentation

Inventory Site Form found at Planning and Development Services, Town of Wolfville, 200 Dykeland Street, Wolfville, NS B4P 1A2

Réfère à une collection

Identificateur féd./prov./terr.




Inscriptions associées



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