When I used to live in Ohio, I often found myself at graveyards with my dear friend Jodi Wilson. After bonding over our shared love of photography, we found we also shared a love for the peaceful-if-odd beauty that can be found at cemeteries. You might have been able to call us the Grave Hunters instead of “Ghost Hunters”.
We never actually liked to be out at night, but found during the day that amazing images of architecture and statuary could be found “amongst the dead”. Jodi always put our passion in better words than I. I do better with photos!
So it was that when I was down south this Spring, I had to visit Bonaventure Cemetery.
Bonaventure Cemetery is a roughly 160 acre plot of land, across the train tracks from historic downtown Savannah. Said to be one of the creepiest cemeteries in America, it achieved renown when the book “Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil” was written and found even more acclaim after the movie was filmed. The roots of Bonaventure Cemetery date back to around 1868 but it was actually purchased by the city of Savannah and made an official public cemetery in 1907. That is when it was officially given the name Bonaventure.
During the day, I think it’s a peaceful and beautiful place. Though even without cover of darkness, there’s a certain eerie feeling to the place that can’t be put into words. Many tourists visit for the graves of Conrad Aiken, Johnny Mercer or even Edythe Chapman. It’s open to the public, by donation from 8 am to 5 pm every day. Beware, the gates close promptly, so don’t find yourself locked in for the night by losing track of time.
Beautiful photos! I was just there last week for a funeral and I have to admit it was absolutely beautiful during the day, but something made me not want to hang around after the sun goes down….
Kirsten these pictures are beautiful. I love how you’ve captured the spanish moss and the color and tone of the cemetery. Bonaventure is one of my favorites… I’m one of those that like to visit with Conrad from time to time.
Kirsten… I love your photography. These shots are absolutely amazing!
Remarkable photos… and to be there during azalea season! I love old cemeteries and am a little obsessed with the strange things you find written on old tombstones… My recollection is there are lots of weird things written on them at Bonaventure. My father is an historian/writer/photographer and just had a book released about Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia… mention that because if if you ever find yourself there, I’d love to put you in touch w/him 🙂
i dont like cemetaries so much ( because am a coward)but i love your posts, and i can live vicariously through you