“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Macon in Bibb County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)

Rose Hill Cemetery

"Recollection in a bouquet of yesterday"

Rose Hill Cemetery Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brandon D Cross, October 7, 2016
1. Rose Hill Cemetery Marker
Inscription.  Rose Hill Cemetery opened in May of 1840, twenty one years before the first casualties of the Civil War. Seven Macon soldiers were killed in the battle at Pensacola, Fl., in the first year of the war 1861. Four were brought to Macon and buried in the first row of what is known as 'Soldiers' Square' in Rose Hill. A thousand people attended the funerals. One witness wrote, “The funeral wagon was decorated with flowers, they being white mostly, and loops of crape, and that drawn by six horses with a small Confederate flag attached to their head, each man, according to military law, after being shrouded was wrapped in a flag. I never witnessed such a scene.”

Macon became a center for Confederate hospitals during the war, eventually becoming second only to Richmond, Va. in numbers of wounded. In April 1866, the Macon Ladies Memorial Association organized the reinternment of hundreds of soldiers who were buried near Macon’s hospitals into Rose Hill and the Old City Cemetery on Seventh Street. On Thursday, April 26, 1866, the graves were decorated with flowers, and a memorial service was observed. Confederate memorial Day continues
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to be observed annually at 'Soldiers' Square' in Rose Hill.

Many Macon officers killed in battles across the South were brought home and buried in Rose Hill. Unfortunately, most of Middle Georgia’s hundreds of enlisted soldiers who died during the war were buried in unmarked graves upon battlefields and near hospitals and northern prisoner of war camps.

Maconites were infuriated by occupying Union soldiers desecration of Rose Hill. The Macon Telegraph noted, “The cemetery is visited every day by mourners and others, and on no time on Sabbath afternoons. …these lakes are the resort of soldiers. The river is near enough, and secluded enough for bathing.”

In regular walks to Rose Hill, Nathan Munroe visited the graves of his wife and grandchildren in the fall of 1865. He was happy to see that there was no longer an encampment of Federal troops near the cemetery. He wrote to his daughter Bannie that “he found all quiet and good order,” and sent her a flower from the graves of her two children.

Visiting Macon a couple of years after the war, American writer Bret Harte was sobered by his carriage drive through Rose Hill. The tombs were “ivy shrouded, and black with age, but always showing some sign of recollection in a bouquet of yesterday or an attempt to restore the half-concealed inscription." The cemetery was
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“the burial place of the Confederate dead of Macon; a thousand on the hillside, each name recorded on the little headboard,”

Confederate veterans were also buried in Rose Hill on private lots. There are 882 known burials on these lots, plus the 884 in 'Soldiers' Square', bringing the total of known Confederate soldiers in Rose Hill to 1,746.
Erected 2013 by Macon Civil War Sesquientennial Committee.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesWar, US Civil. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1840.
Location. 32° 50.813′ N, 83° 37.856′ W. Marker is in Macon, Georgia, in Bibb County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Jones Street and Riverside Drive (Georgia Route 87), on the right when traveling west. Marker is adjacent to the flagpole in the "Soldiers' Square" in the northeast section of cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1071 Riverside Drive, Macon GA 31201, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Confederate Memorial Day in Macon (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Nashville South (approx. 0.2 miles away); John Basil Lamar (approx. 0.2 miles away); Alfred Holt Colquitt (approx. ¼ mile away); General Edward Dorr Tracy, Jr. (approx. 0.3 miles away); Oak Ridge Cemetery (approx. 0.3 miles away); Unknown, But Not Forgotten (approx. 0.3 miles away); a different marker also named Oak Ridge Cemetery (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Macon.
Also see . . .  Historic Rose Hill. Friends of Rose Hill (Submitted on November 11, 2016.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 31, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 11, 2016, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. This page has been viewed 536 times since then and 12 times this year. Photo   1. submitted on November 11, 2016, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
Editor’s want-list for this marker. A wide view photo of the marker and the surrounding area together in context. • Can you help?

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Feb. 1, 2023