Explore the history, architecture, and people, from the very rich to the very poor, who have chosen Woodmere Cemetery to be their final resting place.
In 1867, a roomful of men gathered in the office of a noted attorney to discuss Detroit's need for a rural cemetery. They decided to form an association and invested their own money to purchase a plot of land that had once been occupied by Native Americans and then French settlers, a few miles from the heart of the city.
They chose this heavily wooded area because it offered many acres of land that could accommodate the growing need for more burial space, and it became the cornerstone of one of the city's oldest and most historic cemeteries, Woodmere Cemetery. Cemetery acreage has been bought and sold, and buildings on the grounds have been raised and later razed. Funeral procedures have changed, as well as cemetery ownership. Still, Woodmere has remained one of Detroit's most beautiful treasures, where visitors can take a historical step back into time.
Through archival images, Detroit's Woodmere Cemetery takes a look at the movers and shakers of Detroit found in these bucolic grounds and glimpses the ordinary citizens who have lived and died through extraordinary circumstances.
About the Author
Gail D. Hershenzon is an elementary teacher in the Detroit Public School District. She volunteers at Woodmere Cemetery, helping those doing family research and conducting cemetery tours. Hershenzon speaks to genealogical groups to facilitate cemetery research.