Famous People Buried in Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn

Green-Wood cemetery entrance

Have you been to Green-Wood Cemetery?

Its beauty is only matched by its history, art, architecture and residents.

If you’ve never been, it’s a must see.

If you’ve been, then you know.

Green-Wood was built before Central Park and was part of the rural cemetery movement, which believed in creating cemeteries that were like parks. It was a tourist attraction in the mid 19th century, much like Niagara Falls. Half a million people visited a year! Anyone who was anyone wanted to be buried there, so the cemetery is home to the who’s who of New York and Brooklyn celebrities, inventors and historical figures.

The beautiful 478 acre park was chartered by the State of New York on April 18, 1838. So today is its anniversary!

Let’s enter the gothic revival style gates and take a peak at who’s inside!

Green-Wood quote

Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988)

Basquiat tomb

Basquiat’s headstone

Brooklyn-born Jean-Michel Basquiat rose to fame as a graffiti artist named “SAMO” and Neo-Expressionist painter in the 1980s who collaborated with Andy Warhol.

Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)

Leonard Bernstein quote
Leonard Bernstein’s headstone (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) Leonard Bernstein was one of the first American conductors to lead the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and composed the score for West Side Story.

Horace Greeley (1811-1872)

Greeley monument
Horace Greeley’s Grave Horace Greeley was a famous newspaper editor for the New York Tribune and politician, best known for saying, “Go West, young man”.

DeWitt Clinton (1769-1828)

dewitt monument

Statue of DeWitt Clinton at Green-Wood

New York Governor and “Father of the Erie Canal”, DeWitt Clinton‘s body was moved to Green-Wood 16 years after his death in 1844 to attract tourists.

Rev. Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887)

Henry Ward Beecher

Rev. Henry Ward Beecher was the first pastor of the Plymouth Church in Brooklyn and brother to Harriet Beecher Stowe who wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

Frederick Augusto Otto Schwarz (1826-1887)

Schwarz monuments

Here is the grave of the German immigrant Frederick Augusto Otto Schwarz who started F.A.O. Schwarz in Baltimore.

William M. “Boss” Tweed (1823-1878)

This is the burial site of notorious New York political boss William “Boss” Tweed, whose Tammany Hall political machine ran New York in the 1800s.

Elias Howe Jr. (1819-1867)

Howe monument

Elias Howe Jr. invented and patented the sewing machine. The Singer sewing machine company tried stealing his idea until Howe took them to court and won.

John Anderson (1812-1881)

John Anderson monument

Ever hear the Edgar Allan Poe story “The Mystery of Marie Rogêt“? It was based on the disappearance and murder of Mary Rogers, who was John Anderson’s employee.

This just scratches the surface of who is buried at Green-Wood Cemetery. Experience more of Green-Wood’s awesome history on our Best of Brooklyn Tour!

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