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Old Jonesborough Cemetery Inventory

Identifier: AppMs-0503

Scope and Contents

During the summers of 1995 and 1996, the Historic Preservation class of the Governor's School for the Scientific Exploration of Tennessee Heritage, taught by Joe Spence, conducted a field survey of the cemetery. Students gleaned and compiled data from the headstones in order to provide the first complete inventory of gravesites found in the cemetery.

The Old Jonesborough Cemetery Inventory Collection consists of a report (which includes data from tombstones, a cemetery layout plan, and photographic images of selected gravesites) and data sheets compiled by students as part of a class survey project of the cemetery in the summers of 1995 and 1996. Overall, important information regarding personal and family data related to the general and family history of Jonesborough, Tennessee is contained in the material. For reporting purposes, the cemetery was divided into sections A-M (a layout drawing in the report provides orientation for the researcher) with students assigned to specific sections for data collection. Sections N-T represent the African-American gravesites in the cemetery. Though no map of this area of the cemetery is provided, the report describes section N beginning at the bottom of the hill and continuing upward to Section T. A basic inventory of these gravesites is included in the report, while noting that there are a number of unmarked graves.

The historic Jonesborough Cemetery is located on Rocky Hill off East Main Street in Jonesborough, Tenn. In 1803, Jonesborough commissioners purchased the property for use as a town cemetery for $30. An additional two acres was purchased to extend the cemetery in 1844. It served as the town's first cemetery, gradually being superseded by Maple Lawn Cemetery (established in 1890). A self-perpetuating board of trustees has responsibility for the property. The cemetery contains the graves of many prominent early citizens and families of Jonesborough, including members of the Aiken, Blair, Deaderick, Dosser, Hoss, Lucky, Reeves, Rhea, Sevier, and Slemons families, as well as Confederate General Alfred E. Jackson.


  • Creation: 1995-1996


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.


0.30 linear feet

Language of Materials



The collection is arranged with the completed report and report printout filed first, followed by the cemetery sections as divided for study by the students. Within each section, the names of those interred in the cemetery are arranged alphabetically.

Method of Acquisition

The Old Jonesborough Cemetery Inventory Collection was donated to the Archives of Appalachia by Joe Spence, Knoxville, Tenn., a teacher in the Governor's School for Tennessee Heritage, ETSU, on July 10, 1997.

Processing Information

Ned Irwin completed processing, and the collection was opened to researchers in July 1997.

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Archives of Appalachia Repository

PO Box 70295
344 J.L. Seehorn Jr. Rd.
Johnson City TN 37614 USA