Historic City Cemeteries & Burial Parks

The City of San Antonio maintains nine historic cemeteries on the City's east side.

Historic City Cemeteries Contact Information:

  • For information on Interments, call  210.207.2883
  • For information on burial records, call  210.207.2500
  • For authorization for improvements, call  210.207.2883

History

San Antonio grew rapidly after Texas’ statehood in 1846, and the City Council faced many challenges, including the need for new cemeteries. The old City Cemetery (today’s Milam Park) was full and in 1853, the City Council selected a new burial ground east of downtown Powder House Hill.

The hill was part of San Antonio’s original land grant and was named for buildings constructed there by the Spanish Military to store gun powder. Council designated 20 acres for the new cemetery and began to sell individual lots. Land was also donated or sold to fraternal organizations, churches and military organizations to bury their dead. By 1854, Alamo Masonic Lodge and the International Order of Odd Fellows had opened cemeteries adjacent to City Cemetery #1.

In the next 50 years, a total of 31 cemeteries covering 103 acres were established on Powder House Hill, including those Anglo and African American lodges, Catholic and Lutheran churches, Jewish synagogues and the U.S. government. The Parks and Recreation Department assumed responsibility for the City cemeteries in 1901 and soon began to search for a new site. San Jose Cemetery opened in 1922. Many San Antonians responsible for the City’s early development are buried in the East Side Cemetery complex and a visit there offers a rich history lesson.

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Thursday, February 23, 2017