Events 2019

Visitors are welcome to step back into history and experience eighty acres of stately trees and statuary in the beautiful blend of nature and art that is Elmwood Cemetery.

Please come by the Victorian Carpenter Gothic Cottage which serves as our Visitor Center for maps, audio tours, picnic tables and handicap accessible restrooms. Research assistance is also available in the cottage, and security is on the grounds during business hours.

Once you register for an event through Eventbrite or over the phone you will be added to the registration list for that event. For Eventbrite registrations, you may print your receipt or save it to your mobile device, but it is not necessary. You can simply give your name, or the name of the purchaser, when you arrive for the event. 

Registration for all events at Elmwood Cemetery is final and non-refundable. 


Auditions: Soul of the City Actors

Community and professional actors welcome

Here's your chance to step back in time and make history.

The Soul of the City Tour of Elmwood Cemetery takes place every October, and this year it's happening on October 24th, 25th, and 26th. Maybe you've heard of it before. It's the event where actors wear historical costumes and portray the interesting individuals who rest at Elmwood Cemetery.

This event is a huge success for Elmwood. Part community theatre, part living history, part museum work, this event celebrates the people who made Memphis a fascinating place. Some of them are famous. Some are infamous. All of them gave a part of themselves during their lives to the fabric of our city's history. 

If you're an actor - professional or volunteer - and you'd like to audition for a role in the tour, then here is your chance to be a part of a very original performance. Email kim [at] elmwoodcemetery [dot] org and we will schedule your audition time on Saturday, July 20th. Please include a headshot (a selfie will do!) with your email. 

Auditions will begin at 8:30 AM. 


Jimmy Ogle's Tour of Elmwood Cemetery

Historian Jimmy Ogle has delivered hundreds of presentations on the history of the city of Memphis and he's always a hit! His work has focused on the Gayoso Bayou, the Commercial Appeal, the wreck of the Sultana, and Memphis history. This walking tour of Elmwood will illuminate Jimmy's favorite sites at the cemetery on the west side of the cemetery grounds, near the beloved Snowden and Overton monuments, "Jeffrey's swing", Dr. D.T. Porter, and so much more. 

Jimmy is a beloved storyteller and public speaker, and advance registration is highly recommended. This tour is expected to sell out. This tour is offered at 9:00 am only. Cost is $20 per person. For more information, call 901-774-3212.

Register today »


Jimmy Ogle's Cotton Men of Elmwood Talk

An indoor presentation

Elmwood Loves Jimmy!  Join us on Saturday, July 27th at 11:00 am in the Lord's Chapel at Elmwood Cemetery for past Shelby County Historian Jimmy Ogle's indoor presentation, "Cotton Men of Elmwood". Elmwood Cemetery is the final resting place for people from all walks of life, and that includes the cotton factors who helped to drive the trade through the city of Memphis. We invite you to hear their stories from one of the midsouth's finest storytellers!

Jimmy is a beloved storyteller and public speaker; advance registration is highly recommended. This seated, indoor, air-conditioned presentation will begin at 11:00 am. Cost is $20 and beverages and light snacks are included. For more information, call 901-774-3212. 

Register today »


Jimmy Ogle's Historic Memphis Riverfront Talk

An indoor presentation

Encore, encore!

Join us on Saturday, July 27th at 1:00 pm in the Lord's Chapel at Elmwood Cemetery for past Shelby County Historian Jimmy Ogle's indoor presentation, The Historic Memphis Riverfront. Mr. Ogle has spent countless hours studying the history of Memphis, our cobblestones, the riverboats and riverboatmen who lived and worked on the Mississippi, and the trade that grew Memphis into a booming metropolis. Join us and learn more about this fascinating part of Memphis history!

Jimmy is a beloved storyteller and public speaker; advance registration is highly recommended. This seated, indoor, air-conditioned presentation will begin at 1:00 pm. Cost is $20 and beverages and light snacks are included. For more information, call 901-774-3212. 

Register today »


The Marvelous Women of Elmwood Cemetery

A Suds & Stories Presentation

The very first person to be buried at Elmwood was a woman. A Civil Rights activist, a beauty queen, suffragists, an explorer, and so many more: the women who are buried at Elmwood Cemetery lived incredibly diverse lives. They contributed to the world we live in, shaping it and improving it for all.

We invite you to join us on Sunday, August 18th at 3 pm for an indoor, seated, and thoroughly air-conditioned presentation by Elmwood's Executive Director Kim Bearden on The Marvelous Women of Elmwood Cemetery. This presentation will last about 45 minutes and wine, other beverages, and snacks are included. The cost is $20 per person.

Join us for this talk and let's celebrate the 100th anniversary of women's suffrage in the US! Call 901-774-3212 for more information. 

Register today »


Yellow Fever: A Tour of the Plague

A Walking Tour of Elmwood

The history of the Yellow Fever epidemics of 1873, 1878, and 1879 can be found at Elmwood Cemetery. The Howard Association, the Citizens' Relief Committee, the Sisters of St. Mary's, and individuals who fought valiantly against the spread of the scourge rest at Elmwood. Join Assistant Director Bob Barnett for an all-walking tour through the cemetery grounds and learn their stories. 

This tour is given by Elmwood's Assistant Director Bob Barnett. It lasts 90 minutes, starts at 10:30 AM, and registration is required. The cost is $20 per person. To register by phone, call 774-3212.  

Register today »


The Voices of Yellow Fever

History Comes Alive

Yellow fever (also known as Yellow Jack, the American Plague and the Saffron Knight) decimated the city of Memphis for much of the 1870's. So many died of the fever or fled that the city lost its charter, becoming a taxing district under Nashville. This plague would claim thousands of lives. Many of the individuals who tried to help stop the scourge of yellow fever rest at Elmwood. 

Join the Elmwood Players as they present a first-person narrative account of what life was like during the yellow fever. You'll meet costumed characters with stories of triumph and tragedy that will leave you breathless.

Drinks and hors d'oeuvres are served with this event, which begins at 6:30 pm in the Chapel.  The cost is $20 per person. Advance registration is required. Call 901-774-3212 for information or to register. 


Register today »


The Swedish Nightingale

A Beethoven Club Concert at Elmwood

Known as the Swedish Nightingale, opera star Jenny Lind was in her heyday in Sweden in the 1840's when she announced her retirement, only to be cajoled to perform 93 door-busting concerts in the U.S., promoted by P.T. Barnum. These concerts earned Lind over $350,000, all of which she donated to charities.  

Her talent lives on. Join us for a performance by Sabrina Laney Warren, soprano, who will appear as Jenny Lind herself! Selections by Stephen Foster and other 19th century composers will be performed in the Lord's Chapel at 3:00 pm. 

If you've never experienced music in the Chapel, then you are in for a real treat! Hors d'oeuvres and beverages will be served at this event. Admission is $20 per person; all proceeds benefit the ongoing historic preservation of Elmwood Cemetery. 

Register today »


Scandals & Scoundrels

Among Elmwood's 75,000 residents are the famous and infamous.  Sinners and saints. Mayors and madams. Politicians and perfectly ordinary citizens. Each of them has a story to tell...and some of those stories don't have happy endings.

Join us for a look at the lives of those who contributed the notorious stories of Memphis history that we love to hear. This tour is for grown-ups only, please. Veteran tour guide Dale Schaefer will be the docent for this tour.

This tour is all-walking and lasts about 90 minutes. Advance registration is required. Cost is $20 per person. Starts at 10:30 am.


Register today »


Soul of the City

History Comes Alive

Coming October 25th and 26th. 

Details will be released soon.  

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