Founded in 1850,Oakland Cemetery is Atlanta’s third largest public green space and the city’s oldest cemetery. Located just minutes from downtown Atlanta, the historic cemetery is the final resting place of many of the people who settled and built the city of Atlanta. Founded in 1850. It is the final resting place of most of the city’s most noted and well- loved citizens such as Gone with the Wind author, Margret Mitchell, golf legend Bobby Jones and one of Atlanta’s most famous mayors Maynard Jackson. Oakland is much more than a cemetery, it is home to some amazing sculpture and architecture and  is a botanical preserve, overflowing with ancient oaks and majestic, ancient oaks and magnolias, just name a few.

Highlights

  • Tours – Oakland cemetery offers guided overview tours every weekend and special topic tours every weekend mid-March through mid-October. These tours are designed to not only entertain but to educate and enlighten visitors on the history of the cemetery. There are also guided tours that can be scheduled for private groups and schools as well as self-guided tours for you to discover Oakland at your own pace.

Ticket Price
Adults $12
Children (with ID) $6
Seniors (65 and older) $6
Families: (2 adults and 2 children) $28
Historic Oakland Foundation Members Free
  • Visitors Center and Museum Shop – Not too many cemeteries can boast a gift shop. Oakland Cemetery’s Visitor’s Center and Museum Shop offers information on the grounds and the history of the cemetery and carries a unique variety of merchandise, from books covering topics such and the Civil War, death and dying, cemetery symbolism and the history of Atlanta, to T-shirts, bookmarks, key chains, postcards, gift items and hand crafted jewellery and more.
  • Gardens – Oakland isn’t simply a cemetery, it is a public garden with beauty that unfolds during every season. Historically each plot was gardened by families in tribute to their loved ones. The styles and flower choices were unique to that family and often included the loved ones favorite flowers. This gave some solace to grieving families as they created a small slice of paradise on earth to honor those who have gone on before them. Today, the Victorian gardens continue to be a source of pleasure for visitors during every season.

Prices

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Tips

  • Free Parking – There is Free parking available in a lot just outside the cemetery gates and on the street at the intersection of Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive and Oakland Avenue. You can drive inside the gates but please pull your vehicle off to the right of any of the paved roads and be sure not to damage any walls or trees. Don’t forget to lock your car and do not leave valuables in sight.
  • Bring a picnic lunch – There are plenty of spaces for you to lay out a blanket and lunch in the gardens. Trash receptacles are provided for your convenience so please utilize them for any trash you may have. If picnicking isn’t your thing, feel free to visit any one of our neighboring restaurants.
  • EventsCheck the website for tour times and any events that are happening. Oakland hosts a variety of special events throughout the year such as the Run Like Hell 5K; Sunday in the Park Victorian street festival, Tunes From the Tombs, the summer music festival and the Capturing the Spirit of Oakland Halloween tours.

Transport

  • Directions From MARTA – Exit the King Memorial Station to Decatur Street. Head west (take a left) to Grant Street. Turn left onto Grant Street and follow to Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SE. Take left onto Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. The main gates of Oakland Cemetery will be straight ahead. The walk will take about 7-10 minutes.
  • From I-85/I-75 South – Take exit 247 to merge onto I-20 E toward Augusta. Take exit 59A for Boulevard toward Zoo Atlanta/Cyclorama. Turn left onto Boulevard SE. Turn left onto Memorial Dr SE. Turn right onto Oakland Ave SE.  Oakland gates will be on your right.
  • From I-85/I-75 North – Take exit 247 for Interstate 20/Ralph D Abernathy Freeway toward Birmingham/Augusta. Keep right at the fork, follow signs for I-20 E/Augusta and merge onto Interstate 20 E. Take exit 59A for Boulevard toward Zoo Atlanta/Cyclorama. Turn left onto Boulevard SE. Turn left onto Memorial Dr SE. Turn right onto Oakland Ave SE.  Oakland gates will be on your right.
  • From I-20 East – Take exit 59A for Boulevard toward Zoo Atlanta/Cyclorama. Turn left onto Boulevard SE. Turn left onto Memorial Dr SE. Turn right onto Oakland Ave SE.  Oakland gates will be on your right.
  • From I-20 West – Take exit 59A toward Memorial Dr/Glenwood Ave.  Follow signs for M L King Jr Natl Hist Site. Turn right onto Boulevard SE. Take the 2nd left onto Memorial Dr SE.  Turn right onto Oakland Ave SE. Oakland gates will be on your right.

History

Oakland Cemetery is the oldest cemetery in Atlanta, Founded in 1850, its original name was “Atlanta Cemetery” and it stood on six acres of land. It was later renamed Oakland in 1872 for the large number of oak and magnolia trees that surrounded the area. While the rest of the city burned from Gen. Sherman’s March to the Sea in 1864, the original six acres of Oakland remained and is now one of the oldest historical plots in Atlanta.

Interesting Facts

  • Among Oakland’s famous residents are Margret Mitchell, author of Gone with the Wind, golf legend, Bobby Jones and several former Atlanta Mayors including Maynard Jackson, one of the namesakes of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Airport.
  • People often leave golf balls, tees and clubs at the gravesite of Bobby Jones.
  • There are only approximately 40,000 grave markers at Oakland but records indicate more than 70,000 people are interred here. There are 3,000 unmarked Confederate graves and approximately 7,500 buried in Potter’s Field without markers.
  • Oakland consists of 48 acres and 14,000 trees some as old as 200.

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