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Dating to about 1646, two years after English colonists from Plymouth settled Eastham, this gravesite was established to house the dead. The burial site houses dozens of the dead from the early years of the town of Eastham, in the Nauset region of Cape Cod. To this day, the graveyard still houses the resting sites of many early settlers, including three of the original Mayflower voyagers. The site is on the National Register of Historical Places, being added on May 12, 1999.


  • Historic photo of the Burying Ground.
  • Memorial Marker for Giles Hopkins, Mayflower Pilgrim.
  • A sign in the area, explaining the site.
  • Gravestone Detail.

The oldest cemetery in Eastham, dating back to 1646, this burial ground houses several colonists who all perished during the early days of the country’s history, predating even the French and Indian Wars and the American Revolution. Three of the original passengers from the Mayflower’s voyage to the new world are housed here.

Over the years, townhouses have been constructed in the area, but each one has been closed over time, in favor of using a more modern town hall. Cove Burying Ground served as the state’s only gravesite until 1720 and remained in used until 1770. Nowadays, the burying site remains an important part of the area’s cultural history and serves as a grim reminder of how far we’ve come since colonization.

Cove Burying Ground. Wikipedia. January 31, 2017. Accessed October 10, 2018. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cove_Burying_Ground. 

Cove Burying Ground Handout. Cape Cod Gravestones. n d. Accessed October 10, 2018. http://www.capecodgravestones.com/covehand.html. 

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