41 r Central Street

Architectural Description: 

First Period burial ground. Grave markers range from 1723 to present. Markers made of schist, slate, marble, zink and granite display a variety of style changes spanning 300 years of Andover history.

Historical Narrative: 

The South Parish Burial Grounds were established with the Parish in 1709.

The grounds for the meeting house, parsonage, school, and burial grounds were given by John Abbot, the first Deacon, and son of original Andover settler, George Abbot. It is believed that the current grounds were the burial site of the Abbot family. Rev. Phillips encouraged the congregation to remember their loved ones buried in the cemetery between Sunday services as “lessons for the living.”

The first recorded burial is for Robert Russell on December, 13, 1710, three days after the Parish voted on its first pastor, Samuel Phillips. Robert Russell was born on May 27, 1630 in Scotland and came to America in 1640. He was married to Mary Marshall. Robert died on Dec. 3, 1710 at age 80. Rev. Phillips was ordained the same day as The Church of South Parish in Andover was founded, October 17, 1711.

The oldest original remaining stone belongs to Anne Blanchard who died on Febr’y 29th, 1723. Old South was the South Parish cemetery until a second burial-place was laid out in 1754 in the West Parish.

Old South has students and faculty from Phillips Academy and the Andover Theological Seminary before the Chapel Cemetery began in 1810. The first two pastors and families of South Parish, who served 98 years between them, are buried here, as well as many of the founders of the Academy and Seminary, and later The Abbot Female Academy. Ministers from the Methodist and Baptist churches are here, also.
Three of the four captains of the Andover Militia who marched on Concord and Lexington and later Bunker Hill, are buried here with their families, along with 81 other veterans of the American Revolution.

The only remaining head stones for slaves in Andover is here for Pomp Lovejoy (for whom Pomp’s Pond is named) and Rose Coburn, the last slave to die in Andover.
Of the original 35 members of the church, only three original stones remain. Only 113 stones remain before 1800 out of 1500 burials and 33 of those stones are Abbot’s. Over 2800 people are represented on over 1900 gravestones.
Total gravestones: 1930 stones, representing 2854 people. Total broken or missing stones replaced 2001-2006: 72 (over 150 repaired)

Veteran stats: Total veterans, patriots, and Pre-Revolution officers: 274, 150 newly identified.

A searchable burial database is available via the church website; cemetery@southchurch.com

Inventory Data:

StreetCentral St
PlaceAndover Center District
Historic DistrictCentral Street NRH District
Historic NameSouth Parish Burial Ground - South Parish Cemetery
Present UseCemetery
Original UseParish Burial Ground - Cemetery
Construction Date1710
SourceERDS, NERDL, style,
Architectural StyleOther
Outbuildings / Secondary StructuresShed, tomb
Major AlterationsCemetery restoration from 2001-2006. over 150 headstones repaired, reset or replaced.
Acreage7 acres
Map and parcel55-156
Recorded byStack/Mofford, Char Lyons, James S. Batchelder
OrganizationAndover Preservation Commission
Date enteredAugust 25, 2019