Pocahontas Cemetery

The Pocahontas Cemetery is a historic graveyard in the town of Pocahontas, Virginia.

The Pocahontas Cemetery was established following the tragic explosion of the Pocahontas East Mine on March 13, 1884, which resulted in the loss of at least 114 miners’ lives. 1 2 The bodies were recovered and laid to rest in April, marking the creation of the town’s first cemetery. The cemetery, spanning 11.7 acres, was made possible by the Southwest Virginia Improvement Company, who donated the land to the trustees of the Pocahontas Cemetery Association in 1888. 2

Notably, the cemetery showcased the diversity of the community during subsequent burials. People of different ethnic and religious backgrounds were often interred in specific areas, reflecting the town’s uncommon cultural mix at the time. 2 Gravestones featured inscriptions in various languages, including Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, and Russian. Many of these tombstones also displayed European-inspired funerary art. 1

In the 1930s, the Pocahontas Cemetery Association was dissolved, and the property ownership was transferred to the Pocahontas Fuel Company, which had succeeded the Southwest Virginia Improvement Company. 1 Eventually, the company handed over the ownership to the town.

After enduring years of neglect, the restoration of the Pocahontas Cemetery is currently underway through a collaborative effort involving Historic Pocahontas, Inc., the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, and the Town of Pocahontas. 2



  1. Pocahontas Cemetery.” The Historical Marker Database, 14 Nov. 2015.
  2. A History of Pocahontas Cemetery.” Visit Tazewell County, Virginia.

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