Oakland Cemetery

This Cemetery is located on a well-chosen site on Decatur Street, well out of the path of Atlanta and future development plans. The beginning site consisted of eight acres, rapidly expanding to the present 88 acres. The cemetery looks like a miniature metropolis. It was the city’s only public burial ground for 35 years. Citizens of all races and classes were laid to rest here.
During the War Between the States the city hospitals were crowded with wounded and dying soldiers. There was a great demand for burial space; therefore, a portion of the cemetery was set a side for Confederate soldiers. There are nearly 3,000 Confederate soldiers buried here, many of whom are unknown. In the last row of Section “C”, there is 20 Union soldiers who died in Confederate hospitals. Some were relocated after the war. Today there are 100,000 or more of Atlanta’s citizenry interred in Oakland Cemetery.

26 April 1874 this 65 foot obelisk was dedicated by the Ladies Memorial Association. At that time it was the tallest structure in Atlanta. The Romanesque style obelisk, was carved from Stone Mountain granite. The base was dedicated on 15 October 1870, the date being Confederate General Robert E. Lee's funeral in Virginia. It was completed four years later. It reads:

"Our Confederate Dead

The Lion of Atlanta
Monument to the
"Unknown Confederate Dead"

Oakland cemetery is located on Oakland Avenue. Founded in 1850, the Victorian Cemetery contains majestic oaks and some of the city’s oldest magnolia trees. The neoclassic tombs are found throughout the 88 acre cemetery. The large granite monument "The Lion" is dedicated to the unknown Confederate Dead. It was erected 1894 by the Ladies Memorial Association. The Lion is sculpted from a single piece of Tate marble. The marble was supplied by the Tate, Georgia Marble Company and was sculpted by T. M. Brady of Canton, Georgia. This massive monument weighs more that 15 tons. In 1894 it was the largest block of marble quarried in America. The figure of the lion is 9 feet long and rest upon a rustic base of approximately 10 feet. The monument depicts the lion fallen on the Confederate Flag which he clinches in one paw. Beneath him are several muskets and a saber.

At the suggestion of Col. John Milledge to the Ladies Memorial Association of Atlanta the monument emulates the Lion of Lucerne which was dedicated to the memory of the Swiss Guards who were massacred defending Marie Antoinette.

The Fence around the Lion

This fence presented April, 1995 to Oakland Cemetery by the descendants of the four Foute brothers of Roane County, Tennessee, who loyally served in the Army of Tennessee, Co. F, 26th Inf. They are still remembered.

John Brown Gordon

This monument is in Oakland Cemetery behind the grave of General Iverson. The monument has wreaths on the four corners and on the side it reads:

"John B. Gordon
Feb. 6, 1832-Jan 9, 1904

Under that it reads:

"Fanny Haralson wife of John B. Gordon
Sept 18, 1837-Apr. 28, 1931.
On the ground level someone has placed a new Government issue tombstone. It has the Southern Cross of Honor with a wreath circled in the center. It reads:

"John Brown Gordon
Lieut. Gen. 6th Ala. Brigade
Confederate States Army
Feb. 6, 1832-Jan. 9, 1904

Joseph Emerson Brown
Elizabeth Grisham Brown

At the very top of this monument is the Angel Gabriel looking toward heaven with trumpet in hand. Draped flowers and other decorations are on the long pedestal. Lower down on each side of the tall pedestal there are two angels leaning on their trumpets. Joseph Brown's grave is marked with a cross on top and it reads: "Joseph E. Brown", on the other side it reads: "I know that my redeemer liveth". His wife is buried beside him and there is a nice marble marker with her picture etched in the marble, elaborately decorated. On the monument it reads" "Near this stone repose the remains of Joseph Emerson Brown. He was born in Pickens District S. C. April 15, 1821. Died hoping and relying though frail for smiling in the future world of all upon the mercies of Jesus Christ and the atonement made by him in Atlanta Georgia November 30, 1894. He was State Senator from 1819 -1850. Judge of Superior Court 1855 -1856. Governor of Georgia four successive terms 1857-1865. Chief Justice of Georgia 1868 -1870, United States Senator from 1880 -1891. President of the Western and Atlantic Railroad 1870-1890. His history is written in the Annals of Georgia." Under the angel on the left it reads,

"Children of Joseph E. and Elizabeth Brown: Franklin Pierce Brown, born April 15,1852 Canton Ga. died Atlanta, December 16,1871; Charles McDonald Brown, Julius L .Brown, Elijah Alexander Brown, born September 4,1857 – January 28, 1926; Mary Virginia Connally, Joseph Mackey Brown, born December 28,1851 Canton, Ga. died Marietta, Ga. March 3, 1932; Sally Eugenia Brown, born June 11,1862 Canton,Ga. died Atlanta, Ga. January 17,1942; George Marion Brown born, Oct. 5, 1865 Milledgeville, GA. died in Atlanta, Ga., May 16,1942."
To the left under the other angel it repeats "Franklin Pierce Brown born April 15, 1852 died December 16, 1871". The remaining inscription is illegible. On the back it reads: "By the side of her husband, Elizabeth Grisham Brown, wife of Joseph E. Brown, daughter of (the names of her parents are illegible)". The children, Franklin Pierce Brown, Charles McDonald Brown, Julius L. Brown, and Joseph Mackey Brown are buried in the area of their parents. Joseph Mackey Brown was elected Governor of Georgia two terms 1909-1913.


The monument reads

RESURGENS 1847-1895 Atlanta Georgia

These words are encircled with an eagle and his wings spread open. The monument is in Zmemory of Father Thomas O'Reilly who in November 1864 by his courageous protest to the federal forces preparing to burn and evacuate the city saved from the conflagration the following buildings then located in this vicinity the Atlanta City Hall and courthouse, the church of the immaculate conception, St Phillips Episcopal Church, Trinity Methodist Church, the Second Baptist Church and the Central Presbyterian Church. Erected by the Atlanta Historical Society, The five Churches named and the city of Alanta. 1945.

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