Old Cemeteries of Milwaukee
Information from an article written in the Milwaukee Journal, Oct. 31, 1920, with additional information as it is collected added to this list.
Busy City Covers the Site of Cemeteries of Pioneer Days In combination with an article written by Mrs. H.C. Blanding and information from the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies - Cemetery Project
INDIAN BURIAL GROUNDS
An Old Indian Cemetery was located at the extreme end of Old Point
No White Man's cemetery was west of the Milwaukee River in 1837.
There was an Indian burial ground on the East side from the downtown section. It crowned the bluff, which then rose from a level back of Powell's Brewery on Huron street. (possibly the same cemetery listed above)
FIRST CEMETERY DEDICATED IN MILWAUKEE
The first cemetery dedicated in Milwaukee was formerly located on the Southeast corner of Wisconsin and Broadway. It was possibly called Milwaukee's Pioneer Cemetery. 50 bodies buried there in one month during the first Cholera epidemic. The child of the first white woman to settle in Milwaukee, Mrs. Samuel Brown, was buried there. The cemetery was moved in about 1850 or thereabout to what is now Forest Home Cemetery.
OLD EASTSIDE CEMETERY
The Old Eastside Cemetery was the first cemetery to be divided into city lots and was located in the First Ward, North of Lyon Street and east of Cass. Remains of the dead ere reinterred in new grounds on the South and West Side. The catholic remains were moved to the Spring Street Catholic Cemetery.
SPRING STREET HILL CEMETERY
There was also a burial ground on Spring Street used by Protestants. As the city began to close around it, the bodies were removed to Forest Home or to Lutheran Cemeteries.
SOUTH SIDE CEMETERY
The Southside Cemetery was between Grove, Florida, Virginia and First Av. Bodies were moved to Forest Home to make room for residences.
VAN BUREN AND PLEASANT STREETS
No futher information is available on this cemetery. Removal time and place unknown.
This cemetery was located on the Old Mukwonago Road, near Muskego Road
Cemetery near the present Humboldt Blvd, not far from the Milw. River. There is no definate facts about this burial ground. No one knows whether the remains were removed or if buildings were built on top of them. Bill Hooker in his "Glimpses of An Earlier Milwaukee" wrote that according to recollections of old timers, this graveyard was bounded by what became Astor, Racine, Kewaunee, and Brady Streets.
There was also a cemetery on the East Side upon the block bounded by Astor, Racine, Kewaunee and Brady streets. I have helped to bury quite a number there. this burial ground was abandoned long ago and all or nearly all the bodies removed and with the exception of Potters Field, near the hospital, there is now no cemetery upon the East Side. Source: Pioneer History of Milwaukee: From the First American Settlement in 1833 to 1841 By James Smith Buck
In 1847, during the "ship fever" (cholera) epidemic, there were many burials there.
Listed in an 1857-58 City Directory Above Fifteenth Street between the Lisbon Plank Road and Fond du Lac Road. (unsure exactly which cemetery this is)
CEMETERY BY THE LAKE
Same source indicates there was a cemetery just east of Broadway and Michigan Street. This was soon abandoned as it was in the center of Milwaukee. Possibly the same as Pioneer cemetery above.
The following is from the Pioneer History of Milwaukee: From the First American Settlement in 1833 to 1841 By James Smith Buck
OLD WESTSIDE CEMETERY
The first cemetery on the West Side was upon that block lying between Spring, Sycamore, Eighth and Ninth streets, in that portion lying west of the alley; St. James Church now stands upon this spot. I have helped to bury quite a number there; no burials have taken place however, for many years upon that ground, and all who were buried there have been removed. (1883 news article states not all were removed).
The second was on the block bounded by Thirteenth, Chestnut, Poplar (now Cold Spring avenue) and Summer streets. This ground is now built over, the bodies having all been removed. (German Protestant Cemetery/Gruenhagen's Cemetery)
There are quite a number of interments upon the south west corner of Ogden and Astor streets, but who they were or when interred there I am unable to ascertain, there were some twenty in all; this ground is now entirely built over.
Source of the following: The Milwaukee Sentinel, (Milwaukee, WI) Sunday, June 20, 1886; pg. 2; Issue 34; col C
Bones in Bricks A Large Brick Yard Located Where an Old Cemetery Used to Be
Bones in Bricks
A Large Brick Yard Located Where an Old Cemetery Used to be"Many of the bricks in some fo the finest buildings in the city are partly composed of human bones," said a well-known builder yesteray. "This may seem a little odd to you at first, but it is true, for I've known it for several years. One of the yards producing the largest number of bricks of any in the state-is located on an old burying-ground from which only a few of the bodies interred ther were removed before the manufacture of brick from the clay began. I have actually seen small pieces of bone pressed into these bricks."