Bellefontaine Cemetery, located in St. Louis, Missouri, is a historic burial ground that serves as the final resting place for many notable individuals who have made significant contributions to various fields, including politics, art, literature, and business. Established in 1849, the cemetery is not only a place of remembrance but also a picturesque park, featuring stunning architecture and beautifully landscaped grounds. In this article, we will explore 10 famous graves in Bellefontaine Cemetery, shedding light on the lives and legacies of these influential individuals.
William Clark (1770-1838):
William Clark, the American explorer and leader of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Clark played a crucial role in the westward expansion of the United States and his expedition opened up new frontiers. His grave serves as a reminder of his exploratory achievements and his contributions to American history.
Adolphus Busch (1839-1913):
Adolphus Busch, the co-founder of the Anheuser-Busch brewing company, has his final resting place in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Busch’s innovative marketing strategies helped establish the iconic Budweiser brand. His grave commemorates his entrepreneurial success and his impact on the brewing industry.
Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975):
Thomas Hart Benton, the American painter and muralist, rests in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Benton’s works depicted scenes of American life and he played a significant role in the Regionalist art movement. His grave serves as a tribute to his artistic talent and his influence on American art.
Susan Blow (1843-1916):
Susan Blow, an influential educator and advocate for early childhood education, is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Blow is known as the “Mother of the Kindergarten” for introducing the concept of kindergarten education to the United States. Her grave honors her pioneering work in education and her commitment to children’s development.
Thomas S. Eliot (1818-1862):
Thomas S. Eliot, a prominent businessman and philanthropist, rests in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Eliot played a vital role in the development of St. Louis, serving as the president of the board of directors for the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad. His grave serves as a reminder of his contributions to the city’s growth and prosperity.
Adolphus Washington Greely (1844-1935):
Adolphus Washington Greely, an American polar explorer and military officer, is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Greely led the ill-fated Lady Franklin Bay Expedition to the Arctic and played a crucial role in advancing scientific knowledge about the region. His grave commemorates his exploratory achievements and his dedication to scientific exploration.
Virginia Minor (1824-1894):
Virginia Minor, a women’s suffrage leader and advocate for women’s rights, has her final resting place in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Minor was a key figure in the suffrage movement and her efforts paved the way for women’s right to vote. Her grave serves as a reminder of her activism and her contributions to the fight for gender equality.
Sara Teasdale (1884-1933):
Sara Teasdale, a renowned American poet, rests in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Teasdale’s lyrical poetry explored themes of love, nature, and the human experience, earning her critical acclaim and a devoted following. Her grave is a tribute to her poetic talent and her lasting impact on literature.
Edward Bates (1793-1869):
Edward Bates, a prominent lawyer and politician, is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Bates served as the U.S. Attorney General under President Abraham Lincoln and played a significant role in shaping American jurisprudence. His grave serves as a reminder of his legal career and his contributions to the nation.
Kate Chopin (1850-1904):
Kate Chopin, an influential American author and feminist, rests in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Chopin’s works, including the iconic novel “The Awakening,” challenged societal norms and explored women’s independence and self-discovery. Her grave commemorates her literary achievements and her contribution to feminist literature.
Bellefontaine Cemetery stands as a testament to the lives and legacies of these remarkable individuals. The cemetery’s serene beauty and historical significance provide visitors with an opportunity to pay homage to these influential figures and reflect on their lasting contributions to their respective fields and to society as a whole.