The Greenville Standard
Mollie Waters, a teacher at Lurleen B. Wallace Community College’s Greenville Campus, will be hosting a tour of Pioneer Cemetery on Oct. 22 at 2 p.m.
Waters says cemeteries have held a special place in her heart ever since she was young.
“When I was little girl,” said Waters, “my grandparents used to take trips to cemeteries all around the county on Sunday afternoons, and I would go with them. They were the ones who taught me the meanings of symbols and the unusual architecture in cemeteries. I’ve loved cemeteries ever since.”
Waters said the purpose of the upcoming Pioneer Cemetery tour is to educate those who attend on the things she learned from her grandparents and from reading about cemeteries and burial practices.
“Pioneer is such a beautiful place to have a tour,” said Waters. “Although it is a small cemetery, only about two acres, a lot of the early settlers in the community are buried there, and it has some beautiful markers. You will find a lot of anchors, doves, roses, ivy, lambs, and so much more. Each of those things means something different, and those meanings tell the living a little bit about the deceased.”
Waters said the cemetery also has some nice architectural features.
“It has a mausoleum, some cast iron grave covers, and some shell graves,” said Waters.
Waters says she tells some history of the cemetery at the beginning of the tour, but then she also shares stories about the lives of some of the departed.
While the tour is free, Waters says donations will be accepted, and they will go to the cost of preserving the cemetery.
“A lot of work has been done in the cemetery over the past decade,” says Waters, “but more work is still needed. Hopefully, people who attend will understand the importance of this cemetery and why it should be preserved after attending the event.”
Pioneer Cemetery is located at the intersection of Adams, Walnut, and South Park Streets across from City Hall and next to the First United Methodist Church.