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The Past, Present, and Future of the Grave

April 16, 2023 , 12:00pm 1:30pm

old gravestone photo
Credit: Evan Rabeck

Rain date: Sunday, April 23rd

In the 185 years since Green-Wood’s founding, a lot has changed in the way the dead are cared for in the US. The introduction of embalming, the rise of cremation, a recent return to green burial, the list goes on and on.

This walk will be led by Allison C. Meier, longtime Green-Wood tour guide and author of the recently published Grave (2023), part of the Object Lessons series published by Bloomsbury.

Price: $25, and $20 for members

Walking Tour
(see details below)

Her new book explores the past, present, and potential futures of the American grave, focusing on how deathcare has transformed over time and continues to evolve with the introduction of new ideas like human composting and illuminated biomass. Visitors will explore this complex history through the lens of Green-Wood, where grand mausoleums and Victorian statuary mingle with columbaria for cremated bodies and a new area that centers communal memorialization and green burial. 

Before Purchasing A Ticket, Please Note:

  • COVID-19 Policy: In accordance with New York State and CDC guidance, masks are optional. Attendees must follow ALL instructions and guidance from Cemetery staff and ambassadors.
  • Tickets: There are no paper or e-tickets! Attendees will be checked in by name.
  • Where To Go: Check-in takes place at the meadow near the Main Entrance at Fifth Avenue and 25th Street (500 25th Street).
  • For Your Safety: We strongly encourage attendees to wear suitable footwear.The route includes several steep hills, some stairs, as well as grassy and uneven terrain. There is no place to sit down during the tour. Due to the challenging nature of the route, this tour is not ADA accessible and is not recommended for children under the age of 10.DA accessible and is not recommended for children under the age of 10.
  • A Little More About Safety: Unless it is a medical emergency, it is not possible to leave during the tour. Please consider your own abilities–as well as those in your party–before purchasing tickets.
  • Refunds and exchanges: Ticket sales are final. No exchanges or refunds unless the tour is canceled.
  • Inclement Weather Policy: We monitor the weather throughout the day for the best chance of proceeding with the tour, and will not make a final decision until at least 3 hours before the start of the tour. Cancellations will be announced via Eventbrite email blasts, so check your email and spam folders.
  • Feeling Sick? Stay home if you are feeling sick or running a fever.

Not a Member?

Click here for all of our membership levels and information.

Already a Member?

Click the gray tickets button to activate the Eventbrite pop-up, then click Enter promo code. Type in your ID number and apply your discount.


Don’t know your Member ID number? Not sure which ticket or membership type to order? Call 718-210-3080 or email contactus@green-wood.com with any questions.