Cemeteries and Archaeological Resources

New Hanover County has a rich history that contains hundreds of historical, cultural, and archaeological sites. Click the tabs below to learn more about these resources.

New Hanover County Government is responsible for maintaining the abandoned cemeteries in the county. There are approximately 100 abandoned cemeteries, with some located deep in the woods while others are visible from the road.

Cemeteries vary in age and condition, some dating back to the late 1700’s. Depending on their condition, cemeteries need simple vegetation removal or more complicated headstone resetting and repair.

Adopt A Cemetery Program

Volunteer groups are needed to help maintain the county’s abandoned cemeteries. Groups will be matched to cemeteries according to their skill level, number of volunteers, desired location, and other criteria to ensure project success. Volunteer group activities include but are not limited to raking and removing vegetation; mowing grass; repairing, cleaning, and resetting stones; mapping locations of grave sites; historical research; fence erection or repair; and photographing the sites. New Hanover County can provide instruction and assistance for volunteer groups. Volunteer groups will be recognized for their adoption with a sign provided by New Hanover County.

For more information, please email us at: adoptacemetery@nhcgov.com.
View a map of cemeteries located in New Hanover County »

Volunteers in Action

New Hanover County has hundreds of archaeological sites identified by the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. Twenty-eight sites were selected to be protected by the county’s Conservation Overlay District regulations.

View a map of protected archaeological resources »

In 1985, the New Hanover County Planning Department and the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, Division of Archives and History, conducted an architectural inventory to document the historic and architectural resources of New Hanover County. One hundred forty-three structures were documented in the Historic Architecture of New Hanover County North Carolina. The historic structures built between 1830 and 1940 include commercial, educational, religious, and residential structures, as well as bridges and piers.

Engineering: 230 Government Center Dr, Suite 160 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7139 • Fax 910-798-7051