Shockoe Burying Ground is replete in interest because of its antiquity and of the many illustrious early Virginians who rest within its walls. The original plot was bought by the city in 1797, and additional acreage acquired in 1832 and 1850, when it was described as “city poor house, hospital, powder magazine, and new burying ground on Shockoe Hill.”
This sacred spot is located at the north end of Second Street, and overlooks a deep valley through which Bacon’s Quarters Branch makes it way to the James River. The branch was named for the first “Rebel” whose headquarters were near its source.
Among the illustrious dead in Shockoe are: Chief Justice John Marshall and his wife; Elizabeth Byrd Nicholas, a great-great-granddaughter of William Byrd; Mary Willis Ambler, daughter of John Ambler of Jamestown Island; Micjah Clarke, a distinguished surgeon in the War of 1S12; John Minor Botts, brilliant lawyer and statesman; John Wickham who defended Aaron Burr; Lucy Tailor, “a faithful negro mammy,” buried with the family she adored and served; Colonel Claude Crozet, a soldier of Napoleon’s, and one of the founders of West Point Military Academy; Jane Stith Stanard, the “Helen” of Poe’s dreams; Parson John D. Blair, early churchman of the city; Peter Francisco, “Hercules of the Revolutionary War,” Patrick Henry Aylett, Joseph Mayo, Governor William H. Cabell and Benjamin Watkins Leigh, orator, lawyer and statesman-their names are legion.