Spirits Alive at the Eastern Cemetery
Eastern Cemetery view from the south
Take a Stroll Down Funeral Lane in the Eastern Cemetery

Tours Until the End of October!

Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays
11:00am to 12:00pm

Tickets: $10 ($5 for seniors and students)

Join us as we walk the grounds of the oldest historic landscape in Portland, Maine. Our trained guides cover the cemetery's history, prominent historical figures, and early gravestone art. We'd love to have you, and you can even purchase tickets before the tour! All funds go directly back into the cemetery's conservation and educational programs. If you can't make the regularly-scheduled times, let us know! We may be able to arrange a special time for you at no extra charge.

headstone of Jacob and Horatio Noyes
Sketch by Naomi and Emma made in June 2010 during the stone transcription project.

Subterranean Celebrity: Horatio Noyes

Died: December 25, 1821

Horatio Noyes, a “lad of about 14 years of age,” died in a sad accident on Christmas Day 1821. Horatio went to the old First Parish Meeting House that day and found the tower door unlocked, so he climbed the stairs to the belfry. Witnesses reported that he climbed up the steeple, lost his grip, and fell to the ground—nearly 70 feet below. According to the newspaper report, he was “taken up speechless and apparently senseless,” brought to a nearby house, and lived not an hour more.

Horatio is memorialized on the same slate stone as his father Jacob who had died only 18 months earlier at age 52. The marker is decorated with a simple border, urn, and willow tree, and was lettered by stonecutter Bartlett Adams.

In memory of
Mr. Jacob Noyes,
died June 30, 1820,
AEt. 52:
also Horatio, his son
died Dec. 25, 1821.
AEt. 14.

Thanks to Ron Romano for providing information about Horatio Noyes and his stone. You can suggest a subterranean celebrity! Just send an email—it doesn't take much to make a nice little story. An index of all of our Subterranean Celebrities is available.

Early Gravestones in Southern Maine book cover

Gravestones in Southern Maine: The Genius of Bartlett Adams

A book by Ron Romano, Spirits Alive volunteer and Bartlett Adams expert

If you're interested in learning more about the life and times of Bartlett Adams, the Eastern Cemetery's most prolific gravestone cutter, we've got your book! In addition to learning about Adams and his fellow stonecutters, you will discover so much about the Eastern Cemetery, its history, and the history of those interred within it. 

Find copies of the book at local Portland, Maine, bookstores or order from your favorite online retailer.

Ask Amazon to Donate to Spirits Alive

If you're an Amazon shopper, here's an easy way to support your favorite historic Maine cemetery:

  • Go to smile.amazon.com
  • Enter "Spirits Alive" in the box
  • Choose the non-profit in Portland, Maine from the list

Voila! A portion of all of your purchases through smile.amazon.com will go to our efforts to support, conserve and promote this historic outdoor museum. Thank you!

Help the Eastern Cemetery

Support the work of Spirits Alive with your giving

You can help Spirits Alive keep the Eastern Cemetery alive for generations to come. Through your support, you can help us, an ALL-VOLUNTEER organization, to continue to:

  • Keep the gates open – encouraging the community to explore its open and safe green space
  • Offer education about the cemetery and its residents to the public – through tours, lectures, and events
  • Encourage and support the city in keeping the site clean and safe for visitors of all ages
  • Preserve this incredible outdoor museum and sacred historic landscape