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Destination Westport: Art from the Beyond

If you are itching to get out into the fresh air this fall, head to the Westport Historical Society for their walk on October 4 from 9:30 am to 10:30 am that will focus on cemetery art. Ever wondered why you shouldn’t walk on a grave? Or why there are so many skulls on tombstones?  Join WM Director of Programs and Education Nicole Carpenter at the Greens Farms Lower Cemetery to discuss the 18th and 19th-century superstitions associated with cemeteries and the dearly departed. Learn what urns, willow trees, and other artistic symbols on gravestones mean as you meander through the cemetery.

Park on Nyala Farms Rd and meet on the marked green at the back entrance to the cemetery. Per State of Connecticut mandates, social distancing practices will be in effect, and masks are required unless the use of a mask or cloth face covering by anyone for whom doing so would be contrary to his or her health or safety because of a medical condition.

Tickets $10. Reservations are required, register online here. Tickets are nonrefundable. In the event you must cancel, we will consider your purchase a donation and will happily issue you a donation receipt.  Space is limited to 10 persons per tour. Additional tours may be added if demand requires. If you wish to join but the tour has been sold out, please email your interest to programs@westporthistory.org

About the Historic Greens Farm Cemetery

According to local historian George Jennings, the colonial Burying Ground, was set aside from the town commons on the south side of the country road (Greens Farms Road) just west of Muddy Creek about 1725. That it was a set aside is proven by the fact that no deed or gift of the burying place has ever been located, according to Jennings. Also, early in the ministry of Hezekiah Ripley, the Greens Farms Parish voted to allow him the right to fence the grounds so as to pasture his sheep thereon. The burying place is specifically mentioned in the boundary description ins a March 12, 1749-50 Fairfield deed. The earliest stone is that of Abigail Andros Couch, dated September 14, 1730. The cemetery is still actively used ad is significant in that it contains the remains of many of the prominent early Westport families, especially those from the Greens Farms section. [3]