How to Discover the Rich History of the Beaufort National Cemetery

One of our favorite things about Beaufort is the story of its incredible past. As the second oldest city in the state, Beaufort has been the site for impactful Civil War activity, a permanent U.S. Marine Corps recruiting station, and more. A unique site to visit is the Beaufort National Cemetery. The honored burial ground is the resting place for fallen soldiers from every American conflict from the Spanish American War to the Gulf War! Learn more about the historically significant site below.

While staying at our Inn, you’ll have the chance to explore a variety of museums, plantation homes, and historic sites, like the Beaufort National Cemetery, that showcase the intricate past of our South Carolina gem. Access our free Vacation Guide to discover our top recommendations for the area’s best activities and attractions!

History of the Beaufort National Cemetery

In 1861, a fleet of 71 Union Ships attacked the two forts located along the Beaufort River and took control of the area. Two years later, the Union Army established the Beaufort National Cemetery, one of six national cemeteries established in 1863, as a burial site for Union troops and sailors who died during the Civil War.

Soldiers buried in Hilton Head, Charleston, and as far as Florida were relocated to the new cemetery in Beaufort. The relocation continued and approximately 2,800 Union soldiers buried in Georgia along with 100 Confederate soldiers were moved to the burial site. In 1987, the remains of 19 soldiers from the African American Massachusetts 54th Infantry were transferred to Beaufort’s memorial cemetery with full military honors.

As the final resting place for more than 18,500 interments, the 33-acre site was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997. The quiet site remains a distinguished local attraction today where visitors come to get a glimpse into the area’s past and pay respect to our fallen heroes.

Visiting the Beaufort National Cemetery

With its magnificent oak trees and acres of grass dotted with white headstones, the Beaufort National Cemetery is a quiet destination that holds a rich history. The cemetery is located in the center of downtown Beaufort and is open daily for visits from 8:00 a.m. until sunset. If you’re interested in American history, the Beaufort National Cemetery is a fascinating place to visit. For more information, including a map and directions, visit this page.

The cemetery saw its largest number of visitors during the annual Wreaths Across America event. Hundreds of volunteers joined together to place Christmas wreaths at each gravesite, honoring and remembering Beaufort’s heroes. The special day was part of the nationwide Wreaths Across America event that takes place at all 230 National Cemeteries across the country.

Stay at the Best Inn in Beaufort

While you’re in Beaufort, let the Cuthbert House Inn be your home-away-from-home.Whether you are visiting the Beaufort National Cemetery or other historic sites in the area, our Inn is close to all the best attractions. Start planning your stay by choosing your favorite guest room. You’ll love our luxurious amenities and delicious, homemade breakfast we serve every morning.

Check availability of all our accommodations now and book your stay at the Cuthbert House Inn today!