Tours and Events

Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation shares the art, history and natural resources of Cedar Hill with the public through creative programming designed to expand the cemetery’s visibility and to foster appreciation and support. Below is a listing of the Foundation’s upcoming tours and events. Please check back often as this listing is continuously updated!


Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation’s 2014 Tours & Events Calendar

The Proper Patient of 1900
Sunday, March 16, 2:00 pm
Admission: $15.00; CHCF, Connecticut Landmarks & Let’s Go Arts Members: $12.00

The long-suffering Myrtle Mills, a lady who has endured “every illness known to man,” offers her perspective on the myths and miracles of Victorian medicine. In this amusing, yet factual performance, Mrs. Mills as portrayed by Janet Parnes, will entertain you with her discussion of disease prevention, home remedies, doctor-prescribed treatments and more. Performance to be held at the Isham-Terry House on High Street in Hartford. Seating is limited. Please call (860) 956-3311 for reservations.

Dearly Departed: The Art of Victorian Mourning
Sunday, April 6, 2:00 pm
Admission: $15.00; CHCF, Connecticut Landmarks & Let’s Go Arts Members: $12.00

Lisa Lewis will lead an artifact-rich discussion of 19th-century mourning traditions, focusing on the two-year mourning period required of women in the Victorian era. Dressed in “widow weeds,” Ms. Lewis will share her extensive collection of mourning artifacts, including photographs, tear catchers, hair jewelry and other fashion accessories with the audience. Presentation to be held at the Isham-Terry House on High Street in Hartford. Seating is limited. Please call (860) 956-3311 for reservations.

Feathered Friends Walk
Saturday, May 10, 6:30 am
Free for All

Join Jay Kaplan from Roaring Brook Nature Center for his annual bird walk at Cedar Hill. Jay will lead visitors through Cedar Hill’s ornamental foreground in search of resident birds. For those who want to make a full morning of the feathered friends search, Jay will take guests for a walk through the woods of Cedar Mountain. Appropriate hiking shoes, water and binoculars are strongly recommended.

Evening Notables Tour
Wednesday, May 28, 6:00 pm
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free
Explore the lives and accomplishments of people who made significant contributions to Hartford and beyond in this introductory tour of Cedar Hill Cemetery. Learn about the discoverer of anesthesia and his tragic life, the woman behind the management of Colt’s Manufacturing, and the man who twice saved the country from bankruptcy.

Tree Walk — Connecticut Trails Day 2014
Saturday, June 7, 10:00 am
Free for All

Tree experts Ed Richardson and John Kehoe lead this 2-mile walk featuring Cedar Hill’s rare and notable trees. The tour, through the ornamental foreground and historic memorial sections, will highlight trees such as the beautiful European Weeping Beech, the unusual (for the Northeast) Umbrella Magnolia and the Hemlock that had Mr. Richardson “stumped” – for a little while anyway.

Butterfly Hunt
Saturday, June 21, 10:00 am
Free for All

Hunt for butterflies with Roy Zartarian and the Connecticut Butterfly Association. Cedar Hill supports a significant butterfly population, with nearly 20 species spotted here. Appropriate hiking shoes, long pants and bug repellent are recommended.

Birds of Prey Presentation
Saturday, June 28, 10:30 am
Admission: $8.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: $5.00; Children 12 & under: Free
A Place Called Hope, a raptor rehabilitation center, brings its Birds of Prey presentation to Cedar Hill. The program introduces audience members to several feathered friends (falcon, hawk & owl), discusses how the birds live in the wild, and shares tips for people to lessen the dangers for Connecticut’s wildlife. Please note: children must be accompanied by an adult.

From Home Fires to Camp Fires: Hartford Women & the Civil War
Saturday, July 12, 10:00 am
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free
Join Hartford Civil War researcher Mary Falvey for a telling of the capitol city’s experience during the “War of the Rebellion” from the viewpoint of its ladies. Stories include Harriet Foote Hawley’s nursing experience, Emily Beach Polk’s life as a Confederate officer’s wife and the work done on the home front to support the war effort.

Mark Twain’s Companions & Cohorts
Saturday, July 19, 10:00am
Admission: $5.00; CHCF, Mark Twain Museum & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free

While Samuel Clemens, a.k.a. Mark Twain, is laid to rest in Elmira, New York, many of his Hartford companions and cohorts are interred at Cedar Hill. Learn about Twain’s life and his many Nook Farm friends, neighbors and colleagues during this tour led by popular guide Steve Courtney. Featured residents will include Reverend Joseph Hopkins Twichell, Charles Dudley Warner and Isabella Beecher Hooker.

Colt Monument Tour
Saturday, July 19, 1:30 pm & 2:30 pm
Admission: Free

Cedar Hill is the final resting place of numerous politicians, industrialists, writers, actors, artists and educators including Samuel Colt. Married for only five years, Sam Colt died on January 10, 1862. He was originally interred on Armsmear’s grounds, but Elizabeth moved him and their four children to Cedar Hill in 1894 when their only child to survive to adulthood, Caldwell, died. Once you enter the cemetery gates, follow signs to meet at the Colt Monument for a ½ hour tour focusing on this significant monument and its importance to Cedar Hill.

Music Among the Memorials – Stacy Phillips & Paul Howard
Friday, July 25, 6:00 pm; Rain Date: Saturday, July 26, 6:00 pm
Free for All

Join us for an evening of music featuring Stacy Phillips & Paul Howard. Stacy is a Grammy award-winning fiddler and dobro player and Paul is a smooth, versatile vocalist and world-class rhythm guitarist. Together they play roots music of America as well as Hawaiian, klezmer, jazz and their unique brand of originals. Bring blankets, chairs and picnic dinners for an evening to remember.

Cedar Hill Sunset Tour
Thursday, August 14, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free

Join Foundation Director Beverly Lucas for a tour through the cemetery’s historic memorial grounds highlighting some of Cedar Hill’s most notable residents and monuments. Participants will enjoy watching the sun set over Cedar Mountain during the walk.

The Monuments of James Batterson
Saturday, August 23, 10:00 am
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free

James G. Batterson, co-owner of New England Granite Works in Hartford, played a key role in the establishment of Cedar Hill. He introduced the cemetery to Elizabeth Colt, who commissioned him to erect the first major monument at Cedar Hill. This tour, led by Foundation Director Beverly Lucas, will highlight the many monuments attributed to Batterson’s prolific company.

Cedar Hill’s 7th Annual Mystery Scavenger Hunt
Saturday, September 6, 10:00 am
Admission: $5.00 per person
Reservations Required – Call 860-956-3311

Help us solve Cedar Hill’s 150th anniversary mystery! Teams of up to four people each compete to find and follow clues throughout the memorial grounds. Once teams have collected all their clues, it’s time to solve the mystery. It’s a race to the finish, as prizes will be awarded to teams who solve the mystery the fastest. Reservations are required. Please call 860-956-3311 to reserve a spot for your team today.

Beyond the Gates
Saturday, September 13, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Free for All

Join us in celebrating Cedar Hill’s 150th anniversary with a day filled with Victorian-themed activities including costumed dramatizations and musical performances. Be entertained by America’s first magician, moved by the songs of the Civil War, and inspired by Victorian fashions. Meet Cedar Hill residents, take a horse and carriage ride and picnic on the grounds of the historic cemetery.

The Streets of Hartford 2
Saturday, September 27, 10:00 am
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free

Patrick Haggerty is back to lead this tour highlighting Cedar Hill residents for whom Hartford streets were named. Capitol city streets including Hoadley Place and Seymour and Taylor Streets will be part of this fascinating new tour of Cedar Hill which expands upon Patrick’s previous Hartford streets tour.  

What a Way to Go!
Saturday, October 4, 10:00 am
Admission: $5.00; CHCF & Let’s Go Arts Members: Free

Mayhem, murder and the hazards of everyday life in times gone by are the subjects of this tour led by Evelyn Bollert. Transportation with a mind of its own, constricting corsets, exploding boilers, odorless gases, melancholia, mysticism and more – Cedar Hill’s denizens tell us tales of the dangers of daily living in the late-19th and early-20th centuries.

Cedar Hill’s Haunted History Lantern Tour
Friday, October 24, 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Admission: $15.00
Reservations Required – Call 860-956-3311

The Friday before Halloween brings Cedar Hill’s Haunted History Lantern Tour! Join us for the only night the Cemetery is open to the public after dark. Led by lantern light, attendees will visit the final resting places of some of Cedar Hill’s notable and not-so-notable residents. Character actors will share their true-yet-darker-tales. To ensure your participation in this tour, reservations are required for specific time slots. Book your reservations early by calling 860-956-3311. Please note: This tour may NOT be suitable for children under 13. Wear appropriate walking shoes and bring a flashlight. Refreshments will be available for purchase.