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Memphis National Cemetery is a United States National Cemetery located in the Nutbush neighborhood of the City of Memphis, in Shelby County, Tennessee. It encompasses 44.2 acres (17.9 ha), and as of the end of 2007, had 42,184 interments.[1]

Several Civil War battlefield cemeteries were transferred to the Memphis National Cemetery after the war.


Civil War[]

Memphis National Cemetery was originally established as Mississippi River National Cemetery when the Union Army forces took control of Memphis during the American Civil War. The cemetery served to inter veterans who died while in the many military hospitals in the delta region of the Mississippi River. After the war, several battlefield cemeteries were transferred to Memphis National Cemetery.[1]

In 1867, about 250 bodies of both Confederate and Union soldiers, some of whom were casualties of the Battle of Fort Pillow in Lauderdale County, were moved from a battlefield cemetery south of Fort Pillow to Memphis National Cemetery to be re-interred in a designated field.[2]

Steamboat Sultana disaster[]

On the night of April 26, 1865, the steamboat Sultana, overloaded with Union soldiers who had recently been liberated from Confederate POW camps, exploded due to a boiler rupture on the Mississippi River several miles north of Memphis. Many of the dead from that accident are buried in Memphis National Cemetery.

Notable monuments[]

Heroes of Illinois Monument.

  • The Illinois Monument, a granite and bronze sarcophagus by sculptor Leon Hermant, dedicated in 1929.[1]
  • The Minnesota Monument, a granite monument erected in 1916.[1]

Notable interments[]

See also[]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "Memphis National Cemetery". Department of Veterans Affairs. Retrieved 2008-09-21. 
  2. Cimprich, John (2005). Fort Pillow, a Civil War Massacre, and Public Memory. Baton Rouge, LA: LSU Press. p. 193. ISBN 0-8071-3110-5. 

External links[]

Coordinates: 35°10′24″N 89°56′15″W / 35.173422°N 89.937386°W / 35.173422; -89.937386

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