The Family Graveyard

The Enslaved Community

Unfortunately, very little is known about the burial sites of the enslaved at Stagville. Site staff have yet to uncover any potential burial areas for enslaved people on state property. There is a possibilty enslaved remains could be found on lands presently owned by private individuals and businesses. This is, however, pure speculation.

The Bennehans

Just 100 yards southeast of the house lay the family graveyard. Within the graveyard are three burials: Richard, Mary, and Thomas Bennehan. Copies of the tomb inscriptions, which are difficult to read today, are available to guests at the site’s Welcome Center. Many wonder why there are so few graves in such a large area. It is likely that Richard Bennehan anticipated that many generations of his descendants would be buried there. Rebecca married and moved. Thomas never married and left no heirs.

The wall surrounding the area is made of dressed stone quarried on the Stagville land. The tapered design of the wall—wider at the base than at the top—is unusual. The entrance is adorned with the original iron gate. The tombs in the graveyard were ordered from Philadelphia. They are box-tombs, a style typical in England and preferred by the southern plantation elite.

The Camerons

Rebecca married Duncan Cameron and made her home at Fairntosh, where she and some her children are buried. Their son Paul Cameron, and some of his family, are buried in Hillsborough, NC at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church.