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44. The Mt. Iser Cemetery

 NOTICE: THIS SITE IS ON PRIVATE PROPERTY:
              If you wish to visit the cemetery,  please inquire at the Visitor Center about access.

Mt. Iser Cemetery has been claimed to be the only privately owned Confederate burial ground located within Federal entrenchments. Whether or not it is the only one, it is certainly an unusual and dramatic situation for the cemetery.

After the Battle of Rich Mountain, General George B. McClellan's troops occupied Beverly. The Union troops dug about two and one-half miles of trenches on the three hills overlooking Beverly and used this ground for a camp ground and as defensive positions throughout the war.
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mtisner4.jpg (23667 bytes) In 1870, Joseph Hart requested that the Confederate soldiers buried on his farm on Rich Mountain be moved to a permanent burial site. Calvin Collett provided the ground on the knoll of Mt. Iser, encircled by the wartime fortifications, and contributions from Beverly residents made it possible to move the bodies from various burial sites on Rich Mountain and from other sites near Beverly. There are at least 69 Confederate soldiers and one civilian buried at this cemetery, all of whom died either at Rich Mountain or in other actions near Beverly.

In 1908, the Randolph Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy erected a stone obelisk commemorative spire, accompanied by an impressive dedication ceremony attended by many Civil War veterans.

When the local UDC chapter disbanded, they donated the cemetery to The Randolph County Historical Society for safekeeping. The RCHS, in partnership with other Beverly organizations, is working to clean up the property and improve access for visitors.

The cemetery can now only be reached after a strenuous and circuitous walk over private property to the monument site.

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The Mt. Isner cemetery around 1900. (below)

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