New Cathedral Cemetery includes a combination of three old cemeteries. The first cemetery, St. Peter’s Kirkyard, opened in 1770 and was located at Cathedral and Saratoga Streets. In 1816, the Cathedral Cemetery was opened at Riggs and Fremont Avenues. At that time, everyone interred at St. Peter’s Kirkyard was relocated to the Cathedral Cemetery. Space once again ran out so in 1869 the Archdiocese of Baltimore purchased forty acres of land of what was outside the city line. Since then the city has moved to two miles past the cemetery. The land was the Bonnie Brae estate Owned by Capt. Charles McBlair. The ground was named the New Cathedral Cemetery. Seventeen years was spent relocating everyone from the Cathedral cemetery to the New Cathedral Cemetery. In 1936, St. Patrick’s Cemetery was moved from Orleans Street to a new section in New Cathedral appropriately named “St. Patrick.” The cemetery has since purchased an additional eighty-five acres assuring plenty of room for future generations.
The headstones and markers from all three old cemeteries, St. Peter’s Kirkyard, St. Patrick’s and Cathedral Cemetery, were installed at New Cathedral Cemetery. Many of these headstones are marble and can no longer be read. Marble does not stand up well to the urban environment. However, there is no denying the beauty and magnificence of the old headstones and statues.