Baynard Mausoleum

The Baynard Mausoleum is the oldest remaining structure on Hilton Head Island. The cemetery and mausoleum are all that remain of the Zion Chapel of Ease built around 1786 as part of the Episcopal St, Luke’s Parish, to accommodate islanders unable to make the boat trip to the main church in Bluffton. Among the cemetery’s 47 marked graves are four Revolutionary War veterans, the remaining graves belonging to wealthy indigo and cotton plantation families. The site formerly contained a wooden chapel but historians are unsure about exactly where the 40×30 foot building stood. Services were held there regularly until the island was invaded by Union troops in 1861. When a church rector returned in 1867, he reported that Zion Chapel had disappeared. Now, the mausoleum, whose white marble doors were removed by looters during the Civil War, is the largest intact structure in the 2.8 acre cemetery.

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