Graves at the Key West Historical Cemetery are built above ground, not under, because the soil, made of crushed coral, is too hard for digging. Resting here are people from an eclectic mix of races, religions and professions that echoes the island’s diverse heritage.
Inscriptions on graves tell much about Key West’s quirky characters too – like hypochondriac Betty Pearl Roberts, who had ‘I Told You I was Sick’ inscribed on her headstone, or the epitaph written by the wife of a notorious ladies man that reads ‘At least I know where he’s sleeping tonight.’
The 19-acre graveyard, which dates back to 1847, is home to some 100,000 departed souls, considerably more than the 25,000 residents currently living on the island. The cemetery’s main entrance is on the corner of Margaret and Angela Streets.