Piney Grove Cemetery
Piney Grove Cemetery is considered the last remaining historic landmark of Piney Grove, the former African-American community or settlement located in Buckhead that may date back as far as the mid-1820s. The church building for Piney Grove Missionary Baptist Church was demolished after it suffered storm damage in 1996, and the cemetery has been threatened by highways and high-end residential developments for a number of decades.
Piney Grove Cemetery, located on Canterbury Road, is a rare and intact example of an historic African-American cemetery, one of the earliest in Buckhead. Piney Grove Cemetery holds over 300 graves, some of which are believed to be slave burials. This historic site is a significant resource for Atlanta and has been determined eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. The irregular burial patterns, the variety of hewn and native gravestones, and the terraced landscaping are unique features that give Piney Grove Cemetery a distinct historic character and make it significant as a historic cultural landscape.
The cemetery is bordered by GA 400 on the west and mid-rise condominium development on the north and south. In 2006, the Buckhead Coalition fought to ensure permanent public access to the site. A very limited archaeological investigation was completed at that time. Although the site is currently overgrown, visual evidence of the cemetery’s historic significance survives. In July 2015 an Atlanta Journal-Constitution article was published about the cemetery’s condition and an adjacent residential development. Read “In the shadow of luxury, a cemetery for former slaves, in ruins” here.
Hiskey, Michelle. “Piney Grove left off map.” The Atlanta Journal Constitution, 24 February 1993.
Identified Sites File – Piney Grove Cemetery, Historic Preservation Division, Georgia Department of Natural Resources.
Pendered, David. “Cemetery, townhomes to co-exist.” The Atlanta Journal Constitution, 13 July 2006.
Buckhead Heritage Society
3180 Mathieson Drive, Suite 200
Atlanta, GA 30305