Cemetery Hidden in the Illinois Woods Abandoned for 120 Years

Imagine stumbling upon a forgotten family cemetery deep within the woods. This is precisely what occurred to a group of adventurers who uncovered a concealed graveyard adjacent to a pond in Illinois. This cemetery, dating back to the late 1800s, has remained deserted and engulfed by nature for over a century.


The explorers, operating under the name Decaying Midwest, are a YouTube channel dedicated to documenting abandoned and decaying sites in the Midwest. While they kept the exact location of the cemetery undisclosed, they shared a video of their exploration on their channel.

In the footage, they traverse through the woods and stumble upon a small clearing adorned with several headstones and a metal fence. Though most of the headstones are illegible, a few display death dates ranging from 1874 to 1902. The explorers hypothesize that the cemetery was originally a private family plot, forgotten over time and reclaimed by nature.

Historical Ambiguity

Little is known about the history of the cemetery or the individuals interred there. According to web search results, the cemetery overlooks a serene lake, where sunlight filters through the trees onto the gravestones.

It appears the family sought to establish a tranquil resting place for their loved ones. However, for reasons unknown, the cemetery was abandoned, left to decay for at least 120 years. Whether the family relocated, the land changed hands, or neglect took its toll, remains a mystery.

Demonstrating Respect

The explorers approached the cemetery with utmost respect, adhering to the code of urbex (urban exploration) by leaving the site untouched. They refrained from theft, vandalism, or defacement, capturing only photographs and leaving only footprints.

They also cautioned viewers against trespassing, emphasizing the need for permission due to potential dangers and legal implications. Recognizing the cemetery as a family’s intended final resting place, the explorers urged others to honor and respect its historical significance.

Final Thoughts

The hidden cemetery within the Illinois woods stands as a captivating and enigmatic discovery. It serves as a poignant reminder of the past, commemorating the lives that once thrived and concluded there.

Additionally, it symbolizes the enduring influence of nature and the relentless march of time. While the cemetery may be abandoned, its memory persists, forever embedded in the history and landscape of Illinois.


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