The Harmony Society, led by George Rapp, arrived in the United States from Germany in 1804 and settled in Pennsylvania before purchasing 20,000 acres on the Wabash River and moving to Indiana in 1814. The Harmonists were religious Separatists from Germany who pursued Christian perfection through every aspect of their daily conduct.


The Harmonists established the cemetery at the beginning of their settlement in New Harmony as the resting place for over 200 members who died due to the harsh conditions of their new frontier life. No headstones mark the graves of these early settlers because the society believed in the equality of all members in both life and death. The red brick wall surrounding the cemetery, while not original, was built in 1874 of bricks rescued from the old Harmonist brick church. Also in the cemetery are several Native American mounds dating from the Middle Woodland Period, over two thousand years ago. These mounds were investigated by the Harmonists, and, during the Owen-Maclure period, by the artist and naturalist Charles Alexandre-Lesueur. This site is included in Historic New Harmony’s guided walking tour but is a free site open to visit on your own as well.

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