February 16 Pamela MacNaughtan

The Most Raunchy Cemetery In The USA

Most Raunchy Cemetery in USA

I’ve walked through many cemeteries in my day, in fact I’ve run through a couple of them. Old gravestones covered with moss, the engravings slowly disappearing over time, some have cracks, some are completely broken; and in Virginia City some are surrounded by wooden four-poster bed frames. Yes, this is definitely the most raunchy cemetery in the USA.

A bedpost marks a grave in Virginia City

A bedpost marks a grave in Virginia City

Visiting cemeteries may sound creepy, but you can learn some interesting things about a place by the people who are buried there. While most of us are not going to run to our local cemetery to see if we can find something interesting or weird, visiting a cemetery when you travel is highly recommended, especially if you’re driving through Nevada and happen to be close to Old Virginia City.

Old Virginia City

Old Virginia City

Virginia City was booming in the mid 19th century, thanks to rich silver and gold deposits; particularly the comstock lode, which was silver ore found beneath the eastern slope of Mount Davidson, part of the Virginia Range. The lodes of silver and gold brought unimaginable riches to Virginia City — which was estimated to be at around $300 million — and everyone seemed to benefit: miners, businessmen, prostitutes.

The abundance of riches usually led to an abundance of greed and naughtiness, and at one point Virginia City had roughly 21 brothels. That’s a lot of prostitutes, and probably a lot of seriously happy miners as well — some of whom probably died mid-performance.

Stinky and his donkey in Virginia City

Stinky and his donkey in Virginia City

Walking the old streets of Virginia City is rarely dull, especially when an old man (Stinky) dressed as a prospector is spotted walking slowly down the boardwalk and into a saloon. In these moments you get a sense of the city during the boom, but it isn’t until you visit the cemetery that you fully understand the relationship between the miners and the prostitutes.

19th century graves are generally matter-of-fact, which makes a cemetery visit highly entertaining — hell, if you have the time I highly suggest making a game of trying to find the most salacious graves. Mind you, that could prove to be quite challenging as many of the graves are quite worn.

While mining accidents and disease were prevalent in Virginia City, so was murder.

But that is not the reason why the cemetery in Virginia City is the most raunchy cemetery in the USA, the prostitute graves marked with crumbling wooden four-poster bed frames takes that honour.

A prostitute grave

A prostitute grave

There is something wonderful about wandering through a graveyard, attempting to read faded stone, and wooden, headstones, admiring intricate iron gates, and then stumbling upon a grave marked by an old wooden four-poster bedframe.

Since prostitutes make their living on their bed, it makes sense that the miners would mark the graves of their favourite hookers with the very bed they used for bumping and grinding, and Lord only knows what else.

The cemetery is believed to be one of the most haunted cemeteries in the USA, and over the years the cemetery has been looted and vandalized — which is one of the reasons why visits to the cemetery are only permitted during the day.

Bucketlist: Visit the Most Raunchy Cemetery in the USA, check!

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About the Author

Pamela MacNaughtan I'm a travel writer and photographer who specializes in bespoke travel experiences. I write about boutique, savvy and cultural travel. My writing has been featured in Outpost Magazine, Travel + Escape, and UP! Magazine.

Comment (1)

  1. Hi Pamela, I am glad to see that I am not the only traveller who likes to enjoy visiting cemeteries. And you are right, this one is really unusual. I have never heard of this practice before. Makes you wonder what else people have been up to back in the olden days! My favourite cemetery is probably the one in my city of Sydney, Waverley Cemetery, which is perched on a cliff overlooking the Pacific. Looking forward to reading more of your stories! Happy travels, Silke

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