Greenwood Cemetery (Knights of Pythias Cemetery)

Greenwood Cemetery open in 1869 after being converted from a farm, and covers 43 acres. It is on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places. Benjamin Rush (a signer of the Declaration of Independence) lived on the farm in the late 1700s. Over the years, Greenwood’s fortunes declined. The cemetery became a target for vandalism and many headstones were toppled and broken. Maintenance became sporadic and vegetation began to consume the cemetery. Only the front third of the cemetery is cleared enough to walk through unimpeded. The rear of the cemetery has reverted to forest with trees springing up through the middle of graves. It is not an unusual sight to see a headstone pinioned between two trees. The Knights of Pythias, upset over conditions at Greenwood, tried unsuccessfully to have their name removed from the cemetery.