Memorial Day Celebration at Union Cemetery

Posted on: May 28th, 2018 | By Cliff Keith | Holidays, Redwood City History | No Comments

Tradition for families to start their summer.

Memorial Day Celebration at Union Cemetery is celebrated annually. It is considered to be the end of the public school year. It’s viewed by many as the start of the summer season.  An educational activity on Memorial Day would be going to Union Cemetery. There you’ll be able to take part in this years celebration. All ages are welcome to this annual event.

Redwood City, CA:

Every Memorial Day at 10:00 AM, The Archives Committee of the Redwood City Public Library sponsors their annual Memorial Day celebrations. It is held at the Union Cemetery. Union Cemetery is located on Woodside Road by the El Camino Real over-pass. The Celebration honors the veterans who have fallen for their Country from all the past American Wars. It is the celebration for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, their lives, so we could enjoy our freedom.

Additionally, this celebration will have honor guests, dignitaries, and noted speakers. If you want, docents give guided tours of the cemetery. Tours are done usually before the Celebration begins.

Memorial Day Celebration at Union Cemetery
Union Cemetery

One of the highlight of Union Cemetery is the bronze statue of a Union Soldier. During the 1970’s this bronze Union Soldier statue was damaged by vandals. If not, for those few concerned members of Redwood City’s Archives Committee, I fear Redwood City may have lost their Historical treasure. Thank you to the men and women who took part in this rescue.

The Archives Committee

The Archives Committee annually sponsors the Memorial Day celebration. It’s held in Redwood City at the Union Cemetery. This celebration is always well attended, so be sure to arrive early or bring a portable chair for yourself.  In recent years bleacher seating have been installed. However, they fill up fast so arrive early if you can.

Also available to purchase is an award winning book entitled, Union Cemetery, by John G. Edmonds. John G. Edmonds a well know Historian in Redwood City. He has attended many Memorial Day celebration at Union Cemetery since he was a child. John’s book is best utilized as a self guided tour for Union Cemetery. It sells for $20.00. A good value for all it’s content and insight about the history of Union Cemetery.

It’s amazing how many people make it to this annual celebration. Many journey to Union Cemetery on Memorial Day. This includes present and past Redwood City residents. Many others travel from miles afar for this annual event. Wouldn’t you like to see and experience Union Cemetery yourself? Show up to enjoy and learn about Redwood City’s Union Cemetery, which is on the National Registrar for Historical Places.


As a side note, Union Cemetery was established in 1859. The going rate, at the time, to buy a plot was $10. This included membership in the Union Cemetery Association.  Annie M. Douglass was the first grave site in Union Cemetery. She was moved to Union Cemetery from the city grave site. The City grave site for many years was located on the Southeast corner where Sequoia High School sits today. (The corner of El Camino Real and James Avenue.)

Union Cemetery is on Woodside Road at El Camino Real.  Crippen and Flynn’s parking lot next door. As a gesture of community support, Crippen and Flynn allows free parking to those who are attending the celebration. Cost is FREE and it’s an experience of a life-time!

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Memorial Day Celebration at Union Cemetery
USA in Union Cemetery
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