Dissidents Cemetery

The Cemetery of Dissidents is a cemetery located on the Panteón hill, in front of the Cemetery nº 1 and at one side of the old city jail (now a cultural center) in Valparaíso, Chile.

Cementerio de Disidentes
Cementerio Inglés de Valparaíso-Entrada Principal.JPG
Main entrance of the cemetery
Coordinates33°02′42″S 71°37′30″W / 33.045°S 71.625°W / -33.045; -71.625
Find a GraveCementerio de Disidentes

It was created in 1825 to hold the remains of the British and other Europeans residents, whose Protestant faith differed from the official state religion at the time; Roman Catholicism.[1][2]

In the early 19th century, immigrants to Valparaíso who were not Catholic were forbidden form being buried in Catholic cemeteries; as such, they were buried on Playa Ancha hill, or simply thrown into the sea. In 1823 British consul George Seymour, with the aid of mayor Robert Simpson, bought some land at one side of the city jail, to build a special cemetery for "dissidents" (i.e. those who did not adhere to the Catholic faith.)[3]

The cemetery is divided into eight sections and has nearly 800 graves. Most of the burials belong to immigrants of British, German and American origin.

Inside Cemetery No. 1, there is a monument dedicated to the American sailors who died during the 1814 Battle of Valparaiso, when the USS Essex was captured by the English ships Cherub and Phoebe.[4]

There is also a monument dedicated to Reverend David Trumbull, founder of the Presbyterian Church of the city.[3]

In 1883, religious discrimination in municipal cemeteries was abolished. Until that year, the Cemetery of Dissidents also housed non-Catholics who had died in other cities such as Santiago and La Serena.[5]

The cemetery suffered damages in the 1906[6] and 2010 earthquakes. Renovations in 2011 subsequently included a new memorial "Plaza of the immigrant".[5][7]


  1. ^ "CEMENTERIO DISIDENTES (In Spanish". Patrimonio. Valpariso Chile.com. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  2. ^ Similar cemeteries named the same occurred in Buenos Aires, in Argentina at the same time Montes-Bradley, Saul M (2003), Index to the records of the 1st Cemetery of Dissidents at Socorro Street and register no. 1 of the 2nd Cemetery of Dissidents at Victoria Street in Buenos Aires, 1821-1855, S.M. Montes-Bradley, retrieved 28 November 2014
  3. ^ a b "A place where death comes alive (in Spanish)". Cementerio de Disidentes. Valpariso Mercury (16 January 2002). Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  4. ^ Edmundson, William (2009). A History of the British Presence in Chile: From Bloody Mary to Charles Darwin and the Decline of British Influence. New York: Palgrave MacMillan. p. 108. ISBN 9780230114838.
  5. ^ a b Cisternas, Hernán. "Cementerio de Disidentes abrirá como memorial de los inmigrantes". El Mercurio (subscription required). Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  6. ^ "EARTHQUAKE AT VALPARAISO". The Capricornian. 32 (50). Queensland, Australia. 15 December 1906. p. 32. Retrieved 30 November 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  7. ^ Galarce, Jonathan. "End of first stage of renovation of Dissenters Cemetery (In Spanish)". Radio Bío-Bío (March 3, 2011). Retrieved 10 April 2013.

Coordinates: 33°2′42.94″S 71°37′30.14″W / 33.0452611°S 71.6250389°W / -33.0452611; -71.6250389