Welcome to The Forgotten South!
My name is Kelly and I am the Photographer, Researcher, and Cemetery Advocate behind The Forgotten South.
The Forgotten South began in 2010 as the hobby photography project of a history nerd. Since then, I have traveled countless miles of rural roads, looking for the places time forgot. Then I dig in to research their stories to share with y’all. I collect data to unearth as much history as possible about each property that I find, through property records, census data, birth & death certificates, obituaries, old newspapers, and other resources.
I am typically drawn to the more-forgotten places with stories we haven’t heard before. The sites I focus on are often abandoned, while others are just lesser known. Most of these places represent the hard-working families who left their farms to crumble for one reason or another. These places don’t have plaques, memorials, or even records that they ever stood. I aim to fix that.
I wish I could save all these places, but since I can’t, at the least, I can preserve them through stories and photographs that I get to share with you. Whenever possible, I do what I can to advocate on the behalf of places that have a chance to be saved.
I am enthusiastic about documenting and sharing the stories from every corner of the Old South and I’m happy to have you along for the journey. I hope you will follow along as I add more stories of old places to the blog!
In 2020, the project expanded to include documentation and clean-up of abandoned cemeteries as well.
It is an honor to me to be able to preserve historic burial sites that have been neglected for whatever reason. I work with family descendants and current property owners to gain permission to visit these sites to complete a proper photographic survey and measurements. Then we work together to decide what the future might look like for the site.
In many cases, we have to complete extensive deed research into records from the 1800s to determine ownership before we can start the cleanup process. Finally, a future site plan is developed to outline the care of the cemetery moving forward. If you know of a cemetery in the South that needs some TLC, you can submit it here.