The Virginia Room is the central repository for information on burial sites in Fairfax County. The Cemetery Survey has its genesis with Jane Kirkpatrick-Wall's 1977 gift of transcriptions of 100 Fairfax County cemeteries. Staff and volunteers continue to add to this valuable resource, which now records information on over 350 individual cemeteries.
The Fairfax County Public Library published full transcriptions of all of the family burial grounds in 1994 under the title Cemeteries of Fairfax County, Virginia, by Brian A. Conley.
The Virginia Room also maintains files on over 400 Fairfax County cemeteries ranging from private cemeteries to military burials to church cemeteries. Browse the Cemetery Files Index here.
The Fairfax Genealogical Society has undertaken the task of publishing abstracts of the family, church, and community cemeteries in Fairfax County (excluding only currently operating commercial cemeteries). This six-volume publication is titled Fairfax County, Virginia Gravestones.
More information about all six volumes, including prices and an order form, are available at the Fairfax Genealogical Society Cemetery Project.
1. If possible, determine the owner of the cemetery and ask for permission to visit. An owner can ask you to schedule a time to visit.
2. If it is not possible to determine or contact the owner, research ahead of time the access to the cemetery.
3. If one must cross private property to visit the cemetery, knock on the closest neighbor's doors to introduce yourself and explain your intentions.
4. If you can't connect with a neighbor, leave a note for them describing the date and time of your visit to the cemetery.
5. At all times be respectful of the cemetery.
Virginia Code of Law
§ 57-27.1. Access to cemeteries located on private property; cause of action for injunctive relief; applicability.
1. Owners of private property on which a cemetery or graves are located shall have a duty to allow ingress and egress to the cemetery or graves by (i) family members and descendants of deceased persons buried there; (ii) any cemetery plot owner; and (iii) any person engaging in genealogy research, who has given reasonable notice to the owner of record or to the occupant of the property or both. No landowner shall erect a wall, fence or other structure or device that prevents ingress and egress to the cemetery or grave, unless the wall, fence or other structure or device has a gate or other means by which ingress and egress can be accomplished by persons specified in this subsection. The landowner may designate the frequency of access, hours and duration of the access and the access route if no traditional access route is obviously visible by a view of the property. The landowner, in the absence of gross negligence or willful misconduct, shall be immune from liability in any civil suit, claim, action, or cause of action arising out of the access granted pursuant to this section.
2. The right of ingress and egress granted to persons specified in subsection A shall be reasonable and limited to the purposes of visiting graves, maintaining the gravesite or cemetery, or conducting genealogy research. The right of ingress and egress shall not be construed to provide a right to operate motor vehicles on the property for the purpose of accessing a cemetery or gravesite unless there is a road or adequate right-of-way that permits access by a motor vehicle and the owner has given written permission to use the road or right-of-way of necessity.