Terlingua Cemetery is one of the most photographed graveyards in Texas. It’s located just south of the Terlingua ghost town, on a slope overlooking the dramatic Chisos Mountains. Back in the day (meaning the 1880s), Terlingua was a 2,000-person quicksilver mining town. Today its official population is just 58, although the “ghost town” part is well-commercialized for anyone coming or going from Big Bend National Park. Tourist cheesiness aside, it’s fun to hike around the crumbling old settlements, now occupied by families of jackrabbits (and probably a few rattlesnakes), and certainly worth a stroll around the cemetery. Many of the graves here belong to miners who died of mercury poisoning or in the merciless influenza epidemic of 1918-19. The plots are humbling in their simplicity: Piles of rocks and weathered wooden crosses mark the spot, but no names. On newer graves, you’ll see pieces of Mexican folk art, beads, rosaries, metal roosters, and beer bottles. It’s strange and beautiful, and yes, more than a little creepy. Just remember, it’s still an active burial ground. So, you know: R-E-S-P-E-C-T.
Terlingua, TX; no phone.