At a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Village of Canandaigua held May 16th, 1884 immediate action was taken to establish a modern cemetery. A resolution was adopted calling a meeting of citizens to be held on the 22nd day of May, 1884. A committee was directed to proceed with the organization of the Cemetery Association. At a meeting held on June 9th, 1884, officers and trustees were elected.
It was considered of importance to locate this cemetery where it would have permanent seclusion and where the exercise of taste and expenditure of money would make it a heritage for all time.
On the 17th day of June, 1884, a tract of twenty-eight acres of land located on the west side of Pearl Street was purchased and the grounds were named "Woodlawn", and the cemetery became a reality. From time to time additional land has been acquired totaling nearly 75 acres.
A Superintendent's cottage and barn was authorized to be built at a meeting held July 20th, 1892. About this time, a receiving vault was constructed and later on a beautiful chapel, with an artistic modern cut stone bridge was erected. The barn and maintenance shop have been replaced by modern structures. The Superintendent's cottage has been renovated over the years and the historic chapel has remained untouched.
Woodlawn Cemetery is considered to be one of the most beautiful cemeteries in western New York, and perhaps beyond. The Canandaigua Cemetery Association has been most fortunate in the selection of Trustees who have exercised excellent judgement in carrying on, and making additions and improvements which have been in harmony with the original intent of Woodlawn Cemetery.