Evergreen Cemetery became Brighton's primary burial space after the 1764 Old Burial Ground on Market Street ran out of available space. The Selectmen of Brighton purchased a portion of Aspinwall Woods, a beautiful wooded tract of slightly less than 14 acres on South Street in 1848 from the heirs of William Aspinwall.
Evergreen Cemetery was established during the early stages of the Rural Cemetery Movement. Its design struggled to integrate characteristics of a rural cemetery style such as winding roads and formal plantings with the engineering requirements of a naturally rocky and wooded landscape. Shortly after Evergreen Cemetery was acquired by the City of Boston with the annexation of Brighton in 1873, it was placed under the administration of the Board of Health along with Boston's older burial grounds. The attention of the Board of Health was focused on the problems of the urban cemeteries under its control.
Few funds were expended on Evergreen and it languished until the early 1890s when a new gateway was erected and a new section of lots was developed. After the control of Evergreen was transferred to the Cemetery Departments in 1897, more funding was available and a number of improvements were made. Evergreen serves as the final resting place for prominent Brighton families and veterans of various wars.