Walter “Furry” Lewis (6 March 1893 – 14 September 1981) is buried in Hollywood Cemetery, 2012 Hernando Road, Memphis, Tennessee.

The GPS location of Furry Lewis’ grave is: N 35° 05.146′ W 90° 01.345′

Furry Lewis gravestones, Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee
The two Furry Lewis gravestones, Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee

Furry Lewis’ grave is marked by two gravestones, an original flat marker and a newer headstone. Furry Lewis’ original gravestone is shown in the photo below. The inscription reads:

“Walter “Furry” Lewis

Blues Man

Mar. 8, 1893 – Sept. 14, 1981″

Original grave marker on "Furry" Lewis' grave in Hollywood Cemetery
Original grave marker on “Furry” Lewis’ grave in Hollywood Cemetery

The second headstone on Furry Lewis’ grave is a vertical marker which was placed later than the original flat gravestone. The inscription on the second gravestone reads:

“Walter “Furry” Lewis

Mar. 6, 1893

Sept. 14, 1981

“When I Lay My Burden Down””

Headstone on Walter "Furry" Lewis grave in Hollywood Cemetery
Headstone on Walter “Furry” Lewis grave in Hollywood Cemetery

The photo below shows both gravestones on Furry Lewis’ grave.

Furry Lewis gravestones, Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee
The two Furry Lewis gravestones, Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee

Perhaps it is appropriate to quote the lyric from Furry Lewis’ 1962 recording of “Furry Lewis’s Careless Love“:

“Only one kind favor I ask of you,

One kind favor I ask of you,

There is one kind favor I ask of you,

Just see that my grave kept clean.

Lord, my heart stopped beating, my hand got cold,

Heart stopped beating, my hand got cold,

When my heart stopped beating, my hand got cold,

It won’t be long before I’m in a shady grove,

Dig my grave with a silver spade,

Dig my grave with a silver spade,

Please, dig my grave with a…..,

Just let old Furry down with a golden chain,

Give it length in my Jesus’ name,

Give it length in my Jesus’ name,

Give it length, please, in my…….,

Let me down with a golden chain,

Have you ever heard a coffin sound?

Have you ever heard a coffin sound?

Have you ever heard a coffin sound?

You know old Furry’s in the ground.

Hearses come out walking slow,

Hearses come out walking slow,

When the hearses come out walking slow,

You know Furry is no more.

Just dig my grave with a silver spade,

Dig my grave with a silver spade,

Just dig my grave with a…….,

Then let me down with a golden chain.

Let me down with a golden chain.

Time done been, won’t be no more,

Time done been, won’t be no more,

Time has done been, won’t be no more,

Time done and won’t be no more.

Fare well, be very well,

Fare well, baby, very well,

Fare well, baby, won’t you fare well.

I’m goin’ sing this verse and don’t sing no more,

Sing this verse and don’t sing no more

I’m goin’ sing this verse and I ain’t goin’ sing no more.

When I’m dead don’t grieve after me,

When I’m dead don’t grieve after me,

When I’m dead don’t grieve after me,

I just want my just desserts and my liberty…….”

Here are two videos of Furry Lewis performing, circa 1964:

 

Hollywood Cemetery can be a bit difficult to see when driving on Hernando Road. The cemetery entrance driveway is marked only by a small mailbox (see photo below) The third photo below shows the Hollywood Cemetery entrance driveway and the cemetery gate. Drive straight through this gate and follow the road in the center photograph to the third left turn. Just after the left turn, Furry Lewis’ grave is at the side of the road on the left hand side. The photo at right shows the cemetery office. It is boarded up and appears unattended. For a listing of Hollywood Cemetery interments, click here.

Bluesman Frank Stokes (1888-1955) is also buried in Hollywood Cemetery.
The entrance to Hollywood Cemetery is marked by this mailbox:

Hollywood Cemetery, view from Hernando Road
Hollywood Cemetery, view from Hernando Road

When you turn into the Hollywood Cemetery driveway, the cemetery office is on the left.

Hollywood Cemetery office
Hollywood Cemetery office

Here’s the entrance gate and driveway.

Entrance to Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee
Entrance to Hollywood Cemetery, Memphis, Tennessee

The GPS location of Furry Lewis’ grave is: N 35° 05.146′ W 90° 01.345′

We will post more information on Furry Lewis at a later date.

2 November 2015