The township of Moonta was surveyed and the first land sales took place in March 1863. About this time a reserve for burials was also surveyed. The Moonta Cemetery Trust was formed with the first meeting of the Trustees being held in the Prince of Wales Hotel, George Street, Moonta in May 1866.
The entrance into the front wall gates originally came from the east, towards the National Trust Miner's Cottage, Cemetery flat, Moonta Mines and East Moonta. There was also a road from the gates in a westerly direction towards the golf links. The present entrance from the Moonta to Maitland Road was not formed until 1905. In 1867, some 28 bodies which had been buried for about 3 years outside the fence, were reinterred inside the boundary.
In 1867 a plan of the cemetery was prepared by Mr G T Crutchett. The front wall was built in 1871, and the large iron gates made by J H Horwood & Co. were erected at that time. The side walls were added in 1872 and 1876 and eventually the whole area was enclosed. In 1875 a section on the eastern side of the cemetery was set aside for the Jewish community.
In 1896 the Trustees decided to erect a Cemetery Bell. This was of copper and the tower of angle iron, 25 feet high and made by J H Horwood & Co. of Adelaide. The bell was erected on the hill on the left hand side of the path going up. The bell of copper is 2 feet 6 inches in diameter and weighs 543lbs. and is fitted with a hinged clapper and the total cost including delivery and erection was 75 pounds.