I have loved visiting cemeteries since I was a child. It used to freak out my mom because she thought I was thinking about death too much but I was more curious about the lives of the people buried there. Through the years I have also been fascinated by the numerous head stones and grave markers. Please enjoy my fascination!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

How Goth...

This is one of my favorite designs at MVC - the gothic chapel "look". This particular one is on Millionaire's Row - not sure who is buried there though. On my next trip out there, I will have to do more research!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Like an Egyptian...

There are a few of these pyramids around MVC. When all of the pyramid discoveries in Egypt were being publicized way back when, these crypts became popular!

Sunday, June 3, 2007

A lot of what?

These are located at MVC - not in Millionaires Row but I am sure the families paid a bit to have these. I did have to take a close up of the names on the first structure - it made me giggle when I first read the name really fast. Just my weird mind at work! I think Althof & Bahls were bookbinders in San Francisco in the late 1800's.

Drama, Drama, Drama....

These are photos from the Ghirardelli plot at MVC in Oakland. Originally the family had their plot at the Catholic cemetery next door (St. Mary's) but the story goes that in 1879, Domingo Ghirardelli's (founder of Ghirardelli Chocolate) teenage granddaughter, Aurelia, was on her death bed and a priest was called to administer Last Rites. The priest refused to come. One explanation was that there was bad weather but another one says that the reason why he did not come was that he felt that Domingo was not giving enough financial support to the Church. In any case, the girl did not get her last rites before her death and the family was very upset.
To get back at the Church, Domingo went to MVC and had this white, marbled mausoleum made with the Masonic emblem over the door (a no-no for Catholics!). Sometime in 1890 when the work was complete on the structure, Domingo and his sons took a wagon over to St. Mary's in the middle of the night, removed the four bodies from the family plot there and had them reinterred in their new home. This plot is located on Millionaire's Row. Nothing like a little grave diggin' in the middle of the night to make things interesting....lol.

Hooker Memorial

The final resting place for wayward working girls...lol. Seriously, from what I remember the docent on the tour telling us, this was actually bought by the Hooker family and then sold back to MVC to be a final resting place for those less fortunate. From peeking through the gate, it looks like it holds niches for urns, but, I think it still stands empty.

The Golden Girl

This is another find at MVC (Mountain View Cemetery). Sara A. Plummer Lemmon helped make the California Poppy the official flower of California. It is a very simple plot. The cemetery did have poppies planted around it but the groundskeepers accidentally mowed the over - whoops!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

The Angel

This is one of my favorite grave markers - found at Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland, CA.