Perhaps native New Yorkers or visitors don’t immediately think of NYC’s cemeteries as must see destinations but they are the most concentrated record not only of past New Yorkers but also the winds of social change. Every shift in architectural and cultural likes and dislikes is mirrored in the many memorials in these cemeteries. Two of them Green-Wood and Woodlawn owed their layout and landscaping approach to the rural cemetary movement which emphasized a more countrified and expansive approach to cemeteries and as a result both are park like in their serenity and beauty. And of course there is the fascination of seeing the final resting place of so many famous New Yorkers.
GREEN-WOOD CEMETERY BROOKLYN
The cemetery of choice for well to do New Yorkers for a long time, it is very beautiful and was once used a great deal as the place to have a picnic. There weren’t public parks then in NYC and why not enjoy the beauty of it during weekends. It has some stunning large monuments and an extraordinary entrance. You can purchase small books which direct you on various walks past the final resting places of various prominenet citizens. Two of its famous residents are Theodore Roosevelt and Lola Montez.
WOODLAWN CEMETERY THE BRONX
Also very beautiful it has many more large and elaborate Mausoleums than Green-Wood and has a memorial to the victims of the Titanic as well as a full complement of famed New Yorkers two of whom are Miles Davis and Duke Ellington who reside across from each other, something they undoubtedly enjoy. You can get maps when you go that show you where various famous people are burtied. You get a very good idea of the cemetery and it’s attractions from the video.
CALVARY CEMETERY QUEENS
This cemetaery is quite different in character to the two above. It has over 3 million internments and is the largest cemetary in the whole of the nation. It is a Roman Catholic cemetery and though it has a roll call of many fine and distinguished residentss it also has the biggest concentration of deceased mobsters in NYC. Despite the seried ranks of tombstones it’s setting is superb and from Sections 7 and 48 there is a fine view back to Manhattan. It is extraordinarily difficult to find specific graves, something else which marks it out from its other two large cemeteries, but it deserves a visit both for it’s setting and for its significance and you never know which famous mobster’s tomb you’ll stumble across