What is the creation date of Mount Olivet Cemetery in Chicago?

Tourist Attractions

By Kristy Tolley

Mount Olivet Cemetery is one of the most prominent burial grounds in Chicago, Illinois. It is a Catholic cemetery that covers over 300 acres of land and is located at 2755 W. 111th St. in the city’s Beverly neighborhood. The cemetery is the final resting place of thousands of Catholic families and notable figures from Chicago’s history.

History of Chicago’s Cemeteries

Chicago’s first cemetery, the City Cemetery, was established in 1837, just a year after the city was incorporated. The cemetery was located on the north side of the Chicago River and covered 60 acres of land. However, due to overcrowding, pollution, and public health concerns, the City Cemetery was closed in 1866, and several new cemeteries were established in different parts of the city.

Founding of Mount Olivet Cemetery

Mount Olivet Cemetery was founded in 1888 by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago. The cemetery was established to serve the growing Catholic population in the city, many of whom were Irish and German immigrants. The land for the cemetery was purchased from the estate of Charles Todd, a wealthy Chicago businessman.

Early Years of Mount Olivet Cemetery

In its early years, Mount Olivet Cemetery was a modest burial ground with only a few hundred graves. The cemetery was managed by the Archdiocese, and burials were conducted by Catholic priests. The cemetery grew in popularity over the years, and by the early 1900s, it had become one of the largest Catholic cemeteries in the Midwest.

Expansion of Mount Olivet Cemetery

Over the years, Mount Olivet Cemetery has expanded several times to accommodate the growing demand for Catholic burials in Chicago. In the 1920s, a new section was added to the cemetery, and a new chapel was built. In the 1950s, the cemetery expanded again, adding new sections for veterans and members of religious communities. Today, the cemetery covers over 300 acres and has more than 150,000 interments.

Notable Figures Buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery

Mount Olivet Cemetery is the final resting place of many notable figures from Chicago’s history. These include politicians, athletes, musicians, and religious leaders. Some of the most famous people buried at the cemetery include Mayor Richard J. Daley, boxer Jack Johnson, and baseball player Hack Wilson.

Design and Architecture of Mount Olivet Cemetery

Mount Olivet Cemetery features a wide variety of architectural styles, including Gothic, Romanesque, and Art Deco. The cemetery’s buildings and monuments are made of a variety of materials, including marble, granite, and bronze. The cemetery also features several ponds and gardens, making it a peaceful and serene place for visitors.

Mount Olivet Cemetery Today

Today, Mount Olivet Cemetery is still owned and operated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago. The cemetery offers a wide range of burial options, including ground burials, mausoleums, and cremation. The cemetery also offers pre-planning services, grief support, and memorialization options.

Services and Facilities Offered by Mount Olivet Cemetery

Mount Olivet Cemetery offers a variety of services and facilities to visitors. These include a chapel for funeral services, a floral shop, and a genealogy research service. The cemetery also offers a mobile app that allows visitors to locate gravesites and receive driving directions.

Visiting Mount Olivet Cemetery

Mount Olivet Cemetery is open to visitors every day of the year, from 8 am to 5 pm. Visitors can enter the cemetery through one of two gates, located on 111th Street and Pulaski Road. The cemetery is wheelchair accessible, and visitors are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes for walking on the cemetery’s hilly terrain.

Trivia and Interesting Facts about Mount Olivet Cemetery

  • Mount Olivet Cemetery is the largest Catholic cemetery in the Chicago area.
  • The cemetery has been featured in several movies, including "The Blues Brothers" and "The Fugitive."
  • The cemetery was the site of a famous UFO sighting in 2004.
  • The cemetery is home to several rare bird species, including the great blue heron and the wood duck.
  • The cemetery offers a free app that allows visitors to locate gravesites and receive driving directions.

Conclusion

Mount Olivet Cemetery has been an important part of Chicago’s history and culture for over a century. It is a peaceful and serene place that offers comfort and solace to families who have lost loved ones. The cemetery’s rich history, beautiful architecture, and notable residents make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Chicago’s past and present.

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Kristy Tolley

Kristy Tolley, an accomplished editor at TravelAsker, boasts a rich background in travel content creation. Before TravelAsker, she led editorial efforts at Red Ventures Puerto Rico, shaping content for Platea English. Kristy's extensive two-decade career spans writing and editing travel topics, from destinations to road trips. Her passion for travel and storytelling inspire readers to embark on their own journeys.

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