San Diego, CA
Graceland Chicago - The Cemetery Of Architects
Photograph - Photographs - Prints - Digital Images - Cards - Posters - Photo-calendars - Photo Art
© Christine Till
You don't think of cemeteries as beautiful places but in the heart of Chicago lies some of the most prime real estate and home to many of the most influential people of Chicago's past. This amazing and peaceful place is Graceland Cemetery, one of Chicago's oldest secular graveyards.
Graceland Cemetery in Chicago was founded in 1860 and developed over several decades by a series of landscape gardeners whose reputations today figure among the most important in the field. An exemplar of the rural cemetery type, Graceland was Chicago's answer to its eastern counterparts, Mount Auburn in Cambridge and Laurel Hill in Philadelphia. The stone monuments are a unique way to explore the history of the city through its makers. The famous names of Graceland reflect their importancein their own time, with their names still inscribed all over the city, but the world they built has largely vanished. Not just in terms of changing technology - but also by changes in society.
Today, with landscape-design ideas readily accessible through the plethora of consumer magazines, television shows, and Web sites, it is hard to appreciate that cemeteries were once major showcases of design talent. Yet in Chicago, as well as other major cities in America and Europe, cemeteries predated city parks as sites for pastoral strolls and quiet contemplation.
February 28th, 2013
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