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Graceland Cemetery, Chicago

(160+ reviews on the web)
Cemetery Tourist Spot
Graceland Cemetery is a large Victorian era cemetery located in the north side community area of Uptown, in the city of Chicago, Illinois, USA. Established in 1860, its main entrance is at the intersection of Clark Street and Irving Park Road. The Sheridan stop on the Red Line is the nearest CTA "L" station.History and geographyIn the 19th century, a train to the north suburbs occupied the eastern edge of the cemetery where the "L" now rides. The line was also used to carry mourners to funerals, in specially rented funeral cars, requiring an entry on the east wall, now closed. At that point, the cemetery would have been well outside the city limits of Chicago. After the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, Lincoln Park which had been the city's cemetery, was deconsecrated and some of the bodies moved here. The edge of the pond around Daniel Burnham's burial island was once lined with broken headstones and coping transported from Lincoln Park. Lincoln Park then became a recreational area, with a single mausoleum remaining, the "Couch tomb", containing the remains of Ira Couch. The Couch Tomb is probably the oldest extant structure in the City, everything else having been destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire.The cemetery is typical of those that reflect Queen Victoria's reconception of the early 19th century "graveyard". Instead of poorly maintained headstones, and bodies buried on top of each other, on an ungenerous parcel of land; the cemetery became a pastoral landscaped park dotted with memorial markers, with room left over for picnics, a common usage of cemeteries. The landscape architecture for Graceland was designed by Ossian Cole Simonds.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • In bygone days, people went for walks in cemeteries. Graceland is a cemetery that is the final resting place of famous Chicagoans. It is a beautiful place to explore Chicago's history. There is a map ...  more »
  • I visit here regularly to get away from the noise and chaos of the city. It is a great place for walkers and many use the cemetery as a walking trail. For Taphophiles, this cemetery ranks with Highgat...  more »
  • Graceland offers insight to Chicago's unique history through the lives and deaths of local entrepreneurs, celebrities and leaders. Tours such as the Chicago Architecture Foundation tour point out the ...  more »
Google
  • It's a cemetery so it's an understandably quiet place. You can walk in free of charge during operating hours. Come here on a beautiful sunny day and enjoy the majestic monuments of the city's founding fathers. There's lots of grand, over the top, gilded age funerary monuments here. It certainly helps to know some Chicago history. Otherwise you may walk right by the relatively humble gravestones for Louis Sullivan and Allan Pinkerton. Graceland is definitely worth exploring.
  • Wow. The grand-daddy of Chicagoland cemeteries. See a major street in Chicago? The namesake is probably buried here. There are monuments and mausoleums that cost more than most people make in a lifetime. Freud would have a ball here.
  • Beautiful place. Great for a photo walk.
  • AMAZING historical cemetery! Especially if you appreciate architecture at all! Get the guide book from the Chicago Architectural Foundation before you go.
  • Did tour with Chicago Architecture Foundation. What a serene spot. Well worth a tour!