In 1836 the Laurel Hill Cemetery was built in Philadelphia overlooking the Schuylkill River. In the mid 1800's the cemetery became the resting place for many industrial leaders as well as many others in the city's upper class. It's monuments and amazing grave structures helped it to become one of the most popular spots for the rich and privileged in the Philadelphia area when choosing their final resting place.
The Laurel Hill cemetery quickly became a popular attraction within the city. As early as the 1840's tours were being given daily to both local's as well as tourists. It was reported that over 30,000 people visited the Laurel Hill Cemetery in 1848 alone. The Laurel Hill cemetery was certainly a marvel at the time as it was one of the first and one of the largest rural cemetery's in the country. Its miraculous tombs to honor those who had passed were also stunning to people at the time.
Statue's, beautiful architecture and fascinating mausoleum's built approximately 150 years ago still line this 74-acre piece of land today. The cemetery is located on Ridge Avenue and stretches several blocks with its midpoint being Lehigh Avenue. Laurel Hill seems to serve as a connecting spot on Ridge, as it joins the inner city at its start with the Philadelphia suburbs at its end.
Laurel Hill has expanded both outward and upward over the years. The cemetery has continued to grow and add to its legacy within the city by continuing to construct beautiful grave plots to honor its dead. In business now for over 170 years the Laurel Hill cemetery has certainly established itself as an historical landmark in Philadelphia. It is not only a marvelous sight when cruising down Ridge Avenue, but is also important to the surrounding community. The cemetery is obviously one of the largest businesses in the area, and it is hard to think about how this section of the city would be different without Laurel Hill. It is still maintained nicely by its dedicated staff and will continue to be a mainstay in the city for years to come, just as it has been in the past.
Group 26 Ridge Ave. N. 25th to Midvale-
Tom Kelly, Amber Sizemore and Holly Otterbein