Sweet Auburn: The Magazine of the Friends of Mount Auburn The Art of Memory: Monuments Through Time | Page 22

Did you know ...?

By Steve Brown , Preservation Craftsperson and Katherine Robinson , Cemetery Development & Preservation Associate
• More than 60,000 monuments grace Mount Auburn ’ s grounds . Approximately 63 percent are made of granite , while marble , the stone of choice for almost a century , accounts for 32 percent . Limestone , brownstone , wood , and other materials account for the remaining 5 percent .
• The Preservation & Facilities Department includes four full-time staff and various part-time and seasonal employees , and several volunteers .
• Mount Auburn ’ s first monument was installed in 1832 to commemorate Hannah Adams , the first woman in the United States who worked as a professional writer . Her monument inscription erroneously states that she was the first person buried at Mount Auburn ; actually , it was a child in 1831 .
• In 2012 , a total of 147 monuments were added to the Cemetery , including a rock sculpture and a Buddhist stupa .
• Monuments at Mount Auburn can come in all shapes and sizes and forms , including benches , trees , kinetic sculptures , and fountains .
• Mount Auburn is world renowned for its birding and wildlife , but the most frequently asked about animals are those found on monuments ! There are eight sculptures of man ’ s best friend and one feline friend .
• The Shaw monument ( Lot 1286 Pine Avenue ) is of great national significance , as it includes a panel commemorating Robert Gould Shaw , the Civil War colonel who commanded the all-black 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment . Interestingly , the monument incorporates an ancient marble relief imported from Athens !
• Mount Auburn is home to one National Treasure : The Binney Monument ( Lots 1390 and 1391 Heath Path ). The sculpture is the only realized piece of funerary art by renowned artist Thomas Crawford . It was designated a National Treasure in 1999 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the White House Millennium Committee
• There are hundreds of cenotaphs – monuments commemorating persons buried elsewhere – in the Cemetery . Many honor the memories of notable people or organizations , such as Colonel Robert Gould Shaw , Margaret Fuller , the Naval Monument for the U . S . Exploring Expedition , and a monument erected for Benjamin Franklin by admirer Thomas Dowse .
• During 2012 , 146 monuments were repaired or re-set . 3,496 monuments were washed . 3,400 of the monuments washed were covered by Perpetual Care contracts . The remaining 96 monuments were washed through paid customer requests .
Contact us for further information about services such as the washing and resetting of monuments , as well as more intensive repairs and upkeep . Each arrangement is made on a case-by-case basis .
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