graveyards.com trip report - 3 September 2005
- Yesterday I explored DuPage county (west of Chicago).
Cass Cemetery - Darien - #493
A small but impressive graveyard with several obelisks. It is
approximately triangular, and lies along the frontage road that
parallels I-55. Due to the expressway, many roads in the area
have discontinuities, and it's difficult to find the cemetery
without a map; after my approach from the southeast failed I
arrived there by travelling north to 75th street, then south.
St. John's Cemetery - Darien - #494
This cemetery shares its fence with a state nature preserve. The
east side of the enclosure is the nature preserve; filled with tall
weeds and heavily posted with "no trespassing" signs. However,
on the south edge there's another gate leading to the cemetery,
entry to which is apparently not forbidden. The cemetery is moderately
well-kept; the grass is cut, but there are some damaged monuments.
There is no sign.
St. Barnard's Cemetery - Woodridge - #495
Saint Barnard's is a small graveyard masquerading as a large one. There
are only about thirty stones, but they're spread out over a very large
area, a triangular lot next to a park. There is no sign or fence.
Babcock's Grove Cemetery
I had formerly identified this as "Washington Street Cemetery", as
it's listed this way in the AMC atlas, but today discovered that
the USGS listing has Babcock's Grove at nearly the same coordinates.
Revisiting the site I found no indication of its proper name.
St. Mary's Cemetery - Lombard - #496
This is a small, run-down graveyard alongside a busy divided highway.
There is an in-ground mausoleum, with the top three feet or so above
ground, painted white, with weeds growing from its cracked and uneven
concrete roof. Its entrance faces away from the road - and it was open;
there is no door. Stepping down into the mausoleum I found it badly
vandalized, with graffiti on every surface. On one side there is a
structure of concrete and brick, about the right size to be two
sarcophagi; but it is more likely merely a platform on which the
coffins originally sat. Vandals have broken into the side of this
platform, carving out a tunnel about eighteen inches square at the
surface, and twelve inches in depth; but the far end of the tunnel
does not reach open space, it reveals only more brick and concrete.
There is no sign.
St. Peter's Cemetery - Elmhurst - #497
St. Mary's Cemetery - Elmhurst - #498
These are two adjacent cemeteries next to Elmhurst College. USGS
lists a "College Cemetery" in place of St. Peter's, but I find no
evidence of that name. The Protestant and Catholic cemeteries here
share a single fenced enclosure but have separate entrance gates.
One monument at St. Mary's is a pedestal, with a bronze plaque near
the top that says "Kindly Do Not Touch This Statue"; the statue,
however, is missing. There is much vandalism here, with several
pedestal tombs knocked over.
Glos Cemetery - Elmhurst - #499
This very small graveyard is in a high-class residential neighborhood
in Elmhurst, and its area is smaller than that of many of the houses
there. The gate was locked, and private property surrounds it on
three sides, so I was only able to view it from one side. There are
very few monuments: a row of six broken headstones along the fence;
a large granite monument (facing away from the road, so no inscription
was visible), and two other small markers. There is an in-ground
mausoleum, with only the top few feet visible (very similar to that
at St. Mary's, above), but the entrance to it was not visible.
Zion Ev. Lutheran Cemetery - Churchville/Bensenville - #500
With the light failing, I tried to explore two more graveyards
before setting out for home. I was very pleasantly surprised
at the appearance of Zion Cemetery. The graveyard was organized
in such a way that all of the tall monuments are clustered together;
shorter monuments are all off to one side. This gives the appearance
of a dense forest of marble and granite; in that section, every
monument is 6' or taller, topped with a cross or urn. The effect
is stunning. Unfortunately, I arrived late in the day, when the
light was weak; my photos are therefore underexposed. I plan to soon
return there at an earlier hour.
This is the five hundredth graveyard that I have explored.
Churchville Cemetery - Churchville/Bensenville - #501
Churchville is across the street from Zion. The churchlike building
next to it is a historic school. Woods border the cemetery on the
back side. It has an entrance arch and a few larger monuments.
By this time it was too dark to get good photos, and I spent only
a few minutes there; I'll return later to explore it in better light.
"The day will come when our silence will be more powerful than the
voices you are throttling today." -- August Spies, 1887
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I live in Buffalo Grove and would love to visit the Long Grove church cemetary. Where is it exactly? Thanks so much. I spent the weekend in Quincy touring a cemetary that my mother-in-law helped publish a historical brochure on. Thanks!