Plants

January

There is no better time to come and enjoy our impressive evergreens. Mount Auburn’s conifer collection is noted for its size and diversity. With more than 80 different taxa and more than 1,500 plants, it is comparable to the conifer collections at … Continue reading

February

Now is a great time for a second look at many of our deciduous trees and shrubs. Even without their more showy foliage and flowers, many of our plants have something to contribute to the winter landscape. From the the impressive size and shape of some trees … Continue reading

March

Early signs of spring appear throughout the landscape in March.  The cheerful yellow blossoms of witchhazel that appear early in the month and the beautiful carpets of scilla  that emerge by month’s end remind us that warmer days are soon on their way. … Continue reading

April

Mount Auburn is painted in shades of yellow, pink, white and lilac thanks to the daffodils, forsythia, magnolias, and redbuds now blooming.  For many, though, it is the April flowering of Mount Auburn’s 20+ varieites of ornamental cherries that truly signal spring’s arrival. … Continue reading

May

It is no wonder that Mount Auburn welcomes so many visitors each May.  Flowering dogwoods, crabapples, lilacs, and azaleas are just some of what is on display.  If you’ve never been to the Cemetery, now is the time to make … Continue reading

June

Though May might be the peak of spring bloom, there is still plenty of interest in June.  Rhododendrons, Mountain Laurel, and Kousa Dogwoods add plenty of late-spring color to the landscape. The annual and perennial plants planted in flower beds throughout … Continue reading

July

In July, make your way out to Willow Pond for a glimpse of our butterfly garden at its peak. As you walk at to the pond, you’ll notice a number of summer-blooming trees and shrubs adding seasonal interest to the … Continue reading

August

Late summer blooming ornamentals provide plenty of reasons to visit Mount Auburn, though perhaps the best reason to visit the Cemetery in August is to seek shade beheath the Cemetery’s dense canopy of shade trees.  Maples and oaks are among our shade … Continue reading

September

As the last of our summer-blooming plants make a showing in September, other plants begin showing the tell-tale signs of autumn’s approach.  Our wildflower meadow, located at  Washington Tower, is now at its peak as we bid farewell to one … Continue reading

October

By mid-October Mount Auburn’s landscape is awash in color.  As our many deciduous trees and shrubs begin to transform their foliage into jewel-tone shades of red, orange, yellow, and purple, other plants set out their fall fruits and nuts. Here are some … Continue reading

November

The diversity in Mount Auburn’s collection of trees ensures an prolonged foliage season each fall.  Even in November, there is still plenty of color in the landscape. From our noble oaks displaying autumn color to the fall-blooming witchhzel, there is plenty to see at the Cemetery.  Here are … Continue reading

December

As our deciduous plants drop their last leaves we welcome the winter season. Now is the time to explore Mount Auburn’s many plants displaying four season interest.  The diversity in our horticultural collections ensure that a visit to Mount Auburn at … Continue reading

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Under Mount Auburn’s Tree Canopy with Lynda V. Mapes

June 26, 2017

To visit Mount Auburn Cemetery was a very special opportunity. This is a place my husband and I returned to time and again while I was a Knight Fellow in Science Journalism at MIT, living just down the road on Memorial Drive, and wanting some peace and quiet. We would come up on late summer and autumn evenings, while the crickets were still singing their mesmerizing incantations and enjoy the long, slanting afternoon light.

I remember in particular one evening at the end of August, just before closing, the transfixing beauty of a full moon rising over this repository of community memory, the trees hold memory too, as does the land. (more…)

Roberto Mighty’s earth.sky

January 25, 2016

Official trailer for Roberto Mighty’s earth.sky – a new media project about the Cemetery that combines film, historic voices, layered design, and music.

In earth.sky, audiences experience a uniquely emotional, historical journey through breathtaking landscape cinematography, high-fidelity audio, music, and photography, while hearing the inspiring, sometimes heartbreaking and often uplifting words of individuals interred at Mount Auburn Cemetery from its inception to today. As Mighty describes it “earth.sky is not about death. It is about living people. People who once walked the earth as we now do. People who live on in the memories of others.”

Roberto Mighty's earth.sky

January 25, 2016

Official trailer for Roberto Mighty’s earth.sky – a new media project about the Cemetery that combines film, historic voices, layered design, and music.

In earth.sky, audiences experience a uniquely emotional, historical journey through breathtaking landscape cinematography, high-fidelity audio, music, and photography, while hearing the inspiring, sometimes heartbreaking and often uplifting words of individuals interred at Mount Auburn Cemetery from its inception to today. As Mighty describes it “earth.sky is not about death. It is about living people. People who once walked the earth as we now do. People who live on in the memories of others.”

Sweet Auburn, Fall 2013

August 7, 2014

Sweet Auburn, Fall 2013

In this issue…

President’s Corner

The Art of Memory

Photo Essay: Monument Symbolism

Stories Behind the Stones: What is Your Favorite Monument?

Preserving Mount Auburn

People & Happenings

Did You Know?

Bonus online content

Perkins Dog November 2007 jjj

The Art of Memory: Monuments Through Time

“Many of the pleasures of Mount Auburn are ephemeral, from the brightly-plumaged warblers and vibrant flowers of the spring to the spectacular foliage of the fall. But one feature remains constant throughout the year–the monuments erected in the landscape to honor the memory of those buried here. These monuments, ranging from inscribed flat memorials to tall and grand works of sculptural art, appear to be solid unmoving stone, but they have lives of their own, both in the stories they tell and in their presence in the landscape around them.”   – David Barnett, President, Mount Auburn Cemetery

Stories Behind the Stones: What is Your Favorite Monument?

Mount Auburn Receives a Federal Grant from IMLS

Mount Auburn Cemetery is delighted to announce that it has received a Museums for America Award from the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences (IMLS).  The award, in the amount of $92,000, will allow Mount Auburn to further implement the preservation of the Cemetery’s Significant Monument Collection. “This is a great honor for Mount Auburn,” Dave Barnett, Mount Auburn Cemetery President and CEO said of the award. “We are thrilled with this national recognition of Mount Auburn and its collections.”  Learn more

Read more about the significant monuments that will benefit from the IMLS grant.

Our New Greenhouse

On Saturday, April 6th Mount Auburn Cemetery celebrated the opening of its new Greenhouse along Grove Street in Watertown with an Open House. The new facility replaces Mount Auburn’s previous 41-year-old facility at the same location. Following a ribbon cutting ceremony at 1:30 PM, the public was invited to tour the new facility, hearing from Mount Auburn’s own horticultural staff about the building and Mount Auburn’s nationally-recognized horticulture program, known for its sustainable maintenance practices.  Learn more

The New Entry Way for Historic Story Chapel, completed in 2013

In 2009, the Friends of Mount Auburn was awarded a $132,000 matching grant by the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund (MCFF) to build a new entryway for Mount Auburn’s historic Story Chapel that would help make our Visitors Center more welcoming and accessible. The noted architect Willard T. Sears’ original 1896-1898 design of Story Chapel included an elaborate entrance “…through a large door, protected by a porte-cochere, which extends well over the driveway leading to the building from the main entrance to the cemetery.” (Cambridge Chronicle, 1898) Due to structural weakness and its inability to accommodate large hearses and most automobiles, the porte-cochere was removed on July 22, 1971.  Learn more

 

Mount Auburn’s Director of Preservation and Facilities Gus Fraser and Curator of Historical Collections Meg L. Winslow accepting the award at the VSA/NE 40th Annual Preservation Awards Ceremony from VSA/NE Peggy Clarke, June 2013, Copyright SusanWilsonPhoto.com

 

 

The Victorian Society of America/New England Chapter presented Mount Auburn with a Preservation Award for Recent Monument Conservation Projects and the New Story Chapel Entrance Way

 

 

The African American Heritage Trail

Among those now buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery are authors, journalists, jurists, lawyers, politicians, musicians, athletes, entrepreneurs, activists, and reformers that help to illustrate the African American experience in Boston and beyond during the 19th and 20th centuries. On February 11, 2013 the Friends of Mount Auburn launched an Interpretive Trail to celebrate the lives and legacies of seventeen individuals significant in telling this story. A number of people joined us in Story Chapel as we launched the new Trail – paying special tribute to one of the figures highlighted on the Trail: freedom-seeker, abolitionist, and author Harriet Jacobs, who was born on February 11, 1813.  Watch videos of the event!

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