As part of its Strategic Plan, Mount Auburn is currently revitalizing two of its most celebrated landmarks, Asa Gray Garden and Bigelow Chapel. Together these projects are part of a larger initiative to enhance the experience of arriving at and being within Mount Auburn, a place that has served to comfort the bereaved and inspire all who visit since its founding. Independently, each project presents an exciting new chapter in the Cemetery’s history.
Bigelow Chapel has been revitalized to meet the changing needs of families and the visiting public. A new entrance providing universal access graciously welcomes everyone arriving to attend a private family service or a public event. New multi-use gathering spaces provide numerous options for intimate memorial services in a non-denomination setting, informal receptions following services or burials, and a host of public events. A new state-of-the-art Crematory, replacing its previous facility, has prepared Mount Auburn to meet the growing public interest in cremation and positioned the Cemetery as a 21st-century leader within industry.
Join us for an Open House!
Both events are free and open to the public!
Saturday, December 1, 1 – 4 PM
Celebrate the reopening of Bigelow Chapel with a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at 1 PM followed by informal tours of the revitalized Chapel and Crematory. Throughout the afternoon, staff will be sharing interesting details from this ambitious project.
Saturday, December 15, 2 – 4 PM
Enjoy a concert with Mount Auburn’s former Composer-in-Residence Mary Bichner. Performing with the Planetary Quartet, Bichner will share her composition inspired by Bigelow Chapel’s newly restored Great Rose Window. After the hour-long concert, guests are invited to tour the Chapel and Crematory and speak with staff.
Mount Auburn’s landscape is composed of a diverse array of plants and trees that come into bloom at different times and in different seasons. See both a calendar and a list view of What’s in Bloom below:
What’s in Bloom: Week of November 5, 2018
Witch hazel, Hamamelis virginiana, Dell Path, Linden Path
Japanese anemone, Anemone hupehensis, Admin. bldg.
Jackman clematis, Clematis xjackmanii, Admin. bldg.
Wild bleeding heart, Dicentra exemia, Admin. bldg.
Ladies’-tresses, Spiranthes sp., Beech Ave.
Chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum sp., several locations
Tatarian aster, Aster tataricus, Asa Gray garden
Aster, Aster ‘Raydon’s Favorite’, Asa Gray garden
‘The Fairy’ rose, Rosa ‘The Fairy’, @ Sphinx
Rose, Rosa sp., several locations
‘Knockout’ rose, Rosa ’Radrazz’, Spelman Rd.
Snapdragon, Antirrhinum sp., Greenhouse garden
Lysianthus, Eustoma sp., Greenhouse garden
Cosmos, Cosmos bipinnatus, Greenhouse garden
Strawflower, Helichrysum bracteatum, Greenhouse garden
Mount Auburn Rap by Maria Lindberg
The squill is a thrill
Chionodoxa really rocks ya
Pansies and crocus bring it all into focus
Spice bush and lilacs delight the senses
Ivy twines around cast iron fences
Vinca hosta azealea silverbell
Escort the traveler on the way to the Dell
Orioles flit from spruce to beech
Hawks fly above with a warning screech
Turtles and bullfrogs and muskrats abound
Owls in their nests make nary a sound
Kingfishers herons and cormorants as well
Robins and phoebes have a story to tell
The Metasequoia of Auburn Lake
A perch for hawks and a migratory break
For warblers in May luring birders far and wide
Wonder and song are the gifts they provide
The American elm and the mighty oak
Guard the eternal sleep of the silent folk
Of Mount Auburn Cemetery
If you see a tree or plant in bloom that is not on this list, please leave a comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Volunteer Docent Robin Hazard Ray
The expression “babes in the woods” is used today to describe people who get in over their heads in situations they do not fully understand. But originally Babes in the Woods was a folktale, then a ballad, then a stock script for pantomimes (English theatricals done for the kiddies at Christmastime), as familiar to people of the nineteenth century as Sleeping Beauty or Cinderella. As we shall see, it had resonance for several notable people buried at or affiliated with Mount Auburn. (more…)
…From yellow leaves a blue jay calls
Grandmothers walk out in their shawls
And chipmunks run the old stone walls
Autumn within Mount Auburn presents an arboreal cornucopia of multiple colors. A sampling includes the reds of dogwood, maple, tupelo, Virginia sweetspire, oakleaf hydrangea, interplanted with the yellow of hickory, ginkgo, Korean mountain ash and larch among many others. One lesser known golden-yellow, which sometimes exhibit bright orange-bronze instead, is provided by the Golden larch, Pseudolarix amabilis. This native to China which grows 30-50 (100)-feet in height is one of four deciduous conifers that grow here, the others are bald cypress, dawn redwood and European larch. (more…)