“Green-Wood Cemetery” Is a Fascinating Look at the Beauty and History Buried Beneath Brooklyn
Whether you enjoy collecting vintage photographs or love reading about history, Green-Wood Cemetery by Alexandra Kathryn Mosca is sure to hit the spot.
Mosca, who is an author and funeral director, uses vintage photographs to allow readers to tour the history of this picturesque cemetery throughout the years. Green-Wood has long been considered an integral part of New York’s cultural history and has a fascinating cast of characters buried beneath its 478 acres. Some of the people buried there are Dorothy Annan Harder and George Harder, two survivors of the R.M.S. Titanic disaster, Samuel Morse, F.A.O Schwartz, and Charles L. Tiffany.
As one of the city’s largest open green spaces, the cemetery used to be a hot spot for a wide variety of social outings, like picnics and cultural events. Through her pictorial evidence in the book, Mosca showcases the ever-changing funeral traditions of both New York City and Brooklyn as a whole.
Although it’s an easy read, Green-Wood is filled to the brim with the type of fun historical facts you’d see on Jeopardy. For example, ASPCA founder Henry Bergh passed away during the blizzard of 1888 and was supposed to be buried within Green-Wood. Thanks to the inclement weather, his body had to be placed in the receiving vault of St. Mark’s Church until the roadways were passable and Bergh could be buried within the cemetery. There’s also the tale of the Nevada silver mines developer John W. Mackay whose granite mausoleum cost about $300,000 and has not only stained glass windows and bronze doors but also an altar as well.
However, for those of you who do not live close enough to visit Green-Wood Cemetery, be sure to flick through the gallery and enjoy the beautiful architecture of some of the resting places of the cemetery’s most famous inhabitants!