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HOLLYWOOD FOREVER CEMETERY

“The cemetery is an open space among the ruins, covered in winter with violets and daisies. It might make one in love with death, to think that one should be buried in so sweet a place.”

― Percy Bysshe Shelley, Adonais
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
One of the oldest cemeteries in Los Angeles, Hollywood Forever Cemetery harkens to the old tradition of resting places for the dead.  Unlike the sterile field of flat headstones easily mown over at some cemeteries, Hollywood Forever is filled with standing headstones, temples and monuments as unique as those whom they commemorate.  Once a favored cemetery for the elite of Hollywood royalty, it fell in to disrepair.  Now it is making a comeback.  On the National Register of Historic Places, you can find cemetery movie screenings, Day of the Dead commemorations, concerts, and tours, which is what brought me to the cemetery.  The Art Deco Society of Los Angeles was doing their annual tour, in its 30th year.  I had wanted to attend for awhile, but calendars had never worked out.  This time I jumped on the opportunity to hear the dirt, as they say, on some of the icons of the history of Hollywood.
While hearing the stories was interesting, what was most interesting were the monuments themselves – remarkable in their diversity and, in some cases, grandeur.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery
 I just liked this epitaph.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Demille
 The monument for Cecil B. DeMille, overlooking Paramount Studios.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Marion Davies
 The great comedic actress, and love of William Randolph Hearst, Marion Davies.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Tyrone Power
 Tyrone Power
Hollywood Forever Cemetery William Clark Jr.
While you may not know him, as someone who donated an outstanding library to UCLA, I am very familiar with the owner of the grandest temple on the grounds, William A. Clark, Jr.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Douglas Fairbanks
 The temple and pond for Douglas Fairbanks and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Douglas Fairbanks

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Douglas Fairbanks

 

Hollywood Forever Lady by Choice
But what was also interesting were how humble and simple the resting places of some of the most famous people in Hollywood were.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Alfalfa
Alfalfa, from Our Gang.  His dad and a picture of his, uh, interesting invention is next to him.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Fay Wray
 If you didn’t know Fay Wray, the love of King Kong, was under this little willow tree, you wouldn’t find her.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Hannah Chaplin
 Charlie Chaplin’s mother.  His son is in a mausoleum on the grounds, as well.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery John Huston

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Janet Gaynor

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Adolphe Menjou
While many are outside under the blue California skies, many of Hollywood’s mighty are locked away in mausoleum interments.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Rudolph Valentino
 The simple resting place of Rudolph Valentino

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery
 Miss Barbara La Marr
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Barbara La Marr

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Eleanor Powell
My favorite dancer, Eleanor Powell.  No one taps better.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Peter Lorre
 “Bad guy” Peter Lorre
Within the masoleums is exquisite artwork.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Stained Glass

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery statue marble

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery stained glass
Now, I could regale you with tales of all of these noted individuals, but then you might not take the tour next year when it is offered.  A few of the graves above I ferreted out on my own and are not part of the tour, but there are cemetery guides online that can show you the locations of these, and other celebrities.  I didn’t go see the Talmadges or Bugsy Siegel, to name a few.  So next time you are in the neighborhood, pay a visit to Hollywood Forever.  The luminaries there were in the spotlight in life and should not be forgotten in death.
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
6000 Santa Monica Boulevard
Los Angeles, California
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2 comments so far.

2 responses to “HOLLYWOOD FOREVER CEMETERY”

  1. tubby3pug says:

    how interesting, i quite like alfalfas grave with a dog on it too

    kate the old fashioned way

  2. Wow, what a beautiful cemetery and it must be really neat to view the final resting place of those great stars!

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