Update: I went back to the mausoleum in late May of 2020.
We’re not sure, but it seems like the historic Biddle Mausoleum might have suffered more damage over the winter.
For some reason, I had neglected to photograph the the two portrait busts of Thomas Biddle and Anne Mullanphy.
The roof in particular seems to have a hole in it.
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Who is responsible for the upkeep of these mausoleums? Is it the descendants through a trust or will or the cemetery?
Depends, I would imagine; if the contract says perpetual care, then the cemetery does. I don’t know the legal situation with the tomb.
This is one of the most handsome mausoleums I’ve ever seen; it’s amazing! Could it be that the hole in the roof is an oculus (as seen at the Pantheon, etc.)?
A view of the oculus: https://www.google.com/search?q=biddle+mausoleum+calvary+cemetery&espv=2&biw=1600&bih=887&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=3f0aVaG_OKmxsAStyICIDw&ved=0CE0QsAQ&dpr=0.9#imgdii=_&imgrc=9uAb96uQTnoJ_M%253A%3Bqjrt9Te9YTwQTM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Flh4.ggpht.com%252FGUSbTZ6K-DQCbv_yETAYtKIbn3BucOOt22rCmt5XpEf521natYN-j0gJrLEO7eGHOKOqXyKgLyFPCSlrgk8nZClS%253Ds285-c%3Bhttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.pixoto.com%252Fannie.chartrand.77%252Fawards%3B285%3B285
If this does not work, just do a Google Search for “Biddle mausoleum Calvary Cemetery” and then click on “Images’ and it will be available in the top row, second from the right.
Thank you, Tom! It’s good to know that the hole in the roof was intentional. I’ve never been to this cemetery, but am certainly impressed. This particular tomb is definitely worthy of some serious restoration; I hope it receives it.
The oculus can be viewed on Bing Birdseye by entering 38.699269, -90.234759, zooming and rotating. Google or Bing satellite views are not nearly defined enough.
There should be one small hole that allows for light to fall through the oculus.
Cool. I worked at Bellefontaine Cemetery during the summer as a kid, but I’ve never actually been in Calvary. I’ll have to change that. Is that limestone? It definitely looks older than your average Bellefontaine mausoleum, which I believe are almost all granite.
Mark, yes it appears to be limestone or sandstone. It is indeed very old; the sign says that it was moved there after cholera fears closed the cemeteries downtown.