James A. Garfield Memorial

From Wikipedia
James A. Garfield Memorial
Garfield Memorial 2013-09-14 17-58-11.jpg
James A. Garfield Memorial is located in Cleveland
James A. Garfield Memorial
James A. Garfield Memorial is located in Ohio
James A. Garfield Memorial
James A. Garfield Memorial is located in the United States
James A. Garfield Memorial
Location12316 Euclid Ave. in Lake View Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio
Coordinates 41°30′36″N 81°35′29″W / 41.51000°N 81.59139°W / 41.51000; -81.59139
JAMES A. GARFIELD MEMORIAL Latitude and Longitude:

41°30′36″N 81°35′29″W / 41.51000°N 81.59139°W / 41.51000; -81.59139
Area0.5 acres (0.20 ha)
Architect George Keller; Caspar Buberl, sculptor
Architectural styleGothic, Romanesque
NRHP reference  No. 73001411 [1]
Added to NRHPApril 11, 1973

The James A. Garfield Memorial is a memorial dedicated to assassinated President James A. Garfield and located in Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, Ohio, in the United States. The memorial, built from is a combination of Byzantine, Gothic, and Romanesque Revival styles, began construction in October 1885 and was dedicated on May 30, 1890. Garfield; his wife, former First Lady Lucretia Garfield; and two other members of the Garfield family are entombed in the crypt level of the monument.

The monument was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

Site selection

President James A. Garfield, a resident of nearby Mentor, Ohio, was shot in Washington, D.C., on July 2, 1881. He died on September 19, 1881. Garfield himself had expressed the wish to be buried at Lake View Cemetery, [2] [3] [4] and the cemetery offered a burial site free of charge to his widow, Lucretia Garfield. [5] [a]

Mrs. Garfield agreed to bury her husband at Lake View. [7] Even before Garfield's funeral, plans were laid by his friends and admirers for a grand tomb to be erected at a high point in the cemetery. [8]

The Garfield Memorial Committee selected the highest point in the cemetery in June 1883 for the president's final resting place. [9] Lake View Cemetery built a road around the memorial in early 1885, and began work on cutting a road from the Euclid Gate to the memorial site later that fall. The cemetery also began work on making improvements to the landscape, water, and drainage around the site. [10]

Design and construction

The tomb was designed by architect George Keller [11] in the Byzantine, Gothic, and Romanesque Revival styles. [12] All the stone for the monument came from the quarries of the Cleveland Stone Company, and was quarried locally. [13] The exterior reliefs, which depict scenes from Garfield's life, [11] were done by Caspar Buberl. Its cost, $135,000 ($3,800,000 in 2019 dollars), was funded entirely through private donations. [14] Part of the memorial's funding came from pennies sent in by children throughout the country. [15]

The round tower is 50 feet (15 m) in diameter and 180 feet (55 m) high. [16] Around the exterior of the balcony are five terra cotta panels with over 110 life size figures depicting Garfield's life and death. [17]

The interior features stained glass windows and window like panes representing the original 13 colonies, plus the state of Ohio, along with panels depicting War and Peace; [17] mosaics; deep red granite columns; and a 12-foot (3.7 m)-tall white Carrara marble statue of President Garfield by Alexander Doyle. An observation deck provides views of downtown Cleveland and Lake Erie.

Construction on the memorial began on October 6, 1885, [18] and it was dedicated on May 30, 1890. [19]

The caskets of the President and Lucretia Garfield lie in a crypt beneath the memorial, along with the ashes of their daughter (Mary "Mollie" Garfield Stanley-Brown [1867–1947]) and son-in-law Joseph Stanley Brown. [16] Lucretia Garfield died on March 13, 1918, and was interred in the Garfield Memorial on March 21. [20]

Operational history

Since the Garfield Memorial was private, the committee overseeing its operation charged an entry fee of 10 cents per person to defray its maintenance costs. [6]

In late October 1923, the Garfield National Monument Association turned the Garfield Memorial over to Lake View Cemetery. Most of the Monument Association's members had died, and its charter did not permit for a self-perpetuating board. After accepting title to the memorial and its land, Lake View Cemetery immediately ended the practice of charging a 10 cent ($2 in 2019 dollars) admission fee to the memorial. [21] Lake View also began cleaning, repairing, and rehabilitating the memorial. [21] [22]

Lake View Cemetery spent $5 million in 2016 and 2017 conserving, repairing, and upgrading the memorial's structural elements. This included reinforcing beams and columns in the basement. [23]

In 2019, the cemetery began a multi-million-dollar project to clean the exterior and repoint any damaged or missing mortar. [23] It is the first time in the memorial's history that the exterior has been cleaned. [12]

The memorial closes every winter on November 19 (President Garfield's birthday) and reopens in April. [23]


  1. ^ The land for the memorial was worth $55,000 ($1,500,000 in 2019 dollars). [6]
  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  2. ^ Brown 1881, p. 280.
  3. ^ Thayer 1889, p. 438.
  4. ^ "At Lake View". The Plain Dealer. September 20, 1881. p. 3.
  5. ^ "Dispatch to Mrs. Garfield Tendering Grounds in Lake View Cemetery". The Plain Dealer. September 20, 1881. p. 1.
  6. ^ a b "To Be Beautified". The Plain Dealer. December 20, 1896. p. 2.
  7. ^ "In Mourning". The Plain Dealer. September 21, 1881. p. 8; "Garfield's Burial Place". The Plain Dealer. October 3, 1881. p. 1.
  8. ^ Lossing 1882, p. 742.
  9. ^ "Garfield's Grave". The Plain Dealer. June 27, 1883. p. 1.
  10. ^ "The East End". The Plain Dealer. September 10, 1885. p. 8.
  11. ^ a b Foster & Hughes 1922, p. 853.
  12. ^ a b Rice, Karin Connelly (September 12, 2019). "150 years of solitude at Lake View Cemetery". Freshwater Cleveland. Retrieved August 23, 2020.
  13. ^ "Marion. Ohio's Gem—A Forest Village". The Plain Dealer. August 15, 1886. p. 5.
  14. ^ Gilman, D. C.; Peck, H. T.; Colby, F. M., eds. (1906). "Garfield Monument" . New International Encyclopedia (1st ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead.
  15. ^ Gibbons, Thomas (April 2012). "Our Presidents". Cleveland Visitor. Independence OH: City Visitor Communications.
  16. ^ a b "Garfield Monument". The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. 1998-03-27. Retrieved 2010-03-23.
  17. ^ a b Glaser, Susan (13 July 2016). "James A. Garfield tour of Northeast Ohio, from log cabin to Lawnfield to Lake View Cemetery". cleveland.com. AdvanceOhio. Retrieved 7 July 2017.
  18. ^ "Garfield Monument". The Plain Dealer. October 7, 1885. p. 4.
  19. ^ Morton 2004, p. 8.
  20. ^ "Garfield Remains Laid at Rest Here". The Plain Dealer. March 22, 1918. p. 4.
  21. ^ a b "James A. Garfield Monument Taken Over By Cemetery". The Plain Dealer. October 19, 1923. p. 1.
  22. ^ Webb, J.H. (June 28, 1931). "Recalling Garfield's Assassination". The Plain Dealer. pp. Plain Dealer Magazine Section 1, 13, 17.
  23. ^ a b c Kilpatrick, Mary (February 6, 2020). "What the heck is happening to the Garfield monument in Cleveland's Lake View Cemetery?". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved August 23, 2020.


External links