Cemeteries | Rosehil | Calvary | Graceland | Oak Woods
The Rosehill Cemetery was chartered 11 February 1859. The land was 500 acres lying 6-1/2 miles north of the City of Chicago. The cemetery was dedicated by the laying of the corner-stone of the chapel with Masonic ceremonies on 28 July 1859. The first interment was the remains of Dr. J. W. Ludlam on 14 July 1859.
Rosehill’s castellated entrance was designed by William Boyington who also designed the Chicago Water Tower. The name of the cemetery was supposedly taken from a tavern keeper named “Roe” and the area was referred to as “Roe’s Hill”. Eventually the name was truncated to “Rosehill.”
In addition to the magnificent arch, Rosehill also features a capacious receiving vault and a spacious chapel; a steady flow of clear water is obtained from an artesian well; a number of artificial lakes have been formed; there are large and handsome greenhouses amd conservatories; the avenues, drives and walks are constructed to be durable and permanent; the grounds are well tended. The number of interments in 1885 were close to 30,000.
Rosehill is also the site of a haunting. In his will, Charles Hopkinson, a real estate tycoon from the middle 1800’s, left plans for his mausoleum to serve as a shrine to the memory of he and his family. When he died in 1885, a miniature cathedral was designed to serve as the tomb. Construction was started and then halted when the property owners behind the Hopkinson site took the family to court. The claimed that the cathedral tomb would block the view of their site. The case proceeded all of the way to the Illinois Supreme Court, which ruled that the other family had no say over what sort of monument the Hopkinson family built and they should have expected that something could block the view of their site. Shortly after, construction on the site continued. Despite the fact that the courts ruled in the favor of Hopkinson, it is said that on the anniversary of the real estate investor’s death, a horrible moaning sound can be heard coming from the tomb, followed by what appears to be sound of rattling chains.
Rosehill has the most burial placements of Union Civil War soldiers in the Midwest. Montgomery Ward, Richard Sears, Julius Rosenwald, Long John Wentworth and Oscar Meyer are buried here. Rosehill Cemetery is located at 3800 Ravenswood Avenue.