C Tann-Starr's Outside Blog


Welcome to Briarwood: Maple Grove Cemetery's Historic Rich and Famous

Who knew an article authored by Jeff Gottlieb would inspire a turtle walk on a quest for the rich and famous buried at the historic Maple Grove Cemetery?

Established in 1875, I discovered that in August of 2004 Maple Grove Cemetery (MGC) was inducted into The National Register of Historical Places. Major Queens County streets, boulevards, roads and drives are named after many of the notables deposed there such as Elizabeth Riis, John H. Sutphin, Theodire F. Archer, J. Harvey Smedley, Joseph B. Everitt, Edward Mandel, D.R.P. Marquis, Harold G. Cambell and a host of other extraordinary citizens. 

Located directly across from Maple Grove Park in Briarwood, Queens County, New York, there is a very elegant entrance leading into the Maple Grove Cemetery on Queens Blvd. Unfortunately, the ancient stone monument marking the Briarwood entrance was defaced by vandals several years ago and the chemicals used to clean the grafitti marred the surface and beautiful craftsmanship of the work. However, there are numerous outstanding monuments errected throughout the landscape so intricately carved the cemetery has become a quiet tourist attraction. One particularly fetching area that can be viewed directly from Queens Blvd is Liberty Gardens. The stonework is amazing! Out of respect for the deposed, I've limited the selection of eye candy to post, but I must say the landscaping here is exquisite.

To quote Mr. Gottlieb's article, "Opened in 1875, Maple Grove Cemetery is a beautiful, 65-acre burial ground in Kew Gardens, with its main entrance on Kew Gardens Road and Lefferts Boulevard. It was modeled, in part, after the Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn, a 478-acre tract, also well above (478 feet) sea level, and established in 1838 as a rural cemetery and horticultural garden, Maple Grove, like Greenwood, is an oasis in an urban environment."

I can attest to that fact, Mr. Gottlieb. Very well said, indeed.

Here is some eye candy from my turtle walk.






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Comment balloon 13 commentsC Tann-Starr • July 14 2008 06:57AM


C, I love strolling through cemeteries and reading the markers. To me, they are very peaceful places. You took some great photos here. Thanks.

Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) over 12 years ago

Gary, I discovered that NYC cemeteries are actually home to some of the most beautiful artwork in the world. There are mausoleums with Tiffany style windows with the most intricate stained glassed portraits I have ever seen. Some of the stonework is truly amazing! It makes for a very peaceful walk indeed...

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

Wow!  Thanks for sharing.  That looks really nice.

Posted by Melody Botting, You Deserve The Best (Broker Associate PenFed Realty) over 12 years ago

Melody, you are very welcome and it is really a lovely place to visit.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

Carolyn, The name of the Park sounds so familar to me.  My grandmother's home was in South Ozone Park off Lefferts Blvd. but that's not (I don't think) near Kew Gardens....unless she took us there.  Great story, I don't get into Queens as often as I'd like.

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) over 12 years ago

There is a cemetary near my house that has markers in it that date back to the early 1800's.  It's fun to walk through and read the markers and imagine what thier life was like without all of the modern things we have now.

Posted by Clint Miller (Real Estate Pipeline, Inc.) over 12 years ago

Carole, South Ozone Park is only two neighborhoods down (Kew Gardens, Richmond Hills) and very close to where this is located. (It is the same Lefferts Blvd.) I'm looking forward when you do start getting into Queens more. We'll get to do lunch and that is a very lovely thought. :-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

Clint, I know what you mean. Our U.S. family tree runs back to the early 1600s, so I love cemeteries. They are a wealth of information and history for a genealogist.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

"Proper decorum required of all who enter."  I like that.  Being a southerner, I love old cemeteries. 

Posted by Shirley Parks, Broker, 210-414-0966, San Antonio TX Real Estate (Sands Realty 210-414-0966) over 12 years ago

Hey Hey Heyyyyyyyyyy,

I love them rulz!

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) over 12 years ago

Hey Shirley and Don, I love old cemeteries and enjoy the atmosphere created by the people visiting who respect the rules. There is dignity in paying respect to those who have passed before us. The atmosphere is indeed rare on hallowed ground.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

Like Shirley, I like the verbiage about proper decorum, too. So many people show up in shorts and sandals. I've noticed that more and more cemeteries are fenced these days. It used to be a place where kids went years ago to party, if you can believe that. Not that I personally have any first-hand knowledge of that whatsoever . . .

elizabeth weintraub sacramento real estate agent

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (RE/MAX Gold) over 12 years ago

Hey Elizabeth, there are a few cemeteries that are on lock-down near high schools where teenagers have desecrated graves. It's a shame that some people can be so disrespectful...

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 12 years ago

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