Think it would be cool to be buried in the 166-year-old cemetery? You still can.
Although Hollywood Cemetery is the final resting place for roughly 80,000 people (of which Confederate soldiers account for 18,000), people can still be interred among its 135 acres.
“We’re still very much an active cemetery,” said Hollywood’s general manager, David Gilliam, by phone last week. He said the cemetery, privately-owned since it opened in 1847, performs roughly 200 funeral services annually.
Last year, Hollywood installed cobblestone pathways with cremation niches, some near the burial place of President James Monroe. “You can [now] choose options in sections of the cemetery that had been closed off,” he said. Cremation services currently run between $4,000 to $10,000. Despite the added cremation niches, Gilliam said cremation spaces “are limited for Hollywood.”
If interested in calling Hollywood your residence for the remainder of time, you’re more likely to find space below ground. There are roughly 3,000 in-ground burial spaces, which Gilliam estimates will likely remain open through the next 16 to 20 years. In-ground plots cost between $3,000 – $6,000.
Mausoleums are also available for purchase. These typically cost $10,000 to house a single casket, and $15,000 for two.
Gilliam said Hollywood is unique cemetery. “Unlike others that are owned by corporations or municipalities, proceeds from sales stay here on the property,” he said. He added that the Friends of Hollywood Cemetery, an organization created in 2007 to foster community outreach, has helped show that the cemetery isn’t merely a burial place, but a community asset. “The cemetery is intended for everyone,” Gilliam said. “Not just to our lot owners, but to the public.”
photo by Mr. Johnson