Mount Royal Cemetery

Mount Royal Cemetery

Mount Royal Cemetery Gate in 1895
Established 1852
Location Outremont, Montreal, Quebec
Country Canada
Coordinates 45°30′33″N 73°35′53″W / 45.509123°N 73.598005°W / 45.509123; -73.598005
Type Protestant cemetery, now non-denominational
Size 165 acres (67 ha)
Number of graves 200,000
Website Official website
Designated 1999

Opened in 1852, Mount Royal Cemetery is a 165-acre (67 ha) terraced cemetery on the north slope of Mount Royal in the borough of Outremont, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The burial ground shares the mountain with the much larger adjacent Roman Catholic cemetery -- Cimetière Notre-Dame-des-Neiges. Mount Royal Cemetery is now bordered on the southeast by Mount Royal Park, on the west by Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery and on the north by two Jewish cemeteries.

Although the cemetery is non-denominational today, it continues to be governed by its original charter with a board of trustees representing the founding Protestant denominations.

The cemetery is a private non-profit organization. Burial rights have always been offered in perpetuity with the commitment that no graves would ever be reused or abandoned. The founding charter stipulates that all profits should be entirely devoted to the embellishment and improvement of the property.

Mount Royal Cemetery is in operation and even the old portion of the cemetery still has some burial sites available.[1]

War Graves

The cemetery contains 459 war graves of Commonwealth service personnel, 276 from World War I and 183 from World War II, most of which form two War Plots in Section G. A Cross of Sacrifice stands on the boundary with Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery.[2]

Military graves at Mount Royal did not take significance until World War I, when Canada lost over 60 000 soldiers. After this event, the population of the city started looking toward public memory more seriously, and gave an entire section to war veterans and fallen soldiers.[3]

Mount Royal Crematory

The first crematory in Canada was built by Sir Andrew Taylor in 1901 on the eastern side of the Mount Royal Cemetery property with funds donated by Sir William Christopher Macdonald, a well-known tobacco tycoon and great philanthropist. This building is the oldest of its kind in the country and it remained the only crematorium in Quebec until 1975. The first cremation took place on April 18, 1902.

Built with Montreal limestone, the original building had a chapel, a room for the cremation chambers, a large winter storage vault and a conservatory filled with exotic plants. In the 1950s, for maintenance reasons, the conservatory was demolished but the original chapel, on the left of the building, is still intact with a beautiful hand made mosaic floor.[1]

Notable interments

A few of the prominent people interred in the cemetery are:

See also


  1. 1 2
  2. CWGC Cemetery Report.
  3. Young, Brian with photographs by Geoffrey James. Respectable Burial: Montreal’s Mount Royal Cemetery. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2003.
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