|Cecil E. Bryan, http://beechermausoleum.org/cecil-e-bryan/|
Frank Crane compiled a brochure of Cecil E. Bryan's mausoleum designs in 1917. He aspired to build better, more perfect mausoleums to honor those who have passed, and yet give the visitors of these solemn places a spiritual experience.
|Community Mausoleums, by Frank Crane, brochure of the work of Cecil E. Bryan, 1917|
Mr. Bryan was well known for his respectful, stately designs of these buildings. His buildings can be found across the nation, in some of the most beautiful cemeteries ever seen. And, he built them to last long after the descendants of those entombed have passed. Keeping to the goals of providing a dry, well- built building, Mr. Bryan went a bit farther with incorporating Greek and Roman architecture to create an impressive edifice.
The following are some of the mausoleums designed by Cecil Bryan. Perhaps you may have seen some of these :
|The Rockford Cemetery Mausoleum, Rockford, Illinois|
|The Beecher Cemetery Mausoleum, Beecher, Illinois|
|The Elmhurst Cemetery Mausoleum, Elmhurst, Illinois|
The idea of building a mausoleum for storing the remains of lost lives is an idea that is not so new. It has been a tradition in many civilizations of the world. Hadrian's tomb in Rome, Italy, the Taj Mahal in India, Westminster Abbey in London, England and Joseph Francis' tomb in the House of Hapsburg in Vienna, Austria are just a few of the structures built to entomb the remains of those who have reigned in the past.
The following photo of the mausoleum in Oak Brook, Illinois (formerly Hinsdale), built in 1913 at the Bronswood Cemetery, shows Mr. Bryan's love of Roman architecture. Fortunately, I have been able to enter this building which is kept locked to keep it from being vandalized.
|The Bronswood Mausoleum, Bronswood Cemetery then located in Hinsdale, IL, 1913|
|Recent photo of the mausoleum at Bronswood Cemetery, 2009|
|Interior receiving room in the Bronswood Mausoleum|
|Interior stained glass, Bronswood mausoleum, Oak Brook, Illinois, 2009|
Some families are lucky enough to purchase their own private entombment room, like the Norling and Chapek families, below:
|The Norling private family entombment room|
|The Chapek family private room|
The interior walls of Mr. Bryan's mausoleums are usually adorned with prayers and solemn quotes, such as the one below from the interior of the Bronswood Cemetery mausoleum:
|Interior wall of Bronswood Cemetery mausoleum|
|Each private family burial room has a beautiful stained glass window|
|Absolutely gorgeous designs used in the windows all over the interior of the Bronswood Cemetery mausoleum|
To learn more about Cecil E. Bryan and his career in mausoleum design, consult http://beechermausoleum.org/cecil-e-bryan/
2009 exterior and interior photos of Bronswood Cemetery mausoleum take by S. R. Reif
Exterior photos of other mausoleums from the noted brochure, and can be found on www.archive.org