Wednesday, December 17, 2008

We are back at "Hollywood Forever".....I thought It might be interesting to see some of the Hollywood History that abounds in this beautiful place. Many of the early Giants of The Picture Business are buried here, and as was pointed out to me by "The Fat Lady", a frequent commenter here, many many many other important people in the film business like Costumers, Grips, Editors, Property People, etc., etc., are buried here as well. In that picture above, right there in the center....close to the ground is the Cohn crypt.....Harry Cohn was the Heart & Soul of Columbia Pictures---the founder of Columbia Pictures, which by the way is just a few blocks away from this beautiful Cemetery..... A slightly closer side view of this simple but elegant crypt.....And below, the details, as we see them and take them in..... And then the further details, below...... It is over 50 years since Harry Cohn died.....His Funeral, they say, was SRO---Standing Room Only. They also say...."Give the people what they want, and they will come....". Harry Cohn was one of the most hated men in the industry, at that time.....But, Columbia Studios was one of the Giants. That big building, behind the Cohn crypt is one of the two Mausoleum's at Hollywood Forever. That is where some of those Beautiful Stained Glass Windows are located.....It is rumored that those Windows were designed by Tiffany, but I don't know if that is accurate, or not.....What I do know is that this is where Rudolph Valentino is buried, (Remember I showed his Crypt....?) as well as many many other people......Do you remember this man? Peter Finch is best remembered for his stunning performance in the important film, "Network", (Original Screenplay by Paddy Chayefsky) , where he uttered those now oft quoted words...."I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!".....He won the Best Actor Academy Award that year, posthumously.....He had died soon after finishing that film. And though he had given many great performance besides 'Howard Beale'.....this was his last and according to his peers, the Best that year! I agree, completely! Above, Tyrone Power's lovely spot here in Hollywood Forever.....It is a very beautiful Bench on a slight slope, with a built in Urn for flowers..... And, as you can see above.....someone has left a pot with flowers right on top of the Bench.....Carved into the top of the bench is a quotation from Shakespeare's "Hamlet"...... Tyrone Power was one of the handsomest men in pictures back in the 30's and 40's.....and even in to the early 50's.....I think in many ways his 'beauty' overshadowed his talent, which sometimes happens when someone is so very perfect looking....But he was indeed, a truly wonderful actor.....And his spot in Hollywood Forever is a very beautiful tribute to this talented man. There are always flowers there, at least there have been, every time I've ever been there...... This is a Mini Mausoleum....a very pretty little building....with some lovely detail on it......The doors are locked of course with only the family havinf the keys....... The above, taken from behind the little building....The color of the building no longer effected by the late afternoon sun.....And here below, a detail of the back of the building...... And you probably would like to know who's Mini Mausoleum this is....Well, from the front, once again, the late afternoon sun affecting the color.....Here is the family name. Douras. Yes, that "V" is really a "U".....And who, might you ask, is that??
Well, this was Marion Davies family name. So buried in this little building are the infamous Marion Davies, some of her family, including one of her sisters daughters and that daughters husband, Arthur Lake, who played 'Dagwood Bumstead' in the "Blondie" movies, opposite Penny Singleton.....! Patricia Van Cleeve Lake, (Arthur's wife) was in actuality rumored to be the illegitimate daughter of Marion Davies and William Randolph Hearst. Whatever the truth is, both Patricia and Arthur Lake are buried in the Douras Family Mausoleum at 'Hollywood Forever'......
This picture above....Well, this is probably, to me, the most important monument in Hollywood Forever. Oh yes, I will show a closer look.....This is now where Hattie McDaniel is buried. Remember her? One of the Great Great Performances in "Gone With The Wind"....She played 'Mammy', and she was more than magnificent.....She actually won An Academy Award for her performance back in 1939-40---the very first person of color to win an Oscar. The scene that clinched it was Mammy walking up the stairs with 'Melanie'...All One Take---ONE TAKE.....Telling Melanie what happened after little Bonnie Blue Butler, the daughter of Rhett and Scarlett, died in a Horse riding accident, as Melanie and Mammy walk up that long, long, long flight of stairs....

Hattie McDaniel always wanted to be buried in The Hollywood Cemetery----Now, Hollywood Forever.....But at the time of her death and for many years later...This Cemetery was 'all white'. In 1999, Hattie McDaniel git her wish and her remains were moved to 'Hollywood Forever'.....righting a terrible terrible wrong and giving her, her very last wish.........As Blanche Dubois said..."Sometimes there's God so quickly...." Oh, do, click on this to make it bigger and then you can read what they said........I so admire the people who own 'Hollywood Forever' now, for 'righting' this wrong...... And another very elegant grave site. The DeMille Family. Cecil B. DeMille, another true Giant in the film industry.....this is their burial ground. And if you do not know who DeMille was....well, he spanned 'the silents' to the "talkies"......He made so very many incredible films.....and, appeared in some, too, including the great Billy Wilder film, "Sunset Blvd.", where he played himself.....This is the DeMille Family Plot.

And remember that lovely Angel Statue where the little black bird was sitting? Well, that is Don Adams plot.....There is even a picture there of him just sitting on the ground, which did seem rather strange to me, but, as you can see, there it is......I have absolutely no desire to be "buried" under the ground....But if I did.....this is the place I'd like to be.....It is so peaceful and beautiful, and has so much "life" all around the grounds what with the Mallard Ducks and The Canadian Geese, etc......This would be the place for me if I didn't want my ashes strewn to the winds right here in my own garden.......

More To Come.........

5:41 pm--Note: Danny Miller left a comment regarding Hattie McDaniel's remains, correcting my mistake. She was buried in Rosewood Cemetery, though it was indeed her wish to be buried in The Hollywood Cemetery. The new owners of now Hollywood Forever, did want to right that wrong and give her, her last wish. But her family did not want to disturb her remains after so very many years, and declined the offer. But, the owner's of Hollywood Forever wanted to at least erect a monument to her, right there near the Pond, which they did. But Hattie McDaniel remains in Rosewood......Thanks Danny, for the correction.

Links to this post:


had this to say:

so strange that you mention Penny Singletons name.. i ran across a photo I took of her from a show when I lived in CA.. she stayed such a beauty even ad she grew older... i loved those old Blondie movies!!

what a trip down memory lane to walk among the stars at the cemetary.. beautiful and sad. so many i loved, so many we wish were still here and could meet them... so many.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 3:11:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

wow who said you cant take your money with you. they sure spent a lot of money on some of those resting places. thanks so much for sharing i didn't think a graveyard could be a cool place 2 visit but thanks 2 u i see a different point of view now.

rock on!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 6:46:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Fabulous, Naomi. I still can NOT believe that I've never been to Hollywood Forever considering my obsession with the old stars. I will rectify that very soon.

One correction, though. Hattie McDaniel is NOT buried there. Her body is still at Rosedale, the cemetery right by my house that is the only one at that time that accepted people of all races. True, she wanted to be buried at that Hollywood cemetery so several years ago they built that lovely memorial for her there. And true, the cemetery offered to have her remains moved, but the family refused, saying something like "they wouldn't take her then, they can't have her now." I just saw Hattie's grave at Rosedale again when I was there a few weeks ago, it's very unassuming although she had a huge funeral.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 7:00:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Beautiful, so serene!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 7:53:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Wow this just might be my favorite post yet!

I love the quote:
"If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever"
Oh how true, how true for so so so many.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 8:13:00 AM PST 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Another fine walk through the cemetery! Thank you for snapping pix of our favorites. Hope there is more to come....I just love reading about the Stars who have left us and seeing their final resting place.

No "under the ground" for me either, Naomi. Sprinkle me on the beach.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 8:56:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Every summer they show movies there! This year we plan on attending. I've never been there and I have always wanted to.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 11:45:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I've yet to get to this cemetery. I keep meaning to! So so much history. I loved your info about Hattie McDaniel; I had no idea.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 12:04:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Oh, I love it when you take me on such awesome tours...Very interesting!

Enjoyed the u-tube of Gone with the Wind - my all time favorite movie...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 12:11:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

So mstrange ... I just got my BLOG up and running and was writting yesterday about taking photos at cemeteries and up you pop with this!! I loved it! I am going to post some pics I took at Greenwood Cemetery in Brookly so you will have to keep an eye on my Blog! I also being another Long Island girl! Please visit ... I don't think anyone has come except VV. Thanks for your support, I am brand new to this so forgive the errors!! I am at Maeves Madness:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 2:42:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

That was fascinating. I also love cemeteries and visit them whenever I get a chance-- especially old ones. Which is ironic as like you, I plan to be cremated. If I am still living here at the farm, I said I want my ashes just put in a hole in the ground where all of the animals have been put who lived and died on this place. If I don't own this farm at that time, I'll have to rethink where but definitely cremation and for me no markers anywhere. Life was enough of a marker

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 3:00:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

What glorious grave sites some of those famous showbiz people have! I love all the white marble tombs and the elegant settings, such a very serene cemetery to walk through.
I won't have a tomb when I go, or even a headstone. I'd like my ashes to be scattered along the sea cliffs in my home town in England, where I'll be close to the sea.
Your information on Hattie McDaniel and her wish to be buried in that Hollywood cemetery was so interesting, I'm so glad she got her wish finally. Do you know, I have never seen "Gone With The Wind"? I must be the only person in the whole world who has never seen it!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 3:22:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I just read Danny's comment about Hattie McDaniel.... so she didn't get her wish after all! But at least she got a memorial.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 3:24:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Naomi,,, you are obsessed with that cemetary!! lol. I like the sunsets down below. Sunsets are one of my favorite things to look at. Hope you have a very Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 4:15:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I love cemeteries. I must be a freak of nature. My favorite cemetery is in my hometown. It's called "Evergreen Cemetery." It sits atop a hill overlooking the entire town and a great stretch of the Susquehanna River. I'm going back home this weekend. If the weather isn't too awful, I'll try to get some shots of it. I don't know how old the cemetery is, but believe I saw tombstones from the 1700s up there during one summer hike through the grounds. It's not like newer cemeteries. It's hilly, grassy, huge trees all over, twists and turns and elevation changes among all the plats. They'd never do that now, too hard to mow and maintain. That's where I'd like to be buried, somewhere near the edge and near the Indian Princess, Sa-sa-na Loft, where it overlooks the river. Oh, and I received your gift today. Thank you so much. It was so unexpected and very much appreciated.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 6:48:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Thanks for the tour. As I've said, I love wandering through cemetaries and reading gravestones.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 7:38:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Another very interesting post, Naomi. I don't want to be buried either, but that is a serene and beautiful spot.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 9:15:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Thank you for the tour of Hollywood Forever. So many afmous names and so forth - I enjoyed this tour as much as I enjoyed the other tours you have given us off this cemetery. One place I would seriously love to spend some time... Thank you Naomi.

Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 8:12:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Dear Naomi,
when talking about Grave sites, I'm thinking of my Son and Father and my fathers Parents.
They are all rested in the Family Grave.
And you know, around X-Mas grief and strong feelings overshadows daily life.
I'm still in deep grief after the loss of my son Ruben.

On X-Mas early afternoon, we will lit the candles on his and the Family Grave.
I've bought a Candle that will burn for 72 hours. The Candle will be placed in a glass "Lanterna", to shelter it from Wind and Snow and rain.

btw. Your post is wonderful, but at this moment, my feelings simply took overhand. Can't help it. I weep.


Hope to come back and read and comment your fantastic blog without too long.


Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 3:32:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Another interesting post Naomi! They sure have some nice monuments there, to say the least! I can't imagine how much those cost considering how much a tiny one costs around here.

That's so sad that they wouldn't let Hattie McDaniel be buried there if that's what she wanted. I mean at the time she died. I guess I can understand her family not wanting her moved and that's their choice. It was so nice of Hollywood Forever erecting that monument for her though! It's such a lovely and peaceful looking place.

Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 5:32:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I, too, loved the quote "if love could've saved you..." on Don Adam's plot and all the wonderful monuments you've shown here. The photo of Hattie McDaniel's monument with the flowers and the ducks in the water (in the background) is just beautiful.

Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 7:26:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

This is am amazing post - thank you!

Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 8:47:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I'm always interested in what people choose to write on their gravestones, like the final byline. A very green and serene cemetery.

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 5:47:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I still have a hard time believing how people were treated because their skin wasn't white. It is mind boggling to believe we are any different or better because of a color. That was a very interesting post. And I thank you as always for the history you're teaching me.

I saw a special on the other night and it brought up Douglas Fairbanks and I thought of you and your post from Hollywood Forever that involved him.

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 7:48:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Hi Naomi. Thank you for the tour to Hollywood Forever.

Wishing you a good week ahead...LOL.

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 7:58:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Thanks for sharing this, Naomi. I've never wandered in there. Someday I will.

I'm with you --I don't want to be buried like this either. Those monuments seem so cold and final. I like the idea of being strewn in one's garden. Makes much more sense to join plants that are living.

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 9:17:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

What a wonderful tour guide you are. Walking around Hollywood Forever is like a history lesson and who's who of Hollywood past. What a lovely serene place to while away some time :)

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 12:13:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

It's so good to be back at your blog. It's been a long time since I've read, I had forgotten how much I enjoy you.

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 1:39:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I have not been visiting and I am so sorry. When my blog went down about a year ago and I lost the sidebar, I somehow lost you. Now that I have found your place, I will be back often.

Your post is a beautiful tribute to Hollywood and its golden past. One of these days, I will take the time to visit the cemetary and see it for myself.

I once met Tyrone Power in Minneapolis. It was in the early 1950"s. He was handsome beyond words!

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 7:02:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Again, what beautiful and peaceful pictures and a lovely tribute to Hattie McDaniel

Friday, December 19, 2008 at 8:07:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I noticed Don Adams when you originally posted that picture. My life is full of synchronicity because we had just watched the new Get Smart movie. I also find cemetaries very peaceful and relaxing. About 15 years ago, I went to Carlyle, Illinois with my second husband for his sister's wedding. We took a walk down to a great old cemetery and both fell asleep! We were about 15 minutes late for the rehearsal dinner.

Saturday, December 20, 2008 at 12:07:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Hey, go check out Maeve's Madness today. She's got a post up about a cemetery in Brooklyn and the tombstones are unbelievably gorgeous!

Sunday, December 21, 2008 at 4:52:00 PM PST 

Blogger Sky
had this to say:

what a nice tour...thank you. i always enjoy visiting cemeteries, reading the text on the stones, figuring out how old they were when they died, creating a story of the lives of all the family members around them. it is just fascinating to me.

Monday, December 22, 2008 at 3:41:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I certainly do remember the performances of Hattie McDaniel and Peter Finch. Both very deserving of their oscars.
I love that phrase "I'm mad as hell, and I'm not gonna take it anymore!!" Sometimes we all just feel that way, boy oh boy to have the freedom to open the windows and let that fly out... I remember that movie well.
Also, the role of Mammy was wonderful. I've always loved that movie, and she was a great part of why it is so good.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 at 4:25:00 PM PST 

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