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Inside the mausoleum at Rose Hills Cemetery in Whittier, CA. Rose Hills is now the largest cemetery in the world, a far cry from its 18-acre beginnings. Formerly known as Whittier Heights Memorial Park, it was founded in 1914 by Augustus Gregg on a section of the Rancho Paso de Bartolo land grant. In 1917 the first modest indoor mausoleum was built, which was only the second such structure in California. In 1930, a larger structure, the Portal de la Paz was opened to the public. Architecturally, it recalls the California Missions with elaborate marble floors and stained glass windows.

The terraforming itself is impressive: much of the expansion over the past several decades has involved earthmoving and redevelopment to contour rugged hillsides into parks and gardens. To date, some 25 million cubic yards of soil has been moved, which is equal to one-sixth of the amount of earth moved to create the Panama Canal. Today, the entire site is comprised of more than 1,400 acres, and there are numerous offices and locations throughout southern California.

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Additional Photos by Terez Anon (terez93) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 74 W: 78 N: 588] (1356)
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