The Necropolis: A Victorian Cemetery

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Toronto Necropolis

200 Winchester Street
Neighbourhood: Cabbagetown

Toronto NecropolisThere are many cemeteries throughout Toronto, but one of the oldest, most historic, and especially picturesque cemeteries is the Necropolis. Dating back to 1850, its distinctive Victorian Gothic entry creates a gateway to another era. The site sits on a bluff overlooking the Don River Valley. Cremation burial plots include an area around a central black granite sculpture, “Onward,” by Canadian artist Kosso Eloul. One of the memorial scattering areas features a sculpture by Canadian artist Juliet Jancso. The work depicts a family of three and represents the local, Depression-era Cabbagetown community.

The Gothic Revival chapel, built in 1872, contains columbarium niches. Grave markers feature Victorian spires, obelisks, and a variety of traditional granite blocks. Within the Necropolis you’ll find graves for many distinctive Torontonians:

  • The city’s first mayor, William Lyon Mackenzie
  • Journalist George Brown, who founded the Toronto Globe (which later became the Globe and Mail)
  • Anderson Ruffin Abbot, the first Canadian-born black surgeon and doctor
  • Black entrepreneur Thornton Blackburn, who started the city’s first taxi service in 1834
  • World-champion oarsman Ned Hanlan
  • Archaeologist Joseph Burr Tyrell, who discovered the tyrannosaur species named Albertosaurus


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