Calvary Monument

First Calvery, Greenpoint Ave., Gale St.


Directions via Google Maps

This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

This park, in a triangle formed by First Calvary, Green Avenue, and Gale Street within Calvary Cemetery, has roots in the history of the Roman Catholic Church in Manhattan. In 1817, the Trustees of St. Patrick's Cathedral (now called Old St. Patrick's Cathedral) on Mott Street realized that their original cemetery on Mulberry Street was almost full. They drew up a charter for a burial ground in Queens, and on October 29, 1845, the Trustees bought 71 acres of land from John McMenoy and John McNolte. They named the cemetery after Mount Calvary, where Jesus Christ was crucified, according to the New Testament. The first burial in Calvary Cemetery took place on July 31, 1848. Since then, the Roman Catholic cemetery, which now comprises Old Calvary Cemetery and New Calvary Cemetery, has expanded to 365 acres, and is the largest cemetery in the United States.

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