Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Miami City Cemetery

I had a mental list of things I wanted to do while on vacation in Florida. I sent my friend Beth of Grave Addiction a Facebook message asking her if she was familiar with any cemeteries in the Miami area. She said that she heard from a friend that the Miami City Cemetery was pretty cool. If you are going to listen to anyone's friends regarding cemeteries, friends of Beth would be the first place I would start! She's all knowing so I'm sure her friends are reliable sources!

The night before I started off on my adventure I was at the apartment talking to Robin's roommate, Michael, while she was at work. We were discussing things I wanted to do while in Florida. I mentioned the cemetery and that I also wanted to see South Beach and Versace's mansion where he was murdered - yes, morbid... I know! - I'm sure that is not something that's on everyone's "must see" list when visiting South Beach!

Micheal started talking non-stop about that we could go the next night after Robin got off work and he could show me all the places. I said that Robin would probably be too tired to go after a long 12-hour shift and his response was "she can sleep in the back of the car!" Well, I never gave Michael an answer, but he just went with making these plans. He obviously didn't know me at all. I'm an independent person and would MUCH prefer to discover places on my own and not from the passenger side of a car. I appreciate the offer, but being someone's tour prisoner is not my idea of much fun. I want to stop when I want to stop, If I have to drive around a block 10 times to get the perfect picture I'm going to do it. Yeah, that didn't sound like much fun to me. Besides, I knew that Robin wouldn't want to do it.

The next morning I got up, charged my camera batteries and hit the road. I hopped on 95 South and headed toward Miami City Cemetery. I was surprised to find the cemetery was located right in the heart of Miami, not too far from the Miami Herald. The cemetery itself wasn't that big and that surprised me a bit. I parked in the middle of the cemetery because I saw a restroom. I had to go! I got out of the car and saw the grounds keeper who was kind enough to unlock the restroom for my use. When I came out he and I started chatting (I wish I had gotten his name!) and we talked for about an hour! He was a wealth of knowledge about the cemetery. He told me that he was the only person that cared for the cemetery, including the burials. Wow. He gave me pointers on what the sections of the cemetery were and also info on the notable people buried there.

I started walking around and took some photos. I spent so much time talking to the caretaker that I didn't get to spend as much time as I would have liked there, but the conversation was well worth it!

I love the "old" and "new" views from the Miami City Cemetery!

The photo above is one of my all time favorite graves. It reads:

The body of Carrie Barrett Miller
was moulded in this solid block of
concrete December 4th, 1926.
After the body has gone to dust, her
sleeping form will remain.

I Googled the name "Carrie Barrett Miller" and found an excerpt that her husband wrote after her death that wound up in American Mercury Magazine in 1927 - this man loved his wife!! - so beautiful!:

Even though it's located in the middle of the city of Miami, the cemetery is a lovely and relaxing place to visit, almost like a park.

Across the street from the cemetery is a huge mural honoring Miami urban artist Purvis Young. Sadly, it looks like the the person who created this masterpiece spelled Mr. Young's name wrong. I love stumbling across things like this. How else would I have ever learned of this talented artist?

As I drove around Miami, I found several other pieces of street art, which I always love to look at!

After wandering aimlessly around Miami I decided to head out to Miami Beach and more specifically, South Beach. I had a couple of places I really wanted to check out, but that tale has to wait for another blog post!


Miami Beach Luxury Condos said...

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Loria Schleiff said...

Who is Carrie Barrett Miller? She must have been a big personality when she was alive because her tombstone isn't like the ones we see usually. Anyway, those parting words from her husband were simply bittersweet. He truly loved her deeply.

Anonymous said...

Carrie Barrett Miller is my great great grandfather's 2nd wife. Carrie's husband, William F. Miller (W.F.), is also buried there in a less extravagant plot. W.F. invented diving helmets and was part owner of the Miller-Dunn (Diving) Co. Family folklore states he died poor and at one time owned land in what is today now known as Coral Gables, FL. From what I have been able to find, W.F. read to Carrie while she was ill. One of his favorites was National Geographic Magazine and I read somewhere he got the idea for Carrie’s burial from an article which referenced the Mount Vesuvius volcanic explosion in which people were coated in ash and died. (Funny thing – we always had National Geographic’s in the house…Hmm…). From the little research I have done, W.F. & probably Carrie were very involved in the beginnings of the Miami community. Hope you enjoyed your trip to Miami!

Pamela said...

Wow! What an interesting story! Thanks so much for commenting. This is one of the most beautiful and memorable graves I have ever seen. W.F.'s tribute to his wife is breathtaking! said...

So glad to hear the good remarks about Miami City Cemetery. We've been restoring it to a botanical garden for 15 years.

Penny Lambeth, Chair
City Cemetery Restoration Committee
3/14/2014 said...

Further on Carrie Miller. Her husband died broke and is buried in an unmarked grave beside her tomb.

If you're interested in the cemetery, please consider joining our committee.

Penny Lambeth

Anonymous said...

The grave is really famous. When I planned my trip to Miami in November, people told me that I should go and see the grave. It is part of the "insider hints on Miami". I was there yesterday.

It is also a geocache. See

for more details.


Adrian from Switzerland