Murphy Mausoleum


The design of the Murphy mausoleum, built of sandstone in 1921, has been attributed to Bernard J. S. Cahill (1866-1944), who designed a number of structures at Cypress Lawn. Cahill chose French Gothic, a style of architecture that emerged in 12th and 13th century French Cathedrals. The term “Gothic” was originally intended as an insult by Italian Renaissance artists. Use of the term implied that Medieval cathedrals, when compared to Renaissance buildings, were so crude that so crude that only a Goth could have produced them. The Goths were Germanic barbarians who had sacked Rome in 410 A.D.. The Goths are closely related another barbaric tribe, the “Vandals”.

Charles Conick designed the stained glass windows of this French Gothic mausoleum. Great height is achieved in the beautifully crafted sandstone interior by the use of rib vaults supported on engaged columns.

The Murphy mausoleum is reminiscent of the Chapel of St. Hubert in the city of Amboise, in the Loire Valley in France. The Chapel of St. Hubert was also used as a model for the Belmont mausoleum at Woodlawn cemetery in the Bronx.
Photos and text © Douglas Keister Visit Doug’s Author Page

[address cemetery=”Cypress Lawn Memorial Park” street=”1370 El Camino Real” city=”Colma” state=”California” zip=”94014″]

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