One of the area's oldest Catholic cemeteries was established in 1853 but has been placed under a lock, forever gated until a keymaster appears. One man who has a key to unlock this sacred space during a season associated with ghosts and mystical mishaps of nature's dark side will share tales of our city's earliest members interred there. See the final resting place of those big names that typically adorn our oldest buildings, street signs, and the occasional antique store discovery, including the Campau, Hake, Kortlander, and Clancy families.
Tour GR guests will learn the true story of the Old Iron Cross and Little Sisters of the Poor. As the skies darken, tourists of the cemetery will migrate to the comfortable refuge of the chapel and mausoleum of Father Patrick McManus.
The tour guide will be Jim Winslow, who last month led a group of history fans through the Morton House on his ArtPrize-inspired event connected to the SiTE:LAB exhibition venue. The Morton House would go on to win the 2014 Best Venue ArtPrize award, then was shuttered to the public for a complete renovation.
"I selected this venue because it is not a place easily accessed by the public," says Winslow. "I have a key to the cemetery because I have family buried there. My key also unlocks Fr. Patrick McManus's crypt - a great place to explore as it's just getting dark."
As with every tour, Winslow adds a bit of contemporary spin, with plenty of visuals shown on his iPad to help tie the location to other historical items of our city. Winslow suggests packing a flashlight, warm clothes, and your last will and testament.
Just kidding on packing your will. Seriously, though, if do you scare easily, it might be wise to tidy up your legal documents before you walk in a cemetery bathed in the red hues of the sunset under an advancing twilight.
Admission: $10. Please purchase tour tickets in advance at Tour GR's Event Brite page