Shale Mausoleum, McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery

Without the date 1926 on the front, we might be forgiven for supposing this rustic stone vault to be a relic of the Neolithic era. The date, however, is a bit of a mystery: cemetery records list burials here as early as 1889 (and as recent as 1990). Perhaps 1926 is the date of a major reconstruction of the front, and the stonework to either side is earlier.

This mausoleum once had urns flanking the entrance (probably dating from the 1926 construction, if we accept that some of the stonework is earlier), but only the bases remain. The base on the right-hand side is nearly obliterated by the advancing years. Like many mausoleums in this cemetery, it is half underground; and the slope of the drive in front gives us a good indication of the kind of landscape the architects had to deal with.

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