As one of the first deliberately designed and professionally landscaped rural cemeteries in the United States, Forest Lawn’s first interment took place in 1850. Today there are 162,000+ permanent residents in this 269-acre, not-for-profit cemetery serving all faiths. Listed on the State and National Registries of Historic Places, Forest Lawn is also at the heart of Western New York’s cultural tourism renaissance. Each year, it plays host to thousands of visitors who come to enjoy all that Forest Lawn has to offer: unmatched natural beauty – hills, valleys, lakes and streams; sculptural masterpieces (including the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Blue Sky Mausoleum); living history.
Most importantly, the stories of those who now rest in peace under Forest Lawn’s care - from a U.S. President and foreign royalty, to captains of industry, artists, inventors, veterans from every U.S. conflict since the Revolutionary War and people like us who have quietly built the community that we and our families enjoy -- each has a story to be told through the expansive archives and genealogical resources of the Margaret L. Wendt Archive and Resource Center and through Forest Lawn’s award-winning tours, concerts, lectures and special events.
Forest Lawn, in addition to being a magnificent cemetery, is Buffalo Niagara’s largest arboretum. Its 269 acres are filled with undulated landscape, abundant wildlife and beautiful art and architecture. The original landscape was designed in 1849 by noted cemetery landscape architects Adolph Strauch and Joseph Earnshaw. There are many gardens to view, including the Gratitude Garden in front of the Rosewood Mausoleum, a meditation garden in front of the historic chapel and, of course, the many individual gardens that families maintain.