A 101-year-old Greek Revival mausoleum in Woodlawn, on Webster Avenue in the Bronx, owned by the Reverend Norman Vincent Peale who wrote “The Power of Positive Thinking,” has hit the market for $750,000, the New York Times reported. The mausoleum is one of three for sale in Woodlawn. It is available for immediate occupancy and sleeps eight, according to Woodlawn Cemetery staff historian Susan Olsen. Peale’s family decided at the last moment to bury him in Pawling, N.Y.
Peale bought the mausoleum in 1956 for $15,000.
In New York, people are willing to pay big bucks for a decent resting place. Mausoleums trade in the same manner as co-ops, the Times said, and with cemeteries filling up fast, officials regularly suggest sales to those who own empty lots.
At Woodlawn, there are more than 1,300 mausoleums.
“Our most famous resale was J.C. Penney,” Olsen said. “He bought his from Mrs. William Randolph Hearst when she bought another used one.”
Leona Helmsley also had the body of her husband exhumed from Woodlawn and moved to the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Westchester County. She donated the mausoleum to the cemetery’s non-profit foundation, but insisted on removing a stained-glass window in the tomb with an edited view of the Manhattan skyline, showing only buildings her husband Harry Helmsley had controlled. [NYT]