Santa Maria Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery, San Juan, Puerto Rico | CruiseBe
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Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery

History and museums
cemetery, memorial

Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery is a colonial-era cemetery located in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. It is the final resting place of many of Puerto Rico's most prominent natives and residents. Construction began in 1863 under the auspices of Ignacio Mascaro. The cemetery is located outside the walls of Fort San Felipe del Morro fortress, one of the island's most famous landmarks. The average height of the wall is 40 feet and the width ranges from 15 to 20 feet. It was named in honor of Saint Maria Magdalena de Pazzi.

According to Rafael Rodríguez, Chaplain and director of pastoral services at the Universidad del Sagrado Corazón located in the Santurce district of the capital, the location of the cemetery is central to the Puerto Rican belief in the separation of death and life. The colonial Spanish government at the time construction of the cemetery commenced, viewed death with fear because it was a mystery. Therefore, they decided to build the cemetery to overlook the Atlantic Ocean to symbolize the spirit's journey to cross over to the afterlife.

Notable interments

  • Aurora de Albornoz, scholar, poet
  • Tite Curet Alonso, composer
  • José Julián Acosta, abolitionist, journalist
  • Ricardo Alegría, father of modern Puerto Rican archaeology
  • Miguel Ángel Álvarez, journalist, comedian and actor
  • Jose Celso Barbosa, founder of the Puerto Rican statehood movement
  • Antonio R. Barceló, lawyer, businessman and politician
  • Salvador Brau, journalist, poet and historian
  • Pedro Albizu Campos, nationalist leader and politician
  • Norma Candal, actress
  • Gilberto Concepción de Gracia, politician, founder of the Puerto Rican Independence Party
  • Rafael Cordero, known as "The Father of Public Education in Puerto Rico".
  • Tony Croatto, Italian-Puerto Rican folk singer, composer and television presenter
  • Conchita Dapena, first wife of Governor Roberto Sánchez Vilella
  • José de Diego, poet, lawyer and liberal politician
  • José Ferrer, Academy Award-winning actor and director
  • Pedro Flores, composer
  • José Gautier Benítez, poet
  • Rafael Hernández, composer and musician
  • Santiago Iglesias, former Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico
  • Tito Lara, composer and musician
  • Lolita Lebron, nationalist leader
  • Muna Lee, American writer and first wife of Luis Muñoz Marín
  • Gilberto Monroig, singer
  • Samuel R. Quiñones, politician, founder of the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party
  • Félix Benítez Rexach, Architect and engineer
  • Evaristo Ribera Chevremont, Poet
  • Ramón Rivero (Diplo), Considered Puerto Rico's most important and influential actor/comedian.
  • Ángel Rivero Méndez, Soldier, writer, journalist and a businessman who is credited with inventing the "Kola Champagne"
  • Pedro Salinas, Spanish poet
  • Miguel Ángel Suárez, actor
  • Rafael Tufiño, painter and graphic artist
  • Salvador Tió Montes de Oca, writer, poet, journalist

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