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Built in 1897 by British architect Bernard J. Cahill for the Odd Fellows' cemetery, San Francisco's Columbarium is the only active non-denominational cemetery for cremated remains in San Francisco and the last of its kind still in use in this country. The building was abandoned in 1934 and lay dormant until 1979 when it was rescued and restored by the Neptune Society.
It is the largest repository for ashes in the Western U.S. It survived both the 1906 earthquake and the 1937 ordinance outlawing cemeteries. The copper dome, looming over 3 acres of gardens, encloses inlaid marble floors, stained glass windows, tiered circular balconies and ceiling mosaics. The Columbarium features a collection of unusual urns and caskets, including the infamous cookie jar urn. It has remarkable acoustics and hosts concerts and civic events. Free tours are available.