Gothic Gate and Waiting Station

Crown Hill Cemetery’s original mail entrance stood on what is now Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Street. Built by John Pattison at a cost of $2,300, it consisted of a main central gate flanked by two narrower gates. It was opened on July 30, 1864, replaced in 1900, and razed in 1901. Its replacement, which stood at the southwest corner of the cemetery, featured a Bedford limestone archway designed by Indianapolis architect Herbert Foltz. This entrance was closed in 1965 and demolished the following year.

The current main entrance to the Crown Hill’s South Grounds is located at the intersection of 34th Street and Boulevard Place. In Crown Hill’s early days, 34th Street was a tree-shaded lane connecting the cemetery to the Westfield Pike (now Illinois Street). Today’s main entrance was designed by Indianapolis architect Adolph Scherrer and completed just in time for the funeral procession of Vice President Thomas A. Hendricks on November 30, 1885. It includes a triple-arched stone gate and the Waiting Station, which replaced a small caretaker’s cottage built in 1864. Originally the cemetery’s administrative office, the Waiting Station is a stone-trimmed brick structure with decorative encased tile. Its interior is decorated with intricately carved oak and cherry woodwork.

Historic Landmarks of Indiana restored the Waiting Station between 1970 and 1971, after which it served as their offices until 1990. By 1996, the Waiting Station had been returned to Crown Hill’s use. It underwent renewed restoration in 2001.

Next to the main entrance archway stands a sentry house, designed by the architectural firm of Vonnegut and Bohn and added in 1904. Its second floor originally included a residential area.

Gothic Gate and Waiting Station


  • The Waiting Station’s wooden venetian blinds are among the first installed in the country.
  • The Life Center, a grief counseling organization, used the station as a headquarters in the early 1900s.
  • The Waiting Station served as Historic Landmarks of Indiana’s office until 1990.