Since 1840, the Pascual Marquez Family Cemetery has been the final resting place for family and friends on the Marquez family. Nestled between multimillion-dollar houses, the cemetery is a hidden gem in Santa Monica Canyon in Los Angeles, California.
The cemetery was created on Rancho Boca de Santa Monica, a Mexican land grant awarded to Pascual Marquez and Ysidro Reyes in 1839. The Rancho was a day’s trip in a carreta, pulled by oxen, or on horseback, from the nearest Catholic cemeteries at the San Gabriel Mission and the Plaza Church in Los Angeles. The distance made funerals and burials a said burden for the entire family. To alleviate this difficulty, Francisco Marquez set aside a portion of land within view of his adobe house for a cemetery.
Although no formal records have been kept, it is believed that there are about 50 burials filling its 1/3 acre space. The cemetery is surrounded by an adobe wall, built in 1926 by renowned architect John Byers.
The Pascual Marquez Family Cemetery has been owned and cared for by the Marquez family for over 175 years. It is likely the oldest privately owned cemetery in California.