Simply, a mausoleum is an above ground building that serves as a final resting place for the deceased. The simplicity of the mausoleum definition, though, belies the breadth of options in mausoleum construction. Community mausoleums, often found within cemeteries, can be quite large to entomb dozens, or even hundreds, of deceased persons. Cemetery mausoleums, abundant in areas of the country with a high water table, may also be small to entomb deceased members of only one family.

Private mausoleums, like those built by families on cemetery grounds, are sometimes built on private property. Often placed in gardens, private mausoleums are a legacy for an individual or generations of a family.

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