Forest Hill Mausoleum

Project Details

  • Location

    • 1 Speedway Rd.
      Madison, WI 53705
  • Project Type

  • Status

  • Alder District

    District 13
  • Contract Number

Project Information


This historic limestone building was originally built in 1916 by the Illinois Mausoleum Company. It originally contained 318 crypts.  Initially a private corporation, the mausoleum is now owned and operated by the City of Madison.
There have been two additions to the mausoleum. It is uncertain when these additions were completed.

  • A 295 crypts addition was installed along the west and north elevation of the original mausoleum.  This addition was estimated to have occurred during the mid to late sixties.
  • A crematorium was added to the east elevation but it is no longer in service and the area now primarily serves as storage.  

A ballasted EPDM roof appears to have been installed on the original mausoleum in the fall of 1992 and is approaching the end of its useful life and is showing severe signs of tenting at the parapet walls.  It is assumed that a fully adhered EPDM single-ply roof was also installed to the crematorium at this time.  Maintenance to the building envelope has been minimal and now shows signs of masonry distress with failing mortar joints and some fractured stones. Almost all masonry joints on the original structure require repointing.


  • The existing roof has been replaced with a black 90 mil EPDM roofing system with a 30 year warranty.
  • A new expansion joint has been installed between the garden crypts and the original mausoleum. (This was determined to be the cause of some of the masonry failure along the parapet wall’s perimeter.
  • The exterior of the building has been cleaned removing heavy staining from dirt and organic deposits.
  • The parapet wall has be partially rebuilt and several deteriorated stones have been replaced with new. New flashing has been installed to provide better drainage.
  • The existing storm windows have been replaced allowing the interior stained glass windows to be visible from the exterior. The existing storm windows were comprised of plastic and were heavily deteriorated due to UV exposure. 
  • The old crematorium addition which was made up of unsightly concrete masonry blocks has been removed allowing the original historic structure to be re-exposed.
  • Passive ventilation has been added to the original wall where it abuts the garden crypts addition. This should will help improve the present  moisture issues and allow proper drying of these walls.
  • This building envelope work has made the building water tight and is now allowing the interior masonry to dry out. This will resolve the interior moisture issues that were present. Due to the temperature sensitivity of the repointing mortar and rapidly approaching cold weather last fall, the remaining repointing work has been suspended until Spring 2017.


  • Complete repointing the exterior walls.
  • Refurbish the front entrance door.
  • Installation of metal roof flashing.
  • Installation of a fluid applied membrane on the flat roofs above the garden crypts.
  • Installation of brick panel systems over the parging at the entrance. This current parging is inappropriate with the historic significance of the mausoleum’s time period.

City User Agency:  Parks Department
Bid Due Date: July 1, 2016
Construction Start Date: August 15, 2016
Expected Completion Date: June 30, 2017

Forest Hill Mausoleum

Forest Hill Mausoleum

Cleaning progress, removing heavy staining from dirt and organic deposits:

FH Mausoleum Cleaning

Parapet wall repair between the original mausoleum and the garden crypts:

FH Mausoleum Parapet

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