July 29-30 Graceland Cemetery Tours: Now With Fewer Rich White Guys!
The “Now With Fewer Rich White Guys” Route
Historically, most of the biggest, most impressive monuments in American cemeteries have been built by rich white guys – brewers, lumber merchants, steel barons, and real estate moguls. But there are far more stories at Graceland than just those movers and shakers. Some of those steel barons had daughters who set the city on fire with their scandalous novels, or wives who were attacked as “intolerant abolitionists” by anti-Lincoln newspapers. There are fugitive slaves, underground railroad workers, soldiers, black pioneers, members of the early LGBTQ community, artists, and many more. This route will focus more on them.
Don’t worry; the rich white guys are still in the cemetery and still featured on lots of tours, including ours. The tour guide even hopes to be a rich white guy himself one day! If the concept of the tour upsets you, it is probably not a safe space for you.
Tour guide Adam Selzer is the author of Mysterious Chicago, HH: Holmes: The True History of the White City Devil, and many other Chicago history books. He has been running Graceland tours for years, and is now at work on a new authorized “Who’s Who” book that’s uncovered some incredible new stories. Join him for a 75-90 minute walk through American history! There will be a little overlap between this tour and his standard route (you can’t do a Graceland tour without Inez, and it’s not like he’ll refuse to say who a big, cool monument we pass was built for; there’ll inevitably be SOME rich white guys mentioned) but most of the stories are new for 2019, or contain cool new information that’s never been used on a tour before. It is also Pride month, so we’ll make an effort to include some of the known LGBTQIA-related graves, as well.