October 2, 2007

Whom Is The Famous Person Buried In Cottage Grove?

In a very small plot of land, approximately 150 feet by 300 feet in size, in the early 1980's, in Atkinson Cemetery, Cottage Grove, a monument to the Mars family was erected. Franklin C. Mars, founder of the Mars Candy Corporation [Mars candy bars] is believed to have been buried there. There is a bit of controversy here, when the monument was put in place, a few local newspapers claimed that the founder of Mars Candy was buried here. Though it is believed he was really buried in Lakewood Cemetery in Minneapolis. Evidence of any Mars family members being buried here is not real clear, however according to an undated Platt Map of Atkinson Cemetery, a plot of land was sold to John M. Mars. There are no surviving gravestones containing the name Mars, and many of the Marses listed on the monument are buried in Cottage Grove Cemetery [which I will be paying a visit too shortly]. The Mars family was a very large and prominent family in Cottage Grove and helped shape the community in it's early years.

Tomorrow I'll give additional historic details on the Atkinson Cemetery and a bit more of what is located around it, how it came to be, etc. The Mars grave photos were very tough to photograph, the dark face with the engraved text, if it wasn't at a certain angle, you couldn't read it, thus I split the photo into two sections so the lighting was good for reading.

Additional photos of the cemetery:
- the lower half of the Mars Monument
- additional angles of yesterday's theme day photo

My 3 Daily Photo Favorites:
St Paul, Minnesota
New York, New York
Cleveland, Ohio


R&R said...

And Chicagoans will tell you that he's buried in Chicago ... who knew that he would cause such a fuss in death!

NorthBayPhoto said...

Great shots and tons of information!

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Some really interesting pics. How no idea that Mars Bars were actually named after a man! Thanks for visiting Toruń DP here in Poland. Please come again!

julia said...

There is always a surprise in store! Mars Bars originator there? There is a difference about the stone, in that it list the children too rather than deaths. see ya later.

Kate said...

Cemeteries contain so many interesting people with fascinating stories to tell. I wonder what Wiki will say about him; guess I'd better check.

Chris said...

Very interesting. . . . I was guessing it was a Kellogg that you were going to mention today!

Steve Cuddihy said...

Kellogg! That is a very wise guess.

Steve Cuddihy said...

The plot thickens: looking at wikipedia, they site Newport, MN as his birth location, but they list Chester Springs, Pennsylvania as the location of his death.

However, and I quote:

"Mars moved to Pulaski, Tennessee, where he bought a number of local farms and constructed a large estate called Milky Way Farm."

"Mars lived the remainder of his life on the farm and was buried there upon his death in 1934. However, Mars' wife Ethel V. Mars had the body and the mausoleum moved to Chicago only a few years after his death."

What does this mean? Perhaps this monument is just that, a monument for the Mars family which used to live here [and there are gravestones in the other Cottage Grove cemetery]. Newport is about a five minute drive and very rich in farm land.

The Mars family certainly has my interest as to what, where, when they were here and what was their role for the community.