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Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill

Calvary Cemetery & Chapel Mausoleum is the Roman Catholic cemetery at 2398 Marlton Pike West (State Highway, Route 70 West) in Cherry Hill, Camden County, New Jersey, 08002. Among the graves there are many from the former Italian colony in the City of Camden.

Overview map of Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 18 KB Crucifix, Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 27 KB Office hours, Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 28 KB

On the map below are marked the graves of some of the family and friends of Giovanni Valente and Nunziata DiRenzo, spouses of Gambatesa, Molise, Italy, and Camden, New Jersey. It is based on the cemetery's old visitors map; the map is not drawn to scale.

The front entrance to the cemetery is on the west-bound side of Route 70, the divided highway which runs along the bottom of the drawing. Separating the cemetery from the highway is a stone wall surmounted by a iron fence. There is an iron gateway, beyond which is a very large Crucifix; this is the main entrance to the cemetery.

The left cemetery map was sketched by H.R. McHale in 1969. The right map, showing block and lot numbers, is currently (2019-2020) in use by the cemetery office.

Plan of Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, New Jersey, 31 KB Block and lot plan of Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, New Jersey, 33 KB

On some maps Route 70 is called Marlton Pike, the highway from the City of Camden to the town of Marlton, New Jersey, to the city's east. (Marlton is named after its clay soil or marl.) At its northeast end, Hampton Road intersects with Cuthbert Boulevard, which overpasses both Route 38 and Route 70 near that point.

Almost all the gravestones in the cemetery face away from Route 70, and "Block" numbers (and "Range" letters) are counted in the direction moving away from Route 70.

Calvary Cemetery's Open and Closing Hours

Open and closing Hours, Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 20 KB

The cemetery is open from dawn to dusk, and the mausoleum is open from 9 A.M. to 3:30 P.M. The hours are the same all seven days of the week. The cemetery office is open Monday to Friday from 8 A.M. to 4 P.M. except on holidays and holy days, and the telephone number is 1-856-663-3345.


The Graves of some of the Family and Friends of Giovanni Valente and Nunziata DiRenzo

Louis Valente photograph, Calvary Cemetery, 14 KB Valente family gravestone in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 26 KB

(1) Section D, Range AA, Plot 14
    • Giovanni Valente (1887-1969)
    • Nunziata DiRenzo (1897-1983)
    • Louis Valente (1919-1950)
    • Joseph Valente (1923-1986)

To find this grave, begin at the corner nearest the circle and count A to Z; the next row is AA, i.e. the 27th row. There is a photograph of Louis Valente on the gravestone.

Luigi DiRenzo's gravestone, Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 23 KB

(2) Section A
    • Luigi DiRenzo (1895-1912)

This gravestone is flat; it is not the original, which broke and fell. Maria Rosaria DiRenzo had this replacement made. The date of birth on the gravestone, 13 December 1895, is incorrect; according the Italian Civil Register, Luigi was born on 16 December 1895. He drowned swimming in the Delaware River three months after sailing to America.

The gravestone is easily obscured by grass and fallen leaves; it can be hard to find. Beginning at the corner of Section A nearest to Section B, the grave is between the second and third trees. Luigi DiRenzo's gravestone is the first in its row, but it is not right beside the road. Directly across from Luigi's grave, in Section AA the first gravestone reads JONES (Willard R. 1886- Julia R. 1886-1948).

(3) Section AA
    • Giuseppe Iacovelli (1895-1929)
    • Nicola Iacovelli (1924-1931)
    • Pasqualina DiRenzo (1902-1981)

This is a large gravestone with large stone flowerpots on either side of it, and its inscription begins ERETTO DALLA MOGLIE / IN MEMORIA DI / GIUSEPPE IACOVELLI. On the Section AA side of the Iacovelli gravestone, the first gravestone in the row is "BENNETT" (On the Section A side, the first gravestones are flat in the ground).

(4) Section AA
    • Donato Valente (1885-1965)

This is a large and easy to find gravestone; the name Valente is carved on both sides. On the Section M side of the grave, the first gravestone in the row is "KENNEY". The site is shared by Donato's first wife. The gravestone of Donato's second wife is next to her husband's gravestone, to the west.

(5) Section E
    • Assunta DiRenzo (1905-1957)
    • Pasquale Verderosa (1900-1969)

This gravestone is about five rows closer to Route 70 than Assunta's parents' grave (No. 8 below), in a line across the road with the gravestone of Giuseppe Iacovelli (No. 6 below). On the Section D side of the Verderosa grave, the first gravestone in the row is "PLAWA"; on the Section E side it is "CAPRICE". There is a well-preserved photograph of Assunta on the gravestone.

(6) Section Old E
    • Grace Fanelli (1899-1996)
    • Giuseppe Iacovelli (1891-1940)

There are two gravestones, and they are not in the same row. Grace is buried at the foot of her husband, about one grave to the west. The gravestone of Giuseppe Iacovelli (5 June 1891 - 23 April 23 1940) is the 5th gravestone from the road; the first gravestone in the row is "NEC". There is a well-preserved photograph of Giuseppe on the gravestone. The gravestone of Grace Iacovelli (29 June 1899 - 10 March 1996) is the 8th gravestone from the road; the first gravestone in the row is "MESCHINI". Their son John Iacovelli (1924-2003) is buried in the cemetery's Section K (6a).

(7) Section M, Block 22, Lot 6
    • Carmina "Millie" Valente (1921-1998)
    • Esther Valente (1930-1994)
    • Angeline (Valente) Jordan (1928-2013)

These are individual graves, lying side by side in a row. Because all the graves in this section are flat in the ground, the gravestones may be quite difficult to find.

Cross standing gravestone, Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 6 KB

Across from the graves in Section B there is a large rough hewn cross with Christ's face inscribed in the crossing; the name on the gravestone is "CASINI". This is about one row closer to Route 70 than the Valente graves. (There used to be very young tree one row beyond the Valente graves, but it died and was not replaced.)

The grave of their first cousin Philomena (Iacovelli) Mazzarella (1926-2012) lies in Section M just beside the roadway, one row closer to Route 70 than her cousins' graves: Section M, Block 21, Lot 6

(8) Old Section E, Block M
    • Giuseppe DiRenzo (1876-1943)
    • Maria Vittoria d'Alessandro (1874-1955)

Giuseppe and Vittoria DiRenzo's gravestone in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 21 KB

This is a single gravestone with two well-preserved photographs. Giuseppe is named "Joseph" on the gravestone. The grave is about 16 gravestones in from the road; the first stone in the row says "HUSBAND / THEODORE F. BERGERSON / 1889 † 1942".

(9) Old Section E, Block TT, Lot 18
    • Bartolomeo d'Alessandro (1886-1953)
    • Anna Mozzo (1894-1985)

Aunt Annie, Camden, 7 KB

To find this grave, start at the private mausoleums, walk to Old Section E (nearest the cemetery's western fence), where there are two, formerly three, trees in a row. Walk toward Route 70 from the trees and count 4 rows (not including the row the trees are in). The gravestone is brownish-pink, but of the same size and shape as Nunziata DiRenzo's parents' gravestone. It is the 17th gravestone in from the road, about midway to the fence; the first gravestone in the row says "LOCANTORE".

There is a photograph only of Bartolomeo d'Alessandro on the gravestone, but it is "unreadable" because of weather damage; not much more than the forehead can be seen.

(10) Old Section E, Block NN, Lot 15
    • Donato Mastrobuono (1889-1968)
    • Maria Vittoria Andreola (1887-1960)

This grave is in the Section E closest to the fence. The first gravestone in row NN says "BORREGGINE". There is a photograph of Maria Vittoria on the stone, but not of Donato.

Donato Mastrobuono of Gambatesa was the godfather of Giovanni Valente and Nunziata DiRenzo's oldest son, Nicola Natale. Donato Mastrobuono and Giovanni Valente were very good friends. Maria Vittoria Andreola was also from Gambatesa.

(11) Section E, Private Mausoleum
     • Carmela Davanti (wife, 20 January 1890 - 28 December 1977)
     • Michele Fanelli (husband, 1 December 1888 - 7 March 1963)

This mausoleum is in Section [New] E, the first private mausoleum on the Section Old E side of Section E. Carved above the portal is the name M. FANELLI. See St. Joseph's Day in Camden.

(12) Section K, Block 17, Lot 15
     • Gennaro Macchiarola (1924-1985)
     • Marie (Valente) Macchiarola (1931-2013)
     • Pina Marie (Macchiarola) Di Salvatore (1962-2017)

This is a flat gravestone. Look for the sidewalk that leads into the entry way between the old and new Mausoleum buildings. The Macchiarola gravestone is in line with the end of the original red-stone building. It is the third gravestone from the curb.

Antonio Mecca, Section K, Private Mausoleum Calvary Cemetery photograph, 10 KB

13. Section K, Private Mausoleum
      Antonio Mecca

That may (or may not) be the photograph of Antonio Mecca, the Camden undertaker, on the Mecca family mausoleum, but no one now remembers. Begin at the cross near Route 70, continue past the circle, and on the first mausoleum on the right (Section K), on the right hand side of the doorway there may (or may not) be a photograph of Antonio Mecca and his wife. (Antonio Mecca was the first witness to Donato Valente's Petition for Naturalization, 14 May 1914, when Antonio Mecca's address was recorded as 819 South 4th Street, Camden, New Jersey.)

14. Mausoleum (old). Salvatore Siniscalco (1896-1970)

Dr Salvatore Siniscalco and his wife Elizabeth's vault in the Mausoleum chapel, 20 KB

The vault of Dr Siniscalco, one of the two doctors to the Valente family in Camden, is in the original mausoleum building. If you are facing the altar therein, then look on the wall across from the altar along the right side aisle. The Siniscalco vault is there: Salvatore's wife Elizabeth (1905-1989) shares this vault with her husband.

(15) Section M
     • Diana T. DiRenzo (28 November 1943 - 13 July 2016)

This is a flat gravestone. It is in the second row away from Route 70 of Section M, almost at the end of the far end of the row. Diane was the daughter of Antonio DiRenzo (1910-1987) and Hilda (Ciccarelli) DiRenzo (1910-1993). She was youngest of the nieces and nephews of Giovanni and Nunziata (DiRenzo) Valente, (1) above.

(16) Section M
     • Angiolina A. DiRenzo (13 August 1936 - 4 October 2018)

This is a flat gravestone, five rows closer to Route 70 than her cousin Esther Valente's grave (7). Angiolina was Diane DiRenzo's (15) second oldest sister. They were the daughters of Anthony (1910-1987) and Hilda (née Ciccarelli, 1910-1993) DiRenzo whose graves are in Section J, very near the very large statue of the Lord, in the second row in front of and about six graves to the left of the statue.


A few historical notes

In the area in front of the cemetery, beyond the cemetery gate, that is now under Marlton Pike (Route 70), unbaptized babies were buried. This includes the twin sister Dora, of Maria (Valente) Macchiarola (no. 12).

There are or were separate sections of the cemetery, as marked on the map, for mixed marriage, babies and singles, and singles. When or if this separation, at least in the case of babies ended, I don't know. However, my own parents' graves lie side by side in Section M, and theirs was a mixed marriage, i.e. one between a Catholic and a non-Catholic.

Vittoria Valente said that during the Depression when people had nothing, visitors would leave a dollar to help the family pay for the funeral. One family in Camden was so poor that they buried their baby in a macaroni box. Viewings used to be held at home in the old days, and you had to pay a dollar if you wanted to go to the cemetery, from Camden to Calvary Cemetery; the funeral director would supply the cars, and the family would have a record of who had paid.

For Veterans Day the cemetery allows flags to be placed on the graves from one week before the 11th of November to one week afterwards. Then the flags are removed.

Parisi family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 23 KB Citeroni family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 23 KB Wilson family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 20 KB Wilson family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 24 KB
Daly family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 22 KB Locilento family statue in Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 17 KB

Sacred Heart Drive, Calvary Cemetery, 32 KB Reginelli mausoleum, Calvary Cemetery, 44 KB

The sycamore-lined Sacred Heart Drive between Sections D and Old D, near the end of which is the Valente family grave. The mausoleum of a well-known Camden man. (13 June 2016)

Ciacoboni grave statue, mourner at the Cross, 13 September 2019, in Section C of Calvary Cemetery, 22 KB Ciacoboni grave statue, mourner at the Cross, 13 September 2019, in Section C of Calvary Cemetery, 27 KB Ciacoboni grave statue, mourner at the Cross, 13 September 2019, in Section C of Calvary Cemetery, 21 KB

(Scherza coi fanti e lascia stare i santi ...)

Costantino gravestone, 21 September 2019, in Section E of Calvary Cemetery, Cherry Hill, 42 KB


The URL of this Web page: https://www.roangelo.net/valente/calvary.html
Last revised: 5 June 2016 : 2016-06-05 by Robert [Wesley] Angelo.

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