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Would you visit a pet cemetery? 6 to explore

Sept. 24, 2013, 10:35 a.m.
Presidio Pet Cemetery

Photo: archibald jude/Flickr

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Presidio Pet Cemetery, San Francisco

The Presidio Pet Cemetery in San Francisco is the only place of pet interment that we know of under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service.

Its precise history is unclear due to a lack of documentation, but the 420 homespun grave markers there date back to the 1950s when the vast complex — now a mixed-use mega-park and part of the Golden Gate Recreation Area — was an active military base and home to around 2,000 Army families, many of which had pets.

And although the cemetery has been closed for interment for decades and officials discourage anyone from thinking otherwise, that hasn’t stopped locals from taking advantage of this little spot within a beautiful big park. Clay Harrell, a representative of the Presidio Trust, which oversees historic preservation within the park, told the San Francisco Chronicle: “We don't patrol. If you want to go bury your cat at night, nobody is going to arrest you,” said Harrell.