Calvary Cemetery - Blair County's most beautiful cemetery




(814) 944-9656
Mon-Fri 9am-5pm
Sat 9am-1pm


Our History


Calvary Cemetery is established


Calvary Cemetery Association of Altoona was established in 1893 by Right Rev. Richard Phelan, Bishop of Pittsburgh, Rev. N. J. O’Reilly, Pastor of St. Mark’s, and Rev. T. P. Smith, Pastor of Sacred Heart, and 12 of the most influential and respected Catholic laymen of their time: John O’Toole, John McNevin, Matthew Dunn, P.R. Halton, Bernard Kelly, John O’Neill, John Halton, R.S. Ball, James Tiernan, A.J. Mills, John J. Hendrick and James Wyrough. When St. Leo’s and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel were created, they were included in representation on the Board of Managers.

St. John’s Cemetery deeded to Calvary Cemetery, following the incorporation of Calvary in 1893, Right Rev. Richard Phelan, Trustee for St. John’s Church (now, Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament) conveyed title of St. John’s Cemetery to Calvary Cemetery, which has since managed and maintained it.


Calvary gifts land for BGHS


In 1920, the cemetery granted a 100' right of way to the commonwealth of PA to build Rte 200 (currently Pleasant Valley Boulevard). This severed approximately 16 acres from the rest of the cemetery. Although many lucrative offers were received for this budding property, no sale was ever made. Calvary superintendent, Dennis O’Leary suggested that the ground be used for a catholic nursing home or high school. Bishop Richard T. Guilfoyle accepted the field for what is now Bishop Guilfoyle High School. No money or any consideration was conveyed to Calvary Cemetery Association for the very valuable tract of land on which Bishop Guilfoyle High School stands today.


Calvary Cemetery is modernized and opens to serve All Faiths


The original charter of Calvary Cemetery, set forth to operate a public cemetery with sections reserved for the burial of Catholic’s, entitled for burial under the regulations of the Roman Catholic Church. However, in 1989, Bishop Joseph P. Adamec declared that Calvary Cemetery is not, nor ever was, officially part of the Altoona Johnstown Diocese. Facing the ever increasing financial challenges of maintaining over 45 acres of ground, Calvary opted to become a progressive, modern cemetery and to secure new lot owners by opening its grounds to serve All-Faiths. Even without the endorsement of the church, the majority of burials each year at Calvary Cemetery continue to come from the catholic community.


Throughout the 1970s, '80s and '90s, a “Pre-Need” sales program was developed, accounting and record keeping was computerized, mausoleum complexes erected, new ground sections were developed and related products and services were offered for sale. The new millennium is an exciting time for Calvary Cemetery. Five new ground sections have been developed and mausoleum additions erected! The Board of Directors is still firmly dedicated, as in the past 100 years, to keeping Calvary Cemetery an exceptionally well-maintained eternal resting place!




Calvary Cemetery


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Monday-Friday 9AM-5PM

Saturday 9AM-1PM


Calvary Cemetery - Blair County's most beautiful cemetery


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2417 Pleasant Valley Boulevard, Altoona, PA 16602

Phone: (814) 944-9656
Hours: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm • Sat 9am-1pm

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