Today, I shall take you on a new trip. We shall walk near a park in Bucharest or better said in the park. Where we will stop, it is actually in the park. It is a place where dead it is all over… you will think it is a cemetery perhaps… and you won’t really be wrong. We will visit the Crematory Cenusa or, better said, Crematory Ash in English.
So grab my hand and let’s enjoy the walk… don’t get scared you are with me. While we walk, I shall tell you a bit about what you will see.
From outside, the building looks quite lovely, as you may see… but as we get closer, you will see that the years that passed were not so merciful. The construction was made in an eclectic style, with elements of Byzantine inspiration, Syrian and Egyptian. The building resembles a lot with a tomb from Bellu cemetery- the tomb of the Cantacuzino family.
Outside the building, we will see two statues that flank the stairs. On one side is pain. On the other side is hope. So when you enter this place, you will experience both the pain and the hope, depending on what you are here for, preferably like us, just for a walk and not get burnt and then placed in an urn.
So about the building construction, the construction starts in 1925 and it will be almost finished in 1927, one year later it will be inaugurated. The day of the inauguration is 25 January 1928, and the first person who was made to ash was a woman .. a simple woman, age 40, her name was Profira Fieraru. Over the years, many personalities will be burned and put in an urn and kept here. It seems even one of my favorite theatre writers was burnt here.
I have to tell you that church was from the start against this place. The Orthodox Church disagrees with this way of passing into eternity. If you chose this way, no priest shall come to your funeral or attend later on when you want to commemorate your dead one.
Priests were advised to tell people about this so they could choose to know.
Over the years, there were rumors that under the crematory is a tunnel, or it hides the entrance to an old tunnel. So old that it was used even by Vlad the Impaler that means around 15 century.. so ancient tunnel. Some say that it is also used the tunnel as a military objective. Those rumors were sustained because no photos were allowed to be taken.
The crematory had some issues over the years. The earthquakes did affect the building, so the crematory couldn’t put the filters to the chimney. So in 2002, the crematory was closed. But the dead ones remained there .. the relatives of the dead ones will have to pay an annual fee for maintaining their dead ones there.
A few years after the closing, the crematory will be declared a historical monument, which means the building will remain standing.
So I hope you enjoyed my little story about this place, full of dead ones. It would be interesting that while we walk to listen to their stories, we walk with some of the dead ones. They would probably have exciting things to say, but until they( the dead ones) decided to join us in this walk, let’s enjoy it.