May 5, 1880 Hartford Hartford County Connecticut, USA
Aug. 5, 1950 San Francisco San Francisco County California, USA
Arthur F. Edwards, Sr., one of the pioneers of the community mausoleum plan, and founder and architect of Sunset Mausoleum (Berkeley-Kensington, California). He spent the greater part of his life since his school days in California. He was schooled in Hartford and became a licensed architect in St. Louis at the age of 26. He migrated to San Francisco in 1907 in order to provide and place the marble work in the then new Palace Hotel building. He became the owner of the American Marble Company, which was for many years the largest marble company on the West Coast, and as such owner, he created many innovations in the marble industry which have subsequently become common practice. From the time of his retirement in 1945 he devoted his time exclusively to the development of architectural design for Sunset Mausoleum. Mr. Edwards financed Sunset Mausoleum through his own private capital accumulations from the marble business, and at the time of his death was the sole owner of this beautiful memorial. During his lifetime, he gained no personal profit from the mausoleum, and it may be said that the creation and building of Sunset Mausoleum was his contribution to the community in which it stands. As a recognized expert in the field of building construction and marble decoration, he was particularly fitted for the work he had undertaken. The design of the massive cornice work throughout the building, and the seamless columns of marble speak eloquently of the genius of this construction man. Contractors planning mausoleums from all over the United States have visited Sunset and have paid silent tribute to the design and construction of the building by incorporating into their own buildings many of the invaluable construction methods initiated here by Mr. Edwards. The American Marble Company has furnished and set in place the marble in the majority of the great buildings of the West, and in a great number of mausoleums and buildings throughout America. Before the plans and specifications of Sunset Mausoleum were commenced, Mr. Edwards made an exhaustive study of the mausoleums of this country and of Europe, an d incorporated the best of all of these buildings into Sunset, and this, in addition to his own inventive genius, resulted in the magnificent structure now in existence. The marble in all parts of the building has been artistically and skillfully matched, and has been cut and polished to attain a kaleidoscopic effect in variegated patterns to the end that each section of the building produces its own symmetrical and beautiful design. Mr. Edwards and his wife, Ethel Grace Edwards, are entombed in a private room leading from Stair Terrace. Their room closely adjoins the office of the late President of Sunset where he spent many, many hours planning for the future of his great work. (reprinted from a deluxe booklet given out by the mausoleum in the 1940-60's).