Pet Cemetery Asks for Help

By Carol Arnett

Many Florissant residents may not be aware of one of the city’s most unique historic sites.

Behind businesses on Lindbergh, near the busy intersection with Charbonier, over 10,000 pets enjoy eternal rest at Imperial Crown Pet Cemetery.

The cemetery was founded in 1924 by Dr. Charles Bauer, a veterinarian whose clinic was nearby. It is the only pet cemetery in North County. In 2002, the cemetery was officially made a Florissant Historical Landmark by the Florissant City Council. It is the oldest pet cemetery in the St. Louis area.

In 1991, the Friends of Imperial Crown Pet Cemetery bought the cemetery. It has been managed since then by Rose Darnell.

The 2.6 acre cemetery shares a parking lot with Batteries Plus on Lindbergh. It stretches back towards apartments on Rosetta Drive. The Friend of Imperial Crown Pet Cemetery recently purchased an additional two acres to the south of the property in hopes of expanding. The two acres are landlocked, with access only through the cemetery or other adjoining businesses.

The existing cemetery is zoned residential. It was grandfathered in as a special use when the city was incorporated. The additional two acres is also zoned residential. Darnell has come before the city with a request to expand the special use permit to the new property.

The city’s Planning and Zoning Commission (P and Z) recommended that the zoning be continued. The matter then had to go to the city council.

The council discussed the matter at the July 9 meeting. At issue is allowing the special use permit in a residential zoning. Some council members do not want special use permits in residential zoning. Another option would be to rezone the property to a commercial zoning, but some council members opposed that idea.

Darnell and the Friends of Imperial Crown Pet Cemetery are asking supporters to let the council know if they want the expansion to go forward. She asks that supporter either contact the city clerk, the mayor, or their council member.

The council will take up that matter at the July 23 meeting.

“I didn’t know that I should ask people to come to the council meetings and write to the city,” Darnell said. “Now I do, and I’m asking people to come out on Monday night, July 23 at 7 to city hall to support the cemetery.”

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