Located at the western end of Ivy Street, the Laurel Cemetery was established in 1886. Comprised of 10 acres, the cemetery gained its name from the local wild mountain laurel bush. The property was originally purchased for “one dollar US gold coin” from the Temecula Land & Water Company by pioneering civic-minded residents of Murrieta. Picnics were held, with the community coming together to help with care of markers and upkeep of the grounds.
In 1938, the “cemetery” became the Murrieta Valley Cemetery District. By virtue of being a special district of Riverside County, a portion of property taxes helps to fund the District. This allows residents the opportunity to be buried at a lesser cost than at a private cemetery.
Laurel Cemetery, also known as Murrieta Cemetery, offers traditional in-ground casket burials, double-depth casket burials, cremation burials, and most recently, a niche columbarium. The cemetery’s “iconic” gates are open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and the on-site office is open from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday. The walk-in gate (located to the right side of the drive-thru gates) is open 24 hours every day for visitors.
The District would like to extend its sincerest thanks to Michael and Ashley Bigay for their time and effort in compiling the photograhs used throughout this website.