James Cash Penney

J. C. Penney
Birth Name:
James Cash Penney Jr.
Birth Date:
September 16, 1875
Birth Place:
Hamilton, Missouri
Death Date:
February 12, 1971
Place of Death:
Harkness Pavilion, Columbia‐Presbyterian Medical Center, New York, New York
Cause of Death:
Heart failure
Cemetery Name:
Woodlawn Cemetery
Claim to Fame:
Business and Finance
James Cash Penney was an American businessman and entrepreneur who founded the J. C. Penney stores in 1902. The Penney company expanded nationwide, with 120 stores in 1920 (mostly still in the west). By 1924, Penney reported income of more than $1 million annually. The number of stores reached 1,400 by 1929. The large income allowed him to be heavily involved in many philanthropic causes during the 1920s. Most of this work was halted when the stock market crash of 1929 and the Great Depression left Penney in financial ruin. After the crash, Penney lost virtually all of his personal wealth and borrowed against his life insurance policies to help the company meet its payroll. The financial setbacks took a toll on his health, and he checked himself into the Battle Creek Sanitarium for treatment. After hearing the hymn "God Will Take Care of You" (written by Civilla Durfee Martin) being sung at a service in the hospital's chapel, he became a born-again Christian.

Fun Fact

In 1940, during a visit to a store in Des Moines, Iowa, he trained a young Sam Walton (future founder of WalMart) on how to wrap packages with a minimal amount of paper and ribbon.

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

Woodlawn Cemetery

4199 Webster Avenue

Bronx, New York, 10470


North America


Cemetery map of Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, New York.
Cemetery map of Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, New York.

Grave Location:

Pine Plot, Section 135

Grave Location Description

From the Jerome Avenue entrance, turn left on West Border Avenue then right on Chestnut Avenue. Look to your right for the well manicured Penney mausoleum.

Grave Location GPS

40.888966, -73.876839



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