The mausoleum was completed in 1808, as the last resting place of the Sutherland-Leveson-Gower family, on the instructions of George Granville Leveson-Gower, 2nd Marquess of Stafford and later the 1st Duke of Sutherland. The architect was Charles Heathcote Tatham. It is considered to be his masterpiece.
Constructed of ashlar blocks in neo-classical style, it is the only Grade I listed building in the city of Stoke on Trent. The interior was lined with marble and there were two alcoves containing a total of 40 catacombs. Only seven were ever used.
The mausoleum became redundant when the family abandoned Trentham in the early 1900s. The seven bodies from the vaults were reburied in the floor of the Mausoleum, adjacent to two graves of family members, who had stipulated burial in the earth. A later burial in 1912 is not marked with a headstone.
Decades of neglect resulted in damage and decay, but ownership is now in the hands of Stoke on Trent City Council. The formation of a Friends of Mausoleum group is underway to help steer the building into use as a community exhibition space.