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African Burial Ground National Monument

About this listing

Colonial-era burial ground for African-Americans

Place Details

Borough : Manhattan
Neighborhood : Civic Center
Burial Site, Historic Site & Museum

Place Matters Profile

On the eve of the American Revolution, New York City was second only to Charleston, South Carolina as an urban center of slavery. In 1991, during excavations for a new federal building in Manhattan’s Financial District, a colonial-era burial ground containing the remains of an estimated 15-20,000 Africans was discovered.Today, a memorial commemorates those interred in the African Burial Ground, and a visitor center addresses the history of African-descended people in early New York as well as the struggle to preserve the burial ground itself.

The African Burial Ground Visitor Center, located at 290 Broadway, has been the most visited of all New York City’s National Park Service sites since its opening in February 2010. The memorial—known as the African Burial Ground National Monument—is located just around the corner, at the intersection of Duane and Elk streets. Though the bones of those buried at the African Burial Ground were first...

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Panels, African Burial Ground Visitor’s Center and Memorial. January 29, 2011.

Edward Rothstein. “A Burial Ground and Its Dead are Given Life.” New York Times, February 25, 2010.

Sherrill D. Wilson, Ph.D. “The Rites of Ancestral Return”. Newsletter of the African Burial Ground Project. Fall/Winter 2003.

On The Web

African Burial Ground National Monument


Anonymous Nominator

The nation's earliest known African-American cemetery-- in use by at least 1712--was rediscovered during construction of a federal office building in Lower Manhattan in the late 1980s. A National Historic Landmark & NYC Historic District.

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