Cemetery or Memorial

Site Type curated by: The African American Historic Sites Database Team

Cemeteries & Memorials in Virginia

Locations for Site Type

Historical Significance The African American Heritage Park opened in 1995 as a satellite of the Alexandria Black History Resource Center, located at 638 Alfred St. The memorial sculptures in the park are the creation of Washington, D.C. sculptor…

Historical Significance More than 229 black Civil War soldiers are buried in Alexandria National Cemetery. Originally named Soldiers' Cemetery, the graveyard is one of several national cemeteries built in 1862 to accommodate the war dead.…

Historical Significance African American soldiers who served in the 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War (portrayed in the movie "Glory") are buried in Arlington National Cemetery in and around Section 27. More than…

Historical Significance Arthur Ashe (14 July 1943 - 6 February 1993), a Richmond native, came of age during a time when segregation was standard in Virginia daily life. As a youth, Ashe was barred from playing tennis at the city's segregated public…

Historical Significance The Black Baptist Cemetery--now part of the African American Heritage Park-- was created in 1885 by the Silver Leaf ("Colored") Society of Alexandria, one of the many burial associations formed by African Americans in the…

Historical Significance The Burris Cemetery lay behind the Burris family house in Eastville. Many years ago this area was called Burristown. The house was built in the 1860's by Reverend Caleb James Burris, the first black ordained minister on the…

Historical Significance The health of the destitute "contrabands" - southern slaves liberated by Union forces during the Civil War - who poured into Alexandria starting in 1861 was precarious. By 1864 at least 1,200 individuals had died, taxing the…

Historical Significance In 1873 the Daughters of Zion, an all female African-American society, created a two-acre independent plot across from the Oakwood Cemetery (the second oldest public cemetery in Charlottesville). The Daughters of Zion Cemetery…

Historical Significance Fairview Cemetery was founded in 1869 by Mount Zion Baptist Church and Augusta Street United Methodist Church. In the mid-19th century the cemetery was located outside of the Staunton City limits in the heart of an…

Historical Significance Thousands of African Americans who died in Portsmouth throughout the 19th century and until 1960 are buried in Fisher's Hill Cemetery, including I.C. Norcom, Jeffry Wilson, Ida Barbour, and many others whose impact on the…

Historical Significance In the mid-19th century a stone obelisk was erected to memorialize the heroism of Frank Padget, an enslaved man who lost his life during a rescue effort of some 40 people following the worst accident ever to occur on the…

Historical Significance The nine-acre Freedman's Cemetery was established in Danville in the 1870's for formerly enslaved and free African Americans. It is located behind the Danville National Cemetery, burial ground for Union soldiers who perished…

Historical Significance In 1806, white slave owner Abel West freed all of his slaves by deed. In his 1816 will, West left these freed slaves two hundred acres in Boston, on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. The land was given to them and their heirs to…

Historical Significance The Old City Cemetery, originally referred to as the Methodist Cemetery, was established as a public burial ground in 1806. The land was donated by John Lynch and today contains over 20,000 gravesites. The Old City Cemetery…

Historical Significance Petersburg's cemeteries were segregated by race and religion. In 1815, the Petersburg Beneficial Society of Free Men of Color was established to support its free black members in times of sickness and in death. Beneficial…

Historical Significance The Reynolds Homestead is the former Rock Spring Plantation House, the birthplace and boyhood home of tobacco manufacturer R.J. Reynolds. Built in 1843, the two-story brick home has been restored to its nineteenth century…

Historical Significance The Samuel Bibbins Cemetery is one of the oldest known African-American cemeteries in Northampton County. Samuel Bibbins purchased property from George W. Brittingham in 1851. The first recorded burial in the cemetery…

Historical Significance Started in 1853, the Stanton family cemetery in rural Buckingham County is one of the state's few surviving burying grounds established by free blacks before the Civil War and held by the same family to the present. The…

Historical Significance Tinner Hill, site of the first rural chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), is named for Charles and Mary Tinner, an African-American couple who bought land there in the late 1800s.…