Cemeteries

Two cemeteries were important to the African American Community in Trenton.

East Hanover Street Cemetery was the earliest known burial place in the City of Trenton for African-American residents. Located adjacent to the Friends’ Meeting House, the earliest mention of this burial ground is in a 1779 deed for the property. The Religious Society of Free Africans (later Mount Zion A.M.E. Church) assumed responsibility for the graveyard soon after its inception in 1811, and its members were buried here and in the churchyard until around 1860. In that year, the graveyard was sold and a new African-American burial ground, known as Locust Hill Cemetery, was established on Hart Avenue. The Cemetery is no longer extant.

Locust Hill Cemetery was established in 1861 by the Mount Zion A.M.E. Church to replace the East Hanover Street Cemetery, which the community had outgrown. Burial from the earlier cemetery were reportedly disinterred and reburied at Locust Hill. In 1873, the Locust Hill Cemetery Company was incorporated to administer the graveyard. When the Mount Zion A.M.E. Church expanded its sanctuary in 1876, the remains of those buried in the churchyard were moved to Locust Hill Cemetery. The cemetery appears on late nineteenth century maps of Trenton, but by 1910 it appears to have fallen into disuse. A large portion of the property was sold in 1911, and by 1937 the remainder of the cemetery had also been sold.

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