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Alexandria, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Former USCT Burial Ground

Rather Die Freemen Than Live To Be Slaves

 
 
Former USCT Burial Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 1, 2015
1. Former USCT Burial Ground Marker
Inscription. This corner of the cemetery was probably reserved for members of the U.S. Colored Troops, some of whom were veterans of battles like the siege of Petersburg and the Battle of the Crater. In 1864, a group of USCT convalescing at L'Ouveruture Hospital petitioned for a burial alongside their white comrades-in-arms in the proper soldiers' cemetery. Their request was granted, and the coffins of 118 USCT were relocated in January 1865 to the military burial ground, now Alexandria National Cemetery.

We are not contrabands, but soldiers of the U.S. Army. We have cheerfully left the comforts of home, and entered into the field of conflict, fighting side by side with the white soldiers…

As American citizens, we have a right to fight for the protection of her flag, that right is granted, and we are now sharing equally the dangers and hardships in this mighty contest… We ask that our bodies may find a resting place in the ground designated for the burial of the brave defenders, of our countries flag.


Excerpt from USCT petition to Major Edwin Bentley, Surgeon in Charge, L'Ouverture Hospital, December 27, 1864
 
Location. 38° 47.675′ N, 77° 2.973′ W. Marker is in Alexandria, Virginia. Marker can be reached from the intersection
Former USCT Burial Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 1, 2015
2. Former USCT Burial Ground Marker
of South Washington Street and Church Street, on the right when traveling south. Click for map. In the Contraband and Freedmen Memorial Cemetery. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1001 South Washington Street, Alexandria VA 22314, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Freedmen’s Cemetery (a few steps from this marker); Contrabands and Freedmen Cemetery Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); First Catholic Church in Virginia (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Contrabands and Freedmen Cemetery Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); The Original Saint Mary's Church (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Jones Point (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Lost Village of Cameron at Great Hunting Creek (approx. 0.3 miles away); Battery Rodgers (approx. 0.3 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Alexandria.
 
Categories. African AmericansCemeteries & Burial SitesWar, US Civil
 
Former USCT Burial Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 1, 2015
3. Former USCT Burial Ground Marker
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 433 times since then and 21 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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