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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
New York in New York County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground

 
 
Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, October 10, 2011
1. Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground Marker
Inscription.
The rediscovery of the burial ground revealed that Africans and their descendants buried loved ones with dignity and respect in the 17th and 18th centuries. More than 90 percent of the 419 human skeletal remains were rapped in shrouds (cloths) and most of the bodies were buried in the full-sized coffins. Africans continued other traditional practices such as placing pennies over the eyes to keep them closed. Small artifacts like beads, cowry shells and cuff links sometimes accompanied the burials.

Community activists, politicians, and many others fought vehemently to preserve the burial ground and to honor this history and culture. Their efforts led to the designation of the 0.34 acre of the African Burial Ground as a national monument.
 
Erected by National Park Service/U.S. Department of the Interior.
 
Location. 40° 42.876′ N, 74° 0.247′ W. Marker is in New York, New York, in New York County. Marker is on Duane Street near Elk Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New York NY 10007, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. African Burial Ground (a few steps from this marker); Africans in Early New York
Inset image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, October 10, 2011
2. Inset
Activists hold vigil in 1992 to honor those laid to rest in the African Burial ground.
(a few steps from this marker); African Burial Ground National Monument (a few steps from this marker); Changing Landscape Obscures the Past (within shouting distance of this marker); "Sankofa" (within shouting distance of this marker); Foley Square c. 1730 (within shouting distance of this marker); Foley Square c. 1800 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Triumph of the Human Spirit (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New York.
 
More about this marker. Elk Street and this stretch of Duane Street have been closed to automobile through traffic since 9/11.
 
Regarding Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground. The monument is listed in the "AIA (American Institute of Architects) Guide to New York City, Fifth Edition".
 
Categories. African AmericansCemeteries & Burial SitesColonial Era
 
Inset image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, October 10, 2011
3. Inset
Despite a 1751 law limiting the number of enslaved Africans who could assemble for a funeral to no more than 12, Africans and their descendants continued to venerate loved ones. Their burial ground was outside the city wall, or palisade, (Chambers Street today) built by enslaved Africans in 1746.
Diorama at the 290 Broadway building image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, December 20, 2013
4. Diorama at the 290 Broadway building
Nearby, the reburial mounds image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, 2008
5. Nearby, the reburial mounds
President Obasanjo's resolution marker at the gravesite image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, 2005
6. President Obasanjo's resolution marker at the gravesite
Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Larry Gertner, February 15, 2019
7. Sacred Tradition, Sacred Ground Marker
The marker is on the Duane Street side, closest to the camera.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 20, 2019. This page originally submitted on February 14, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. This page has been viewed 54 times since then. Last updated on February 15, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on February 14, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.   7. submitted on February 15, 2019, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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