let me begin by saying happy birthday to me! i’m 30 today!
i began my birthday week with a trip to new york city to see one of my bff’s that graduated with her master’s on may 12th (congrats again faith!). on monday we’re walking in manhattan and i see a street sign that says “african burial ground way”. i point it out to faith and we proceed across the street to read the signs around what looks like a shrine.
we learned something new that day.
in that spot in 1991, during excavation work for a new federal office building, workers discovered the skeletal remains of the first of more than 400 men, women and children. Further investigation revealed that during the 17th and 18th centuries, free and enslaved Africans were buried in a 6.6 acre burial ground in lower Manhattan outside the boundaries of the settlement of New Amsterdam, which would become New York. Over the decades, the unmarked cemetery was covered over by development and landfill.
The African Burial Ground National Monument, located at the corners of Duane and Elk Streets in lower Manhattan, is operated by the National Park Service. For directions to the site and more information, go to www.nps.gov/afbg
The memorial is open Monday through Sunday 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day.
The African Burial Ground Visitor Center is located in the adjacent Ted Weiss Federal Building at 290 Broadway. The hours of operation are Monday thorough Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. except for federal holidays.