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Old Aug 16, 2010, 10:19 AM   #1
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Default Colored Cemetery in Montgomery, NY

Inscription on the entrance to "Colored Cemetery" in Montgomery, New York:

"COLORED CEMETERY"

Not all who arrived in this "New World" came of their own free will. There were those brought in heavy iron shackles -- victims of the cruel and inhumane institution known as slavery.

According to records, 236 slaves, and 17 free blacks and American Indians lived in the town of Montgomery in 1790. Since then, the veil of time has obscured much of the information about them and this half acre of sacred ground. It is known, however, that the cemetery was established in the mid-18th century and most likely used for slaves owned by some of the original palatine settlers. Within the boundaries of this historic site are more than 100 markers; two of which are known to be inscribed. One bears the date of 1756.

This cemetery is an important link to our past and an everlasting reminder of the contributions and sacrifices made by the souls interred here in the establishment of this nation and the town of Montgomery. They helped to open what was once the American Frontier. May this site always be respected and treated as hallowed ground.

Robert L. Williams - Town Historian, 1995

The restoration of this cemetery has been made possible through the generosity of many donors and the encouragement of the Montgomery Town Board.

#1) Across the road from this farmland...


#2) ...is a "colored cemetery" believed to hold the remains of 18th Century African-American slaves.


#3) After being neglected for more than a century, pipes were placed beside stone markers in 1995 to rededicate the cemetery.


#4) Totem in the cemetery. We don't know who placed it there.


#5) Two stones had inscriptions, one bearing the date 1756 -- twenty years before the American Declaration of Independence.


#6) For the rest, stones will do to mark the spot where the dead are buried.
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