Long Awaited Memorial Coming to Burial Ground in Queens

Oct 26, 2018

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a plan to create a memorial in The Olde Town of Flushing Burial Ground in Queens.
Credit Ang Santos / WBGO

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a plan to create a memorial in The Olde Town of Flushing Burial Ground in Queens.  

Now part of New York City’s parks department, it’s said up to 1,000 people were buried on site in the 1800’s.  Death records from the period show a majority of them are African American or Native American.  

“This is part of how we heal the wounds is to really recognize the history fully.  To return the humanity to people who often had their human values stolen from them.  Who were treated as something less than equal.  To honor them with this kind of commemoration is absolutely crucial,” said de Blasio.

A commemorative plaza is being planned. Queens Borough President Melinda Katz says a wall will honor the recorded names put to rest, with additional space for those discovered as research continues.

“This is about acknowledgement.  This is about equality.  This is about never forgetting where we come form in this great borough of Queens.  We may have 200 languages here, but we stand on the shoulders of those that came before us.”   

The project is still in its beginning stages but is scheduled to go before the NYC Public Design Commission in November.