Oberlin Cemetery Cleanup – September 19


The Friends of Oberlin Village invite the community to join them in the effort to protect and preserve Oberlin Cemetery, an historic African American burial place. The next Oberlin Cemetery Community Clean Up will be held on Saturday, September 19 from 9:00 a.m. until 12 noon at the site, which is located at 1014 Oberlin Road.

By clearing underbrush and removing fallen tree limbs, Friends of Oberlin Village are revealing grave markers and making the burial ground accessible for a future forensic survey to locate unmarked graves and map the area. Participants should come dressed for yard work and debris removal, wearing long sleeved shirts, closed-toe shoes and work gloves. Tools such as wheelbarrows, small wagons, chain saws, weed trimmers and pruners are needed to assist with the clean-up. This is a great opportunity for those who need community service hours.

About Oberlin Cemetery

Designated as an official historic landmark in February of 2013, Oberlin Cemetery is located in the heart of Oberlin Village in Raleigh and is the burial site of some of the most prominent members of the African American community. There are believed to be over 600 graves there, some still marked by gravestones and ornate markers. The Friends of Oberlin Village is the grassroots community organization committed to preserving these grounds and recording the legacies of the persons laid to rest there. The group offers a way for the community to come together and help preserve the memory of this historic location and protect a key landmark in the history of Raleigh and the state of North Carolina.

Established in 1873, Oberlin Cemetery served as a final resting place for people who by law could not be buried anywhere else. There are freed black doctors, lawyers, artisans, teachers, ministers, pillars of the community and even a Buffalo Soldier buried there, truly heroes of Raleigh and this country as well. Walking through the grounds is like turning through the pages of Raleigh history.

About Friends of Oberlin Village

The Friends of Oberlin Village recognize that if this cemetery is not preserved, a significant section of history will be forever lost. They have spearheaded some upgrades on the property and also plan to sponsor thermal scanning to identify and quantify each grave, create a map, and determine vital statistics of the deceased.

In addition to the cemetery clean-ups, the Friends of Oberlin Village actively collect donations to assist with the costs of this preservation effort. Please consider sending a donation. Checks should be made payable to Friends of Oberlin Village and mailed to: Wilson Temple UMC, 1023 Oberlin Rd., Raleigh, NC 27605.

For more information on the Oberlin Cemetery Community Clean Up, please see their website or contact Sabrina Goode at 336-416-1895 or via e-mail at sabrinabgoode@gmail.com.

For more information on Oberlin Cemetery and Friends of Oberlin Village, please visit their website at www.friendsofoberlin.org, like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Friendsofoberlin, or contact Sabrina Goode at sabrinabgoode@gmail.com.

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