Unearthing Black History in Brooklyn: Green-Wood Cemetery’s Freedom Lots
This episode will explore a lesser-known (African American) area of Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery: the Freedom Lots. In 2017, these seven lots were restored by Green-Wood’s conservation staff and a group of student interns. This first episode of this season tells the story of these lots — the people of color who took action to not only preserve the physical graves but the memories of those buried there.
Founded in 1838, Green-Wood is one of the earliest (and most famous) rural cemeteries in America. Its grandiose, park-like setting is scattered with notable burial sites and architectural masterpieces, just one aspect of the significance of this National Historic Landmark. But, in our interviews with Green-Wood staff members (Neela Wickremesinghe, Jeff Richman, and Darryl Jones), we learned about the Freedom Lots, an area of the cemetery where African Americans were buried.
Our guests include Green-Wood’s Director of Restoration and Preservation, Neela Wickremesinghe; staff Historian, Jeff Richman; and Darryl Jones (Neela’s former intern who now works for the cemetery full time)!
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