New push underway to help restore historically Black cemetery

KMOV News Channel 4 reported on March 31, 2021

Washington Park Cemetery is located in Berkeley, Missouri sandwiched between Interstate 70, Highway 170 and Natural Bridge. A burial site established in 1920, local leaders say that decades of bad decisions by city and county leaders have destroyed this historically black cemetery.

In the 1950s the cemetery was paved over for construction of 1-70. In the 1970s a portion of the property was taken for airport expansion. And in the 1990s the cemetery was disturbed again for the constructions of the Metrolink.

“A total of 12,000 and 13,000 bodies were dug up and moved and lost to poor record keeping.”
– Senator Brian Williams.

Senator Brian Williams says his office is helping to guide efforts towards restoration through a multi-year effort to turn this cemetery into a St. Louis County Heritage site, until a permanent ownership structure site can be established.

In 2020, volunteers launched the cemetery’s 100 anniversary project, they’ve been out conducting clean ups and outreach efforts.

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