African American Cemeteries in Harford County, Maryland
Henry C. Peden, Jr.
There are twenty-three African American cemeteries in Harford County, Maryland. Some of the tombstones and grave markers were copied by various people at times since the 1960s and the information was filed with the Historical Society of Harford County; however, the author realized that these lists were incomplete and an update was needed. In 2018 the author visited these African American cemeteries and copied every tombstone and grave marker he could find. Interestingly, some of the markers copied previously were not found and others had been overlooked. Many of those interred did not have a tombstone and while some had temporary funeral home markers, others had handmade wooden crosses and even a few were handwritten on flat cement slabs. Many inscriptions included nicknames, Biblical quotes, poetic verses, photographs, images, and family relationships.
Thousands were buried without any markers of any kind being placed on their graves. To compensate for this lack of information, the author conducted additional research and found more burials in some death certificates, some obituaries, some extant funeral home records, namely J. A. Pennington in Havre de Grace and E. G. Kurtz in Jarrettsville, and a few monuments made by the J. C. Taylor Marble Co. His efforts resulted in 6,854 burials being identified and collected for this book, which by no means contains all of the burials in the African American cemeteries in Harford County, Maryland, but it goes a long way in helping to identify many of the people who are buried here.
This work has been compiled as a research tool to be used in assisting family history researchers in locating the graves and learning more about their departed ancestors. It is more than a listing of names and dates since most contain family relationships and biographical information, including civic and military service in many cases. It is arranged alphabetically, which precludes the need for a separate index, and at the end of each entry the name of the cemetery is indicated in brackets. Names that appear on the same tombstone or obelisk are noted within the text. Descriptions of the cemeteries are included in the Introduction.
2022, 8½x11, paper, alphabetical, 442 pp