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Lost Cemeteries

Grant Mishoe is an expert at locating forgotten burial grounds. Through his research, we learned about two burial grounds for people of African descent, located on Calhoun and Smith Streets in downtown Charleston. They were actively used as burial sites between 1817 through 1934 and contain the remains of generations of neighborhood families, numbering around 3600 individuals.

Cemeteries like Ephrath and Trinity predate modern laws that require long-term plans for funding and ongoing maintenance. African and African descendant people’s burial sites are disappearing from the American landscape, taking with them history, heritage and a people's place in rapidly changing urban and rural areas.

Our work to restore, preserve and document of these treasured grave sites is intended to honor the histories of the deceased, so that we can share what we can learn from our Ancestors about this community’s spiritual and cultural heritage.