Documenting the American South

Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    Margaret Lane Cemetery Grave Marker, Hillsborough

  • Type


  • Subjects

    African American Monuments

  • City


  • County


  • Description

    This monument is composed of a large, natural rock with a rectangular bronze plaque commemorating the names of those known to have been buried there from the mid-19th century to the early 1930s.

    The cemetery has an additional memorial commemorating the cemetery and those who are buried but whose names remain unknown, The Margaret Lane Cemetery Memorial. This memorial is located on the west side of the cemetery at the corner of Margaret Lane and Hillsborough Avenue.

    Image of setting

  • Inscription

    Image of inscripton

  • Custodian

    Town of Hillsborough

  • Dedication Date

    November 1, 1987

  • Decade


  • Geographic Coordinates

    36.074130 , -79.108880 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      "Margaret Lane Cemetery Before 1854 to 1931," Town of Hillsborough, North Carolina, (accessed February 3, 2013) Link

      Reilly, Katie. "Hillsborough woman works to restore Old Slave Cemetery," The Daily Tar Heel (Chapel Hill, NC), September 20, 2011, (accessed February 3, 2013) Link

      Town of Hillsborough. "Margaret Lane Cemetery," Historic Hillsborough, (accessed October 27, 2012) Link

  • Public Site


  • Materials & Techniques

    Stone, bronze

  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    The monument was dedicated on an autumn day in 1987.

  • Subject Notes

    This memorial was dedicated following the restoration of the cemetery in 1987 by the Town of Hillsborough.

    The cemetery is also known as the Old Slave Cemetery and the African American Cemetery.

  • Controversies

    According to a pamphlet prepared by the Town of Hillsborough, in the late 1970s a group interested in building a church on the site discovered that the town did not have a deed for the land. The group filed for a quit-claim deed which the town countered and won, enabling it to retain title to the property.

  • Location

    The lower entrance to the Margaret Lane Cemetery sits on South Occoneechee Street in Hillsborough. The cemetery is bounded on the north by Margaret Lane and on the west by Hillsborough Avenue. The stone and bronze marker sits in the center of the cemetery on the slope just up the rise from the Occoneechee Street entrance. The bronze plaque faces the east side of the cemetery.

  • Landscape

    The marker sits in the open, grassy clearing of the cemetery just beyond the shade of a large old oak tree.

  • Death Space


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