Books for Genealogists: ‘African American Historic Burial Grounds and Gravesites of New England’

This is an important book for genealogists wanting to research African American family lines, and all genealogists wanting to know more about New England cemeteries. It is an essential purchase for all genealogists researching early African American lines, and should be in all public and academic libraries in New England and across the U.S. – particularly in all genealogical collections.

Photo: cover of the book "African American Historic Burial Grounds and Gravesites of New England" by Glenn A. Knoblock
African American Historic Burial Grounds and Gravesites of New England. Glenn A. Knoblock. McFarland, 2015. 332p. Softcover. pISBN 978-0-7864-7011-2. $45. To contact the publisher & order this book click here.

Glenn Knoblock examined gravestones throughout New England from the 1600s to the 1900s and found that “gravestones that exhibit any unique African theme or motifs are non-existent.” He went on to stay that the type of stone used, the carving and inscriptions were the same as other residents buried at the same time period. Over the past 300 years Americans have been buried in family plots, public cemeteries and cemeteries organized by racial, ethnic and religious groups.

The book is arranged in sections by state and is fully indexed with a brief but important bibliography for further research.

Bottom Line: Genealogists follow clues in documenting their family lines – researching in newspapers, public records and stories passed down in the family. Genealogists working on African American roots will find this book must-reading, giving insights and clues that we need to track down our relatives. Finding the gravesite of an ancestor is one of those “wow” moments that we never forget. Knoblock’s book will help you get there. This is a must-have book for all New England libraries – with a wide interest in public libraries across the country, and essential for all U.S. genealogical collections.

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