Since 1807, the Historic Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C. has been a resting place for military generals, public
officials, Native American leaders, Union and Confederate Civil War soldiers, and people of all professions and trades. The Cemetery serves to preserve, promote, and protect the historic and active burial ground located there. In 2011 it was registered as a national historical landmark.
Little known, however, is that Chinese migrants were buried at the Range 99 section of the Cemetery between 1896 and 1938. Per Chinese custom, remains were returned for reburial in China where ancestral rites could be observed. Today, no markers remain at the burial site. Members of the Historic Congressional Cemetery and 1882 Foundation have sought to preserve the history of these Chinese burial sites and recognize this piece of Chinese American history in Washington, DC. Chinese American contribution to building the American nation should not remain invisible.
In 2015, the 1882 Foundation installed two benches and a small plaque to memorialize the burial sites of these Chinese American Washingtonians. Since then, a storm took down a large tree and the cemetery’s brick wall that served as the backdrop to the burial site. The benches and surrounding paving that we installed was a casualty of that damage too.
We need your help with its reconstruction and site improvements. Our plan is to rebuild this important memorial. We will install new trees to restore the site’s tree canopy and provide shade
for visitors to linger as they learn about those previously buried here. We will also install new benches and brick paving. The existing plaque will be reinstalled, with additional interpretive signage to commemorate those buried here. Our desire is to establish a space that connects Chinese and American history then and today, and that connects generations of Chinese Americans with their ancestors in China and in the United States.
The 1882 Project Foundation is an IRS-approved 501(c)(3) organization formed in the state of Virginia. All donations are tax deductible.
For questions or concerns please contact
Jenn Low (email@example.com).