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Cemtery Sign
Grave Marker
Hackensack Cemetery Sign
Henry Byrd Grave Marker

 

This grave marker which is at Hackensack Cemetery, located at
289 Hackensack Avenue Hackensack, New Jersey, reveals that Henry Byrd served in the U.S. Army during World War I for the State of South Carolina and died at the age of 66. 

Henry Byrd was not onthe Original Honor Roll List, which was in the Evening Record newspaper
October 5, 1918
, but this confirms his connection to Hackensack by being buried within its borders since passing and forevermore.

Henry Byrd is buried in the African American section of Hackensack Cemetery. In the 1880’s a law was passed because of an incident concerning Hackensack cemetery making it a crime to refuse burial of African Americans in cemeteries with a fine of up to $500.00. 

Click here to view

The cemetery was officially founded in the 1890’s and the segregation within its grounds went on for many years to follow with attitudes probably changing after World War II. Naturally people bought grave plots before passing in the 1950’s or 1960’s when attitudes were changing and so many African Americans became more comfortable resting their loved ones in a more traditional area among friends and family since, so not much has changed. Italians in Hackensack are much more highly represented in
St. Joseph’s Cemetery for similar reasons they really were not welcome in the more Dutch and Anglo-Saxon cemetery of Hackensack at the turn of the 1900th to the 20th century so they created their own cemetery through St. Joseph’s Church.

Written by:
Bob Meli
August 11, 2018

 

Background image of African American soldiers recruiting poster obtained from:
http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/slideshow/world-war-i-propaganda-posters/