Hillcrest Cemetery

Hillcrest Cemetery is one of four burying grounds established for the African American community in segregated Raleigh. The prominent Lightner brothers, Calvin and Rayford, established Hillcrest in 1926 in association with their Lightner Funeral Home, founded in 1908. It was the first undertaking business owned by African Americans in Raleigh. Today, there are about five hundred marked graves in the small, three-acre cemetery; the last burials were made in 2014. Gravestones range from commercially engraved monuments to handmade concrete markers. The landscape is planned but simple, with a linear arrangement throughout the generally open, level area. One large magnolia tree stands at the heart of the cemetery.

Dates: ca. 1920, 1926

Images

Hillcrest Cemetery Plaque Ceremony,  2022
Hillcrest Cemetery Plaque Ceremony, 2022 Image courtesy of City of Raleigh
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2020
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2020 Image courtesy of City of Raleigh
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021 Image courtesy of D. Strevel, Capital City Camera Club.
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021 Image courtesy of D. Strevel, Capital City Camera Club.
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021 Image courtesy of D. Strevel, Capital City Camera Club.
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021
Hillcrest Cemetery, 2021 Image courtesy of D. Strevel, Capital City Camera Club.

Location

1905 Garner Road

Metadata

RHDC, “Hillcrest Cemetery,” Raleigh Historic, accessed May 30, 2024, https://raleighhistoric.org/items/show/196.