ATLANTA - 125 years ago…six former slaves believed that African Americans in Atlanta deserved a decent, respectful resting place. That dream became the historic South-View Cemetery located on Jonesboro Road. Appropriately, next month, the great-great-great grandson of famous abolitionist Frederick Douglass, Kenneth Morris and dozens of families will gather to honor those who have made their earthly transition and the historic legacy of this celebrated hallowed ground.
Jacob McKinley, George W. Graham, Robert Grant, Charles H. Morgan, Albert Watts and John Render came together to organize a facility where everyone would be honored in the previously segregated South. As a result, on April 21st, 1886, South-View Cemetery received its charter. The special 2011 Palm Sunday celebration will also mark the dedication of the new mausoleum.
Before there was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., there was Rev. Martin Luther “Daddy” King Sr. and his devoted wife Alberta King. Both are entombed at South-View. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was originally entombed at the cemetery until his body was moved to a crypt at the King Center. In fact, every pastor of the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church is buried at South-View. Several other famous ministers including Bishop Henry McNeal Turner, Edward Randolph Carter and many others are honored at this great Lakewood Heights location.
Other notables at South-View cemetery include educators like C.L. Harper, M. Agnes Jones, David T. Howard, Luther Judson Price, millionaire businessman Alonzo Herndon, two Tuskegee Airmen, several Atlanta Black Crackers and others who represent the rich history and legacy of Atlanta. The roots of Morris Brown College run deep at South-View with the presence of two presidents, Rev. John Lewis and Dean Edward Caesar Mitchell. The grandfather of Atlanta’s first African American mayor Maynard Jackson, John Wesley Dobbs, also rests at South-View. The bottom line is that South-View Cemetery is a true historic treasure for the city of Atlanta and preservationists.
The preservation foundation is also looking for special pictures and stories from family members who have loved ones included in the South-View family. Please share your special memory with us for commemorative material as well as the development of our future projects.
A very special announcement will be made at the 125th anniversary celebration that will be held on the grounds on Sunday, April 17, 2011 at 2 pm that will represent a special technological and educational initiative of South-View. Former Atlanta City Council president Lisa Borders, whose grandfather, Rev. William Holmes Borders is also interred at the cemetery will also be featured at this special celebration.