Main fundraiser photo

Save Historic Halfway African American Cemetery

Donation protected
***NOTE: Thank you to all who donated! Now that we're a nonprofit, we've closed this fundraiser and have opened a new one, where you can donate to our 2023 goals.***

We're fundraising to help restore a historic black cemetery that was lost and completely overgrown.
Halfway African American Cemetery is an abandoned black cemetery just outside Hagerstown, in Washington County, Maryland. It has more than 300 known burials, dating from between 1844 and 1932. Since March 2020, the Friends of Halfway African American Cemetery, a diverse and informal volunteer group, has been working to protect and restore the cemetery. We’ve made impressive progress, but we have a lot left to do!
Please see our Facebook page, Friends of Halfway MD African American Cemetery , to follow ongoing cleanup, research, and other activities.
We’re raising funds to implement the following plans soon: professionally survey the cemetery boundaries; incorporate the Friends group and apply for 501(c)(3) status; and continue ground-penetrating radar and other non-invasive survey techniques to locate unmarked graves.
Budget for this fundraising campaign:
Cemetery boundary survey $1200.
Incorporation & 501(c)(3) fees $ 700.
GPR/magnetometry surveys $1500.
Total $3500.
We’ll also continue to work with an attorney to resolve the ownership of the cemetery, which is currently in legal limbo. The 19th-century organization that owned it no longer exists; however, cemeteries are protected under Maryland law. In the future, as a nonprofit, we’ll be able to fundraise through membership, grants, and events. Once we become a nonprofit, we’ll develop a comprehensive site plan, including restoration of fallen and broken grave markers as appropriate, fencing, signage, paths, repairs, maintenance, etc.
Halfway Cemetery was one of the main cemeteries for the historic Jonathan Street community in Hagerstown, one of Maryland's earliest free black communities. At least twelve veterans are buried here—eleven from the Civil War and one from World War I.
The cemetery was completely derelict when we held the first cleanup day in early March 2020. Since then, throughout the pandemic, volunteers and donors have been persistent in clearing away the vegetation, locating grave markers, and caring for this special place. We now need funds to continue with the work. Please help us preserve this vital part of Maryland’s African American history.


  • Boyd Cook
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Jay Schill
    • $50 
    • 1 yr
  • Anonymous
    • $200 
    • 2 yrs
  • Lisa Bromfield
    • $25 
    • 2 yrs
  • Sakima Howard
    • $50 
    • 2 yrs


Emilie Amt
Hagerstown, MD

Your easy, powerful, and trusted home for help

  • Easy

    Donate quickly and easily

  • Powerful

    Send help right to the people and causes you care about

  • Trusted

    Your donation is protected by the GoFundMe Giving Guarantee