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Mesquite, TX – February 19, 2018 – Tonight, the Mesquite City Council received financial donations to finalize a project to recognize African-American workers buried at the historic Brickyard Cemetery. Donations by residents, the local NAACP and Historic Mesquite, Inc. will provide the City a portion of the funds needed to install an official marker memorializing the site. The City will provide the balance of funds needed to complete the project.
Approximately 80 African-American employees of the Ferris Brick Company and their family members were buried at the Brickyard Cemetery in the early 1900s. The Mesquite brick company opened in 1904 and closed in the 1950s.
The project will erect a permanent marker on the site of the cemetery. It will identify the names of many of those buried on the site and will house artifacts found on the site during an archeological study performed in the early 2000’s.
City Manager Cliff Keheley said, “We are extremely proud to have this opportunity to recognize important people in Mesquite’s history. It is always exciting when you have the privilege to embrace and celebrate a significant piece our community’s past. This was truly a community partnership.”
Keheley indicated the City of Mesquite was able to preserve the property located on Peachtree Road from potential developers by acquiring ownership of the cemetery in 2001. In 2002, the 3-acre cemetery earned a Historic Texas Cemetery designation by the Texas Historical Commission.