by Kennedi Cox
The Center for University-Based Development (CUBD) at Jackson State University received a $15,000 grant from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History (MDAH) to remodel and preserve historic Mount Olive Cemetery, located on John R. Lynch Street.
Heather Wilcox, neighborhood development coordinator for the CUBD at Jackson State University, said Mount Olive Cemetery has a rich history. She said it also provides a final resting place for the first African-American doctors, lawyers, legislators, dentists and midwives in Jackson.
The cemetery, next to the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) building, will have preservation work done to highlight the significance of the site as well as the people buried in it.
“The history of the West Jackson community and Mount Olive Cemetery are an interconnected story of a rich historical timeline dating back to the early 1800s and marks not only a point of beginning for West Jackson and this important story is worthy of preservation,” Wilcox said.
Dating back to the first burial in 1807, this cemetery has a lot of rich history of former slaves and prominent African-Americans within the community. There are no plans for more burials. It is hoped that this site will become a tourist attraction.