The Friends of the

African Union Church Cemetery


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Preservation, Commemoration, Education

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Five federal tombstones mark the USCT veterans' final resting place in Delaware City: James Elbert, Joseph Byard, Lewis Taylor, William Crawford, and Alexander Draper. Byard’s neighbor William Watson, another Polktown USCT veteran, may be interred here. In a nearby cemetery lies fellow soldier Joseph LeCount.

Polktown       Polktown

About the Friends of the African Union Church Cemetery

Right here in Delaware City lies an unheralded bit of American history – a lost cemetery containing the remains of generations of African-Americans from our area. This cemetery is the burial place of 5 members of the US Colored Troops who served bravely served the Union in the Civil War.

The Friends of the African Union Church Cemetery was founded in 1996 by concerned citizens to preserve and teach about this cemetery, owned by the Mt. Salem UAME Church. After two decades, the restored cemetery and memorial plaza opened to the public along the Delaware City Canal Trail.

It is our mission to preserve this place. We tell the story of the mostly forgotten people who lived here, died, and were buried there.

Join us to learn about The African Union Church Cemetery’s restoration and maintenance.

News and Notes...

Juneteenth 2024

We are celebrating Juneteenth 2024 with several events right here in Delaware City.

Make a Difference!

We are looking for a Living History Interpreter

The Board of Directors for Friends of the African Union Church Cemetery (FAUCC) is seeking  someone to present our Voices From the Past program.

This position is for an individual to portray, in costume, a 19th century United States Colored Trooper (USCT)*. The Living History Interpreter will be paid on a contracted, per performance basis and must be available on various days to provide interpretation in schools and other venues where hours may vary. All performances are scheduled on an as requested basis as schools and other venues book them.

Make a Difference!

Join our Advisory Board

The Board of Directors for Friends of the African Union Church Cemetery (FAUCC) is seeking volunteer Advisory Board members.

The Board of Directors welcomes people with diverse backgrounds and interests that include developing and presenting educational programs, marketing, social media, website development, historical research, and fundraising.

Voices Long Forgotten

The Friends have completed our short film which tells the story of Polktown, its restored African Union Church Cemetery, and a particular United States Colored Troops soldier, Pvt. James H. Elbert, who fought in the Civil War.

Voices from the Past

Voices from the Past is our wonderful FREE traveling education program designed for schools, community groups, and churches. The program shares the story of the once-forgotten cemetery and the local United States Colored Troops buried there. Living historian and storyteller Willis Phelps brings to life Private James Elbert, who served with the USCT during the Civil War and was nearly executed for desertion only to be found innocent. Accompanied by a facilitator that sets the stage for his presentation, the program is tailored for school children or the general public.

Voices Long Forgotten teaser

The Friends are working on a video to augment our Voices of the Past presentation. We have a 90-second teaser that presents the cemetery, the soldiers, and Polktown. Please check it out!

Bi-Monthly Meeting

The Friends meet every the third Thursday of every other month. We are meeting in-person this month. If you are interested in attending this remote meeting see the link below.


Check out our Epitaph newsletter for history of the cemetery, its neighborhood, and its people, as well as progress reports about our renovations.


The African Union Church Cemetery