By Izack Seahorn, Staff Correspondent
Gadsden native Chari Bostic has spent close to a decade of her life working to preserve the historic Sixth Street Cemetery.
The Grace Heritage Foundation is Bostic’s effort to maintain and renew the cultural landmark that rests in Gadsden. According to Bostic, the foundation’s mission is to “restore, catalogue, identify, and preserve the history” of the Sixth Street Cemetery.
Keeping history alive is not an easy job for foundation volunteers, who must clear sections of the over eight-acre property while looking for headstones and gathering any information they can about the people buried at the location.
Preserving the cemetery is a difficult work and the foundation welcomes volunteers. Those wishing to get involved in helping the Bostic and the Grace Heritage Foundation should save the date of August 7, which will be the foundation’s next big workday. Information about the workday can be found on the foundation’s Facebook page.
While Bostic’s work is inspiring and uplifting, the history of the cemetery is dark and rooted in the South’s past of slavery. Bostic said that although the work is rewarding, learning about the story of the cemetery and dealing with people vandalizing the property can make her angry.
For people looking to learn about the cemetery and the history of African Americans in Gadsden, Bostic takes appointments through the Facebook page “Grace Heritage Community Developments.”
She hopes that the group’s museum on South Sixth Street downtown will reopen this year for people to come in and learn.