The African American Cemetery in Holmdel is located behind the houses on Canyon Woods Court cul-de-sac, east of the Roman Catholic Cemetery. There are public access easements from Canyon Woods and Grandview Ave.
Existence of this cemetery is documented in Monmouth County Property Deed Book No. 347, page 338, March 7, 1882, referring to Theodore Thorne's property, which specifically refers to it as a colored cemetery.

As of August 13, 2013, there are 10 visible gravestones with 11 names, and 35 unmarked burials. The unmarked burials are from information gleaned from obituaries and death certificates. This cemetery is also referred to as the African American section of the Pleasant Valley Cemetery.

The following inscription information was transcribed by Edward Fitzgerald on a walkthrough, May 8, 2001:

1-1 Charles H. Napoleon, born 10/20/1853, died 03/20/1868; (Note: Charles Napoleon was a Private with Co. C, 81st and 93rd US Colored Infantry).
1-2 Hannah Mariah, granddaughter of Abraham & Hannah Holmes, died 09/16/1847, aged 3 years;
1-3 Ann Eliza Holmes, daughter of Abraham & Hannah Holmes, died 11/10/1845, age 25y-10m-11d;

2-1 Alice L., wife of William Napoleon, born 03/22/1830, died 05/01/1884; (Note: Alice was the granddaughter of Abraham & Hannah Holmes).
2-2 Abraham Holmes, born 10/14/1798, died 06/26/1854; (Note: Abraham Holmes was the slave of John H. Holmes and was freed 12/05/1833. This action was filed in Book D of Manumissions, page 17).
2-2 Hannah, wife of Abraham Holmes, born 01/20/1791, died 05/15/1879;

3-1 fieldstone marker;
3-2 (probably Martha, wife of) Brazilla Vanderveere, died 01/21/1888, aged 50 years (broken stone);

Misplaced stones:
- James Henry Riley, eldest son of James & Eleanor Riley, died 05/11/1870, age 16-?-15;
- Emma Ward . . .

Numbering is Row-Stone, as in Row 1, Gravestone 1. Other unmarked graves are reported to be in this cemetery.
Thank you for visiting this Monmouth County Genealogy Research Services page.
George Joynson is available for your genealogy research at Monmouth County Genealogy Research Services, or you can email him or call 1(732) 239-0118.
Last updated November 2006. Hope to hear from you soon!