Westley Wallace Law's gravestone in Laurel Grove Cemetery


Westley Wallace Law's gravestone in Laurel Grove Cemetery
Memorialization of Urban Slavery in Southern Coastal Cities


slavery; memorials


Westley Wallace Law served as president of the Savannah chapter of the NAACP for 30 years and worked his entire life for civil rights. He is buried in Laurel Grove Cemetery South, the black side of the cemetery (as opposed to the north/white side). It is currently one of the oldest black cemeteries still in use, the land having been put aside in 1853.
This project was funded by Bernard and Anne Spitzer Travel Fellowship for research projects involving travel abroad and incorporating the study of architecture, landscape architecture, or urbanism.
My goal was to research, witness, and record how each of my chosen Southern port cities has dealt with its past in regards to urban slavery, and to begin making a record of this history. Although all of the locations I visited were major hubs of the American slave trade, these cities remain mostly lacking in admitting their full and complete history. The inaccurate and incomplete narratives, lack of memorials, and white-washed histories designed to appeal to the tourist industry do not tell the stories of the slaves in an unbiased and forthright way. So much of what I witnessed revolved around a very racially divided tourist industry, but I know that change is possible. The story of urban slavery is not just the story of African Americans in the United States, but the story of all of us, and the more we can understand this, the better off we all will be.


Whang, Maura


This image is under copyright. You need to contact copyright owners for any commercial or non-commercial uses. Contact information: digital@ccny.cuny.edu.
Whang, Maura


Architecture and City Planning




Savannah, GA




Whang, Maura, “Westley Wallace Law's gravestone in Laurel Grove Cemetery,” Spitzer School of Architecture, accessed July 24, 2024, http://digitalscholarship.ccny.cuny.edu/architecture/items/show/1046.

Image Viewer

Click below to view an image using the Zoom.it viewer.

Item Relations

This item has no relations.