Keystone Memorial Cemetery, in Hillsborough County, Florida, was founded in the early 1900s by Tony Lewis, a formerly enslaved Black man. Keystone “disappeared” in the 1950s when new owners didn’t allow the church that maintained the cemetery to continue using the land.  Remnants of the cemetery, cornerstones that mark the boundary of a grave, were found in Lake Twitt on Bay Tree Farm in early 2020. It is believed that up to 75 bodies remain in the land, their markers having been removed and, over the years, dumped into the lake for sport by college students. Keystone is one of several “lost” Black cemeteries uncovered in the last two years under buildings, parking lots, schools and other developments in Florida.

Divers Find Grave Markers (Tampa Bay Times)
Headstones in a Lake? (Tampa Bay Times)

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