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Silver Lake Cemetery Preservation

It is our collective obligation to the 13,600 indigent Jews buried at Silver Lake, and their families, to preserve and maintain this historic cemetery with dignity and respect.
Silver Lake Cemetery, 1940
Silver Lake Cemetery, 1940


Between 1892 and 1909, HFBA buried 13,600 impoverished Jews at Silver Lake Cemetery. Over half were infants and children.

Originally planned for just 4,000 burials, the cemetery filled beyond capacity by 1909. Opportunistic trees, vandalism, and the ravages of nature and time have wrought major damage. Remains have shifted away from their burial spots, headstones have been overturned, and most headstones have disappeared.

Poor drainage means that areas are flooded after heavy rains, creating small ponds. Flooding mainly occurs in the children’s section.

silver lake cemetery


  • Silver Lake Cemetery is a key part of the history of New York City, Staten Island, New York Jewry and American Jewry.
  • It’s on the NY State and National Register of Historic Places, testifying to its importance.
  • The site must be structurally sound, secured and made safe again for visitors.
  • After undertaking needed repairs, HFBA will promote Silver Lake as a must-see site for tourists and anyone interested in New York City and the history of immigration.

Today, Silver Lake helps to educate young people about their history and the history of New York City.

Some 1,000 high school students participate in clean-up projects every year, a task that is very meaningful to them

We gratefully acknowledge the generous support of :

New York State Environmental Protection Fund

David Berg Foundation

Richmond County Savings Foundation

Mrs. Leona Kern

In Loving Memory of Irving Klein