About Prospect Hill Cemetery Washington, D.C – History & Location

Prospect Hill Cemetery, also known as the German Cemetery, is a historic German-American cemetery founded in 1858 and located at 2201 North Capitol Street in Washington, D.C. From 1886 to 1895, the Prospect Hill Cemetery board of directors battled a rival organization which illegally attempted to take title to the grounds and sell a portion of them as building lots. From 1886 to 1898, the cemetery also engaged in a struggle against the District of Columbia and the United States Congress, which wanted construct a main road (North Capitol Street) through the center of the cemetery.

This led to the passage of an Act of Congress, the declaration of a federal law to be unconstitutional, the passage of a second Act of Congress, a second major court battle, and the declaration by the courts that the city’s eminent domain procedures were unconstitutional. North Capitol Street was built, and the cemetery compensated fairly for its property.

In the 20th century, Prospect Hill Cemetery sold unneeded land, dismantled its chapel, and repositioned the cemetery’s main entrance toward North Capitol Street and away from Lincoln Road NE. Established as a burying ground for members of the Lutheran faith, it gradually became a secular cemetery. Prospect Hill remains an active cemetery, and continues to accept burials.

If you have concerns about this publication, please click Contact Us