The burial ground in Prospect Park

Walk into Prospect Park at the 15th Street and Prospect Park West entrance and head toward the woods off Center Drive. On the other side of a barbed-wire fence is a hidden little Quaker cemetery that predates Prospect Park. 


Unfortunately the entrance is always closed to park-goers, and you can’t get close enough to read the modest, unadorned gravestones. But it’s neat nonetheless. Not a bad deal to have your final resting place in a beautiful city park, right?


It’s safe to assume that the Brooklynites buried here were ordinary citizens. But there’s one famous name who managed to make it in. Actor Montgomery Clift was laid to rest here after he died of a heart attack in his Manhattan townhouse in 1966.


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8 Responses to “The burial ground in Prospect Park”

  1. CelestialCharms Says:

    Interesting to find that Mongomery Cliff is buried amongst the Quakers. Now I must look up what was his connection to them and why he is buried there instead of one of the more “popular” NYC area cemeteries.

  2. r185 Says:

    FYI – Clift was from a Quaker family. His gravestone can be seen if you walk up the hill along the right side fence (as you face the entrance). I seem to recall that his grave faces the other direction, so you have to keep turning back to see it. It’s one or two in from the fence. Finally, the cemetary is open to the public for organized tours (not often, though) and once a year by the cemetary management – call the Prospect Park Alliance for info.

  3. CelestialCharms Says:

    r185…thanks for that info.

  4. The Roving Runner: Prospect Park - Well Blog - Says:

    […] fighting took place. After reaching the top, we ran down the other side of the hill and peeked into a private Quaker cemetery where the actor Montgomery Clift is […]

  5. Riverside Park’s tomb of the Amiable Child « Ephemeral New York Says:

    […] Amiable Child monument may be the only single burial site in a New York City park. The Friends Cemetery, in Prospect Park, has several […]

  6. Eric Says:

    Lucretia Mott’s grave was moved there at some point too. My Quaker girlfriend, and charmingest person on the planet, talked our way in the front gate one time. Very beautiful place.

  7. Greg D. Says:

    Growing up on Parkside Ave. in the 50’s & 60’s I would go to this Cemetery and walking around and tracing the head stones with paper I still have them and about sixty photo that I took from 1960 to 1967. The last time that I went there was around 1973 and alot of the old Grave markers were damage and destroyed by vandals it was very upsetting to see this. And in the 50’s and 60’s there was no fencing around the Cemetery that I could remember. There are Revolutionary graves also there that I had made rubbings of the head stones back in the 60’s

  8. Gail Mottola Says:

    By any chance, Greg, did you trace the headstones of John Sinclair and/or his wife Elizabeth Williams Sinclair? They died early in the 1860’s. Thanks

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