Petition calls for a monument for African American contributions

Convicts, many of them African-Americans who had been sentenced for minor crimes, were used to build the railroad tracks in Western North Carolina. Some of them lost their lives in the process. Photograph originally published by T.H. Lindsey as a postcard approximately 1892.

In a related issue, UNC Asheville’s Center for Diversity Education is spearheading efforts to have a new monument constructed in Pack Square, in tribute to the contributions and history of Buncombe County’s African-Americans.

According to a petition circulating in support of this effort, the restoration plans for the Vance Monument are an opportunity to stop the pattern of commemorating certain facets of our history while ignoring the experience of other communities. Addressed to the Asheville City Council and Buncombe County Commission, the petition asserts that, with the abundance of Confederate heritage markers in downtown Asheville, it is time for there to be one dedicated to the county’s African Americans.

Read more in Daniel Hall’s story, “Petition calls for a monument for African American contributions.”

About Carrie Eidson
Multimedia journalist and Green Scene editor at Mountain Xpress. Part-time Twitterer @mxenv but also reachable at Follow me @carrieeidson

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