How’d the Public Hearing go and what’s next?

Mayor with Rep Clyburn

20 Dec How’d the Public Hearing go and what’s next?

We asked you to come… and you did!  Thank you!

For those who were not able to attend what will prove to be yet another of many historic moments in Beaufort County, the Brick Baptist Church was filled to the brim while some waited patiently outside on the hallowed ground of our unique history.

Two hours proved to be not enough time for all to get a word in. I am sorry.  But those who spoke did so with a strong passion for uncovering the whole truth of Beaufort County’s unique role in what in 2000 then Secretary of Interior Bruce Babbitt  noted as the “beginning of a New America.”

Michael Bouleware Moore, great great grandson of Robert Smalls

Michael Bouleware Moore, great great grandson of Robert Smalls

A woman from St. Helena Island displayed the deed for her great great grandfather’s property, showing that he paid for it disproving the myth we have been taught about slaves being granted “forty acres and a mule.”

Michael Bouleware Moore, the President and CEO of the International African American Museum in Charleston, talked about his great great grandfather Robert Smalls who is  one of Beaufort’s most celebrated citizens.  More importantly he said there are many people who do not know the history made by the unsung heroes of the period, black and white leaders, who fostered the new era transitioning slaves to freedom creating opportunities for most.

Let it be said that it was a great moment in our great community.

 

 

 

 

 

reconstruction forum

Young Leaders of Beaufort students joined in the historic meeting. 

 

Next Steps…

While I am 100 percent confident that our case was made and made extremely well and the Director of the National Park Service agreed about the importance of telling the untold story through the a multi-site monument and the conversation and study it will inspire, it is not yet a done deal.

There is work to be done.  Lawyers for the National Park Service and lawyers for the property owners donating their land/buildings must complete the research and negotiations.  The clock is ticking and the days are limited. But I remain hopeful that we will reach the top on the mountain of work and 2017 will bring a National Reconstruction Monument to Beaufort.

We are less than 100 signatures short of reaching 1500 on the petition.  If you have not already done so please sign and share. If you have signed, please pass on to anyone you know who may not have signed. Sign here!

Want to read more? Report from Packet/Gazette:

Clyburn, Park Service hear overwhelming support for Reconstruction monument