On July 25, dozens of supporters and protestors sat in for the third official meeting at the Northside Regional Library that discussed a potential name change of the library system. CBS 19 reported on the heated 45 minute public comment period.
One man, dressed as Thomas Jefferson himself, claimed that the former president did not have children with Sally Hemings, a woman he enslaved, and that he attempted to abolish slavery, according to tweets from community member Molly Conger, who was present at the meeting. Click to see the photo.
Reclaimed Roots Descendants Alliance, an organization for Charlottesville residents who have lineage with those enslaved in the area, were among the early individuals to call for the name change in May. The change wouldn’t erase the history of Jefferson, they say. But keeping his name on public libraries would continue to hurt minority communities.
In order to make a change, each participating locality would need to agree. JMRL member localities include Charlottesville and the counties of Albemarle, Greene, Louisa and Nelson. Louisa and Greene have already passed resolutions against the name change.
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