From left, Rep. Bobby Scott, D-Va.; Mayor Molly Ward, Hampton, Va.; Interior Secretary Ken Salazar; watch President Barack Obama sign a Proclamation to designate Fort Monroe, in Hampton, Va., a National Monument under the Antiquities Act, in the Oval Office, Nov. 1, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
From Wil LaVeist of The Wil LaVeist Show: Hampton is Black America’s Ellis Island
In a ceremony at the White House yesterday, President Barack Obama confirmed Fort Monroe as a national monument, saying it was all about “preserving our nation’s treasures.” It is the first time he has used the Antiquities Act to create a national monument.
Now the site ought to be the location for the proposed National Slavery Museum, if the museum is going to be built at all. The museum, the vision of former Virginia Gov. Douglas Wilder, the nation’s first elected black governor, is in bankruptcy court. Old Point Comfort, the site of Fort Monroe, is where the first African indentured servants arrived in English speaking America in 1619. It’s also the location where slaves began to gain their freedom in mass during the Civil War in 1861, becoming known as the Contraband Slaves.
Read more by the Daily Press: It’s official – President Obama confirms Fort Monroe park designation
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