After much public outrage, the 36 gravestones that bore the N-word in a California Gold Rush town will be replaced.
The graves held the bodies of Black pioneers who moved to El Dorado Hills Gold Rush. When planning to build a dam in Negro Hill, the original location of the graves, the government moved the bodies.
In the process of moving however, the following offensive sentence was not removed: “Unknown. Moved from &#**@% Hill Cemetery by U.S. Government—1954."
The original proposal to remove the term gave the responsibility to the California Prison Industry Authority, but some in the community were offended, as they thought the Black community should also be a part of the process.
"We would love for them to help us, we would love for you to help us, anybody to help us. But we would like to be the leading agent, to show what we want,” said Ralph White, a community member who gave his input to the deciding supervisors, reported the Associated Press.
Some have suggested that a monument be made to explain the history of the graves. Others have suggested that the original headstones be placed in museums. Advocacy groups would also like polished gray-granite headstones to replace the worn-concrete slabs.
(Photo: ASSOCIATED PRESS, AP)