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Julia Wesson's Fundraiser:

Preserve History at Greenfield Preston Plantation

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BENEFITING:

Julia Wesson

THE STORY:

Here in Botetourt County, Virginia, we have a cause that is uniting African Americans and white people, all who care about our history and our roots. Descendants of slaves risk losing a place where their ancestors toiled and died, and then were buried in unmarked graves. Others see that this last vestige of their ancestor's (Col. Preston's) plantation, will be changed forever. All of us, of every racial background, believe that leaving slave quarters intact will remind everyone of the evils of slavery, and the role of slaves in building our country. Col. William Preston purchased Greenfield Plantation in 1763. He started his family life, there, and was a pivotal figure in the American History saga, involving the French and Indian War, the American Revolution, and the Lewis and Clark expedition. Today, our county government wants to rip away what's left...the slave quarters and the kitchen building...salvaged after the mansion burned down in 1959. After removing historic buildings, the county intends to build a giant "shell" building, with a parking lot for speculative economic development. Why not build on a different spot on this vast parcel of land? We have no idea. Concerned citizens have formed a non-profit organization. We're all working together to stop the county from removing the buildings. Once we do this, we'll conduct archeological investigation, and then restore existing buildings to their original conditions. The spot has a majestic vista on exquisite land. We envision a place where people can visit, and see how slaves lived and worked. We want slave descendants to have this place, to visit unmarked graves, and honor their ancestors. We need funds for mounting legal costs, archaeology, and restoration. Ideally, in time, we can build a replica of the plantation mansion, so people can see where Col. Preston started his family, and helped to shape Virginia and the country.

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