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News Conference ~ Proposed Resolution Negro Hill Cemetery ~

Sunday, May 22, 2011
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Event Type:
Press Conference
michael harris
Location Details:
News Conference ~ Sunday 2:00 p.m. ~ May 22, 2011
Malonga Casquelourd Center
1428 Alice Street
Oakland, CA 94612

Working Draft ~ Proposed Resolution
Negro Hill Cemetery
El Dorado County, California

Whereas, Negro Hill, California was established in 1848, by people of African descent who migrated from the States of Virginia, Massachusetts, Georgia, North Carolina and from many other places yet to be discovered through primary source documentation of governmental archives, private insurance records, ship manifests, genealogy records and oral traditions, and

And Whereas, high above the confluence of the North Fork and South Fork of American River, “a peninsula of granite and quartz infused with gold” they created a community destined to become one of the largest towns of the American River Gold Mining District, site of home of the California Gold Rush. Negro Hill, California bagan as a welcoming community of all races, ethnicities and religions yearning for a greater measure of freedom, and

Whereas, the Civil Usage House, Negro Hill Town Hall, served as a regional center to discuss civic responsibility, community service and racial justice. Negro Hill Methodist Church and Negro Hill Public School attracted multiethnic members and students that challenged the racial prejudice of the day, and

Whereas, Negro Hill, California was an early home to a young Leland Stanford, Stanford University and a young Charles Crocker, Central Pacific Railroad and home to one of the largest China towns in early California History. In 1856, the community of Mormon Island suffered a catastrophic fire, and many residents who were terrorized crossed over Shaw Bridge on the South Fork of the American River and were welcomed into the surrounding Negro Hill community, and

Whereas, in 1863, during the U.S. Civil War, the peninsula region of Negro Hill, then part of Placer County, was annexed by El Dorado County through State Legislature under the guideance of then Governor Leland Stanford. By the end of the California Gold Rush Era the natural flora and fauna of the American River Basin suffered ongoing environmental challenges following commercial gold mining operations. The Negro Hill Ditch Company helped provide a year round pristine water source, an interconnected conveyance system that successful brought the regional pioneer agriculture communities together; elements of that public works project are still operational today, and

Whereas, the Flood Control Act of 1944 provided authorization for Folsom Reservoir on the American River to provide for public safety to the regional community. The planning and construction of Folsom Dam began after the close of World War II with a plethora of national, state and local government agencies supporting small, medium and large private contractors to build Folsom Dam and Reservoir, and

Whereas, many Gold Rush Era cemeteries and individual graves were reinterred at Mormon Island Relocation Cemetery in 1954, including 36 found at Negro Hill Cemetery. The incorrect foul and racist description replaced the correct name of Negro Hill Cemetery and today the egregious human and civil rights violations continue, and

Whereas, May 2011, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers accepted responsibility and released volumes of original records from 1951 to 1961 showing the incorrect name this 50th Anniversary of the notarized transfer of title from the Secretary of the Army to the Chair of the County of El Dorado Board of Supervisors, May 1961, and

Whereas, in 1998, El Dorado County Cemetery Commission led by Sue Silver attempted to change the grave markers and was not given authority to do so by the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors. Chuck Caines and George Chan, Jr. first brought knowledge of the 36 grave markers to the community of African Americans. The Negro Hill Burial Ground Project was established and has built a national network of "united nations" volunteers and professionals consultants seeking a positive resolution that ensures “Dignity and Respect” for all early California Pioneers and especially those of African descent, today referred to as "Niggers" while preserving authentic history of Negro Hill, California for future generations, and

Whereas, on April 26, 2011, members of the Stockton Black Leadership Council, Stockton NAACP, Church of God in Christ, and Wose Community Church through the Negro Hill Burial Ground Project were denied the opportunity to make a full presentation before the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors yet spoke briefly during “information open forum.” The Board chair and a majority of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors members acknowledge no cognition to the very existence of the 36 grave markers that read, Unknown, Moved by Nigger Hill Cemetery by the U.S. Government in 1954, and

Whereas, it is our proposal that the Negro Hill Burial Ground Project and many international sponaors and supporters, this United Nations International Year for People of African Descent, be allowed to provide 36 pillowed, highly polished granite grave markers, installed by cemetery industry professionals on or near July 4, 2011 and cooperatively expand our working stakeholder group to erect a suitable monument with agreeable language through mediated consensus process by the U.S. Department of Justice. Together, we will host an international celebration, lead by our Native Miwok elders as part of our sacred African ceremony for the souls of our ancestors, including full United States Military Honor inviting the Interior Secretary, Education Secretary, Agriculture Secretary, Secretary of the Army and the President of the United States of America, and

Whereas, the Negro Hill Burial Ground Project and our fiscal sponsors will provide all funding and resources necessary toward fulfilling our civic responsibility to help bring forth “Dignity and Respect” for all California Pioneers and especially those of African descent, in a way that can bring closure and begin a new way forward, healing the hurt and injured, at no cost to El Dorado County, the State of California or the United States of America, and

Be it resolved, on this day May 24, 2011 the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors to enact this resolution on behalf of the citizens of the Great State of California and the United States of America.

~ Draft III ~
Added to the calendar on Sun, May 22, 2011 7:40AM
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