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Wilder refers to Fredericksburg as ‘elsewhere’ in pitch to build slavery museum in Richmond
Former Gov. L. Douglas Wilder has an opinion piece in today’s Richmond Times-Dispatch calling for the construction of a slavery museum in the state’s capital city.
In it, he reviews the history of his proposal for a slavery museum in Virginia, noting that he first thought of building it in Jamestown and then approached Richmond.
“The City of Richmond then became the first local government we approached with our interest in locating the slavery museum there. For reasons yet unknown, the city did not act upon our offered suggestion. The decision was then made, upon a consultant’s advice, to locate elsewhere.”
That “elsewhere” would be the city of Fredericksburg.
Wilder negotiated with city officials for support and received 38 acres from the Silver Cos. in Celebrate Virginia South for the museum, which never materialized, possibly because he was focused elsewhere.
While museum executive directors were to be fundraising and trying to build interest in and lay the groundwork for the museum, Wilder was mayor of Richmond. He served in that role from 2005-2009.
Today, that land is in the process of being sold to a group of investors planning to relocate the minor league Hagerstown Suns to Fredericksburg. That proposal includes construction of a privately financed stadium and a facility for baseball, softball and other sport tournaments and training led by New Jersey-based Diamond Nation.
The Suns hope to be in place for the start of the 2015 season.
Wilder offers this contact information in today’s guest opinion: firstname.lastname@example.org.