I spend a lot of time thinking about why the past matters. I know it does, but sometimes it’s difficult to put it into words. As part of an independent research project, I located where a Civil War era whipping post once stood. It was located in the yard of the county jail at the corner of Tryon and Sixth Street in Charlotte. Countless slaves were publicly whipped there. Should this fact be memorialized somehow? How?
Seeing these messages on campus reminded me that others were thinking about these issues as well. How should we address Davidson’s own history of racial injustice? To what degree are we bound by our collective history?
For a closer look at the historical forgetting of the Charlotte whipping post, check out my research paper!