Last night as I was trying to decide how to write this letter, I took a walk in the Gloucester Colonial Courthouse Circle. I stood for a while looking at and reading the memorial to Medal of Honor recipient, James Daniel Gardner. Sergeant Gardner was an African American Union soldier honored for his bravery in battle in 1864, fighting to preserve the United States of America. This memorial was erected to him by Gloucester County in 2005.
A few yards away in the center of the circle is a tall stone memorial honoring the Confederate soldiers from Gloucester County who died defending the states’ rights to continue to hold people like Sgt. Gardner and his family and descendants in enslavement. There is something very wrong with this picture.
During the era of enslavement, Black families were bought and sold like cattle. Families were destroyed as family members were sold “up the river.” They were treated as less than human and counted as less than human. ...
To view the rest of this article, you must log in. If you do not have an account with us, please subscribe here.