Civil Rights Monument

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The push for a proposed civil rights monument has new life in Thomas County. The proposal was shot down by the County Commission in July, but a motion by one county commissioner is putting the monument back on the board's radar.

Thomasville resident Jack Hadley points to a location on the Thomas County Courthouse lawn, saying it's the ideal place to honor local civil rights leaders.

Jack says, "Around the courthouse, that's where the struggle was fought at, and so the appropriate place to put it is here on the courthouse ground."

Hadley says this proposed monument would honor six local African-Americans instrumental in establishing the county's voting districts, a movement that he says led to black representation in Thomas County government during the 1970s.

Hadley's proposal to add a civil rights monument was shot down by commissioners last month, but behind the wishes of Commissioner Robert Holton, the commission will establish a committee to further explore the proposed monument.

Robert Holton says, "I saw a lot of positive opportunities to make a better place and better community to live in, and bring the community, number one, together."

Thomas County Commission Chairman Josh Herring says the commission isn't in opposition of the civil rights monument, just to its proposed location on the courthouse lawn.

Josh Herring says, "Most of what has been placed on the courthouse lawns are in respect to veterans or World War II or Vietnam. We don't have any individual monuments or individuals on the courthouse lawn, and I think that there's probably just some things that we need to discuss."

Commission Chairman Josh Herring is in charge of selecting the members of the committee that will further explore the possibility of the proposed monument. He says he will establish a monument committee in about a month.

Money for the monument would all come through private funding.