Carrboro’s Truth Plaque Community Task Force unveiled its final project Tuesday evening — a ‘truth plaque’ mounted outside Carrboro Town Hall. The plaque gives context to the town’s history and its naming after Julian Carr, the same man who read the dedication speech for Silent Sam.
The task force has been working on the project for nine months, and the final proposal was approved by the Carrboro Board of Aldermen on Feb. 5. The board agreed to fund the plaque up to $5,000, with any leftover funds going to future historical plaque projects.
Board of Aldermen Member Jacquelyn Gist introduced the plaque to a group of residents at its unveiling.
“We’re here today because truth matters, and we live in an era where truth is fluid sometimes, but truth matters,” Gist said.
She added that the aim of the plaque is to tell the history of Carrboro in a way that’s accurate for all town residents, and that the task force stemmed from the Charlottesville protests and ensuing attention on Silent Sam at UNC.
“Telling the truth during an era when there’s a rise in racism and a rise in hatred is even more important,” Gist said.
The plaque traces back to the origins of Carrboro from the late 19th century, when it was unofficially called West End and Lloydville. The town was incorporated and called Venable in 1911, but renamed after Carr two years later.
“He was also an active and influential participant in Jim Crow era efforts to create a system of racial segregation," the plaque reads. "Although the town continues to bear his name, the values and actions of Carr do not represent Carrboro today."