Charlottesville Drops Holiday Celebrating Thomas Jefferson's Birthday

Posted: Jul 03, 2019 7:46 AM
Charlottesville Drops Holiday Celebrating Thomas Jefferson's Birthday

Source: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Charlottesville will no longer officially celebrate Thomas Jefferson’s birthday, instead swapping it out to recognize the emancipation of slaves.

By a 4-1 vote on the Charlottesville, Va. City Council, April 13 will no longer honor the nation's third president, who was the author of the Declaration of Independence and founder of the University of Virginia, which is located in Charlottesville, all because he was a slave owner.

At a city council meeting on Monday evening, councilors voted to remove the day as a city holiday.

To replace it, Freedom and Liberation Day has been declared a holiday on March 3. It's to commemorate the day enslaved people in Charlottesville were officially emancipated by U.S. troops at the end of the Civil War. [...]

Adding Freedom and Liberation Day was a separate vote and was voted on unanimously. (WHSV)

The one city council member to object said refusing to recognize his birthday won’t change history.

"Doing away with Thomas Jefferson's birthday doesn't do away with the history," said Kathy Galvin. "That birthday is still here. What he has done in the past is there."

Many social media users objected to the move.