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Lemon Project seeks input on campus memorial for African Americans

William & Mary’s Lemon Project is exploring ways to memorialize the enslaved and free Africans and African Americans who helped build and maintain the College prior to the U. S. Civil War and is looking for input from the campus and local communities.

The Lemon Project’s Committee on Memorialization is hosting two community forums to gather ideas: one at 7 p.m. April 11 in the Great Hall of the Wren Building and another on April 20 at 6:30 p.m. in room 127 of the Stryker Building, located at 412 North Boundary St. in Williamsburg. People may also submit feedback on the Lemon Project website.

The Lemon Project is an ongoing research initiative launched in 2009 to explore William & Mary’s involvement in slavery and its ongoing relationship with the African-American community.

Jody Allen, visiting assistant professor of history and managing director of the Lemon Project, and Ed Pease, instructor of architectural design, are leading the Committee on Memorialization. The effort grew out of a class, Memorialization of the Enslaved at William & Mary, that Allen and Pease co-taught in 2014. In that class, students designed a variety of potential campus memorials – from physical structures to online exhibits.

The committee will submit a proposal to the president and provost later this year.