Petition created to put up Harriet Tubman monument at Fort Monroe

Posted at 9:16 PM, Jun 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-15 22:31:55-04

FORT MONROE, Va. - One Hampton Roads woman has created a petition to put up a monument of Harriet Tubman at Fort Monroe.

“It's time to tell the whole story as it really was,” Tricia Drummond said.

Drummond lives at Fort Monroe, a place filled with history, including a connection to Tubman.

“Probably the greatest conductor on the Underground Railroad,” she said. “To live here where she was is a privilege and an honor for me.”

According to Fort Monroe officials, Tubman served as both a nurse and cook there during the Civil War.

Last week, Drummond created the petition for the monument for Tubman, which, as of Monday night, has more than 2,100 signatures.

“The time is long overdue,” she said.

The petition comes amid protests following the death of George Floyd and around Confederate monuments in Virginia.

“I would like to be someone who does something good in the midst of all the chaos, and maybe leave a permanent mark, and honor somebody who truly deserved it,” Drummond said.

Officials with the National Park Service and Fort Monroe Authority told News 3 they're open to talking about the effort with Tubman being an important historical figure.

“That's the type of stories which we haven't told a lot about in our culture, and it's time we started to tell those,” Fort Monroe Authority Executive Director Glenn Oder said.

Related: Memorial recognizing first enslaved Africans coming to Hampton

“We want to be a place of inspiration, we want to be a place of commemoration, we certainly want to be a place of healing and we want a place where people all around the community, and the region, and the country can come and feel like their history - our shared history, both positive and negative - is reflected in the truth that we tell,” Kym Hall of the National Park Service told News 3.

Drummond said her goal is to see Tubman commemorated and help many in the years to come.

“It's time for everyone, including little girls of every race, every color, to have some genuine heroes,” Drummond said. “I grew up with Princess Leia as my hero. That's great, but she's not real. Harriet Tubman is the real Princess Leia.”

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