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Lankford pushes for Black Wall Street monument designation

The 1921 Black Wall Street Memorial outside the Greenwood Cultural Center.
Ben Abrams
The 1921 Black Wall Street Memorial outside the Greenwood Cultural Center.

Oklahoma's senior U.S. senator would like to see Greenwood in league with protected American landmarks like the Statue of Liberty.

Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) authored Senate Bill 3543 with Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ). The proposal seeks to establish the Greenwood neighborhood, known as Black Wall Street, as a national monument. That would mean support from the National Park Service to preserve the area's history.

Lankford testified before the Senate Energy Subcommittee on National Parks Wednesday morning to help garner support for the bill, which he said is important to remembering Greenwood's past, especially the 1921 Race Massacre.

“It’s critical to note that, in addition to the hundreds of Black Wall Street residents that were killed, the Greenwood neighborhood was burned to the ground," Lankford said.

Lankford also said monument status for the neighborhood "will serve as a catalyst for the resurgence of this economy and cultural hub of Tulsa."

The bill is supported by the Black Wall Street Coalition, a group of several Greenwood organizations and businesses.

Ben Abrams is a news reporter and All Things Considered host for KWGS.
Check out all of Ben's links and contact info here.