Historic NC plantation ‘closed until further notice’ after controversial Juneteenth event canceled

North Carolina news

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (WJZY) – The Historic Latta Plantation is closed until further notice, Mecklenburg County officials announced on Thursday after a Juneteenth event depicting a fugitive slave owner was canceled.

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation will evaluate how to use the site in an appropriate, forward-thinking way, Mecklenburg County officials said in a statement, released on social media.

This site was previously managed by Historic Latta Place, Inc., a private, not-for-profit organization. Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation is not renewing the contract with Historic Latta Place, Inc. for the funding and operation of Historic Latta Plantation, officials said Thursday.

Historic Latta Place, Inc. was recently under fire for planning a reenactment of a white slave owner being pursued by Union soldiers. The reenactment was scheduled for June 19 – the traditional commemoration date of the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States, known as “Juneteenth.”

The event was quickly canceled. Mecklenburg County said it has “zero tolerance” for programming that does not represent equity and diversity.

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation is assessing the future use of the property while continuing to operate Latta Nature Preserve, including the walking trails and other amenities of the nature preserve.

“Over the next few months, we will evaluate the best path forward for Latta Plantation and its programming, ensuring that the site is utilized in an appropriate, forward-thinking manner,” said Park and Recreation Director W. Lee Jones. “As our review continues, we feel it is in the best interest of the community and the property to close for now until other plans can be announced.”

All previously scheduled and future Historic Latta Plantation programs and operations are canceled, and the house and grounds will remain closed until further notice.

The closures will not affect the Raptor Center, Quest, or other services in the Nature Preserve.

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