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To: President Donald Trump, The United States House of Representatives, and The United States Senate

Honoring America's Most Unsung Founding Father.

Benjamin Banneker is arguably America's most unsung hero. He is most often referred to as "America's First Black Man of Science." However, the Washington Interdependence Council, administrators of the Banneker Memorial, has elected to refer to him as "A Man of Many Firsts."

Among Banneker's most notable achievements was serving on the team of the first presidential commission, established by President George Washington to help in the survey and design the “Federal City" as the new capitol of the nation; but this was just one of his many trailblazing contributions to America and the world. He also:

Engineered the first all American made clock;

Authored amongst America's first almanacs;

Was America's first high profile Black Abolitionist;

Was among the first to discuss the prospect of intelligent
life forms existing on other planets;

Was the first to document the 17 year locust cycle;

Originated the formula for what is now called the
"Reverse Mortgage," allowing the elderly to live out
their lives in comfort;

Served as the progenitor of the idea for a U.S. Dept. of Peace,
which is currently being pursued by Rep. Dennis Kucinich, and which led to the establishment of the U.S. Institute of Peace in the nation’s capitol;

Authored America's first publicly documented Protest Letter
to then Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson, condemning the Declaration of Independence as disingenuous as it did not include slaves and other oppressed persons;

Was the first farmer noted for utilizing water irrigation and crop rotation as planting techniques; and

Was America's first publicly known black astronomer; mathematician, scientist, publisher, surveyor, and planner.
He was indeed "A Man of Many Firsts."

Should you Google Mr. Banneker's name, you will find that millions of entries are propagated. To us this represents a groundswell of silent support and recognition which needs to culminate with a suitable world class memorial at the site already commemorating him along the L'Enfant Plaza/Banneker Overlook Park site in the nation's capitol.

Please contact your members of Congress, President Obama and other official offices such as the National Capitol Memorial Commission to voice your support for this memorial. The Washington Interdependence Council has been stagnated by others who wish to desecrate his memorial by putting other memorials, museums and/or commercial interests there; and
Americans need to voice our outrage at this egregious act of injustice. Only then will the Washington Interdependence Council be able to continue its now 15 year journey of meeting daunting milestones to succeed in upgrading the Banneker Memorial to a world class memorial, as he, and our children, so richly deserve.

Why is this important?


We need your help, as conscientious citizens, to stop impediments to having Banneker Overlook Park from being upgraded to a world class memorial by the Washington Interdependence Council. Our non-profit civic agency was authorized to establish the Banneker Memorial within the monumental core of the nation's capitol on November 6, 1998, with the enactment of P.L. 105-355.

In September, 2010, Senator Roland Burris introduced bill S.3886, as an amended re-authorization to the original bill, with the only changes being two caveats calling for: 1) the statue of Banneker to be placed inside of Banneker Overlook Circle, and 2) the Benjamin Banneker Institute of Math & Science to be also placed inside of Banneker Overlook Park, aka, U.S. Reservation 719, at the southern terminus of the L'Enfant Plaza corridor.

This site is sandwiched between the Mall and the southwest waterfront, with the waterfront undergoing a $2 billion renovation; and the Mall a $140 million renovation, all due for completion circa 2016. This is also the target date for the completion of the Banneker Memorial, in concert with the overall redesign of the area which has been renamed the new EcoDistrict.

The reason the legislation made these two amendments to its original language is because everyone now wants to usurp this commemorative park for their own designs now that the area is being totally overhauled to become the new Cultural Center of the nation's capitol, tying the Mall and the new multi-billion dollar tri-state waterfronts together, with new and exciting cultural and real estate developments underway.

Our organization worked arduously to secure a $138 million U.S. Dept. of Transp., TEA21 grant, disbursed entirely to DDOT, underwriting the basic renovation of the subject area to "make way for the Banneker Memorial" as stated in our Memorandum of Agreement with us and the partnering governmental agencies in January, 2000.

However, the conspiracy by developers and others wishing to usurp the site is to sabotage, malign and destroy our agency, rendering us incapable of continuing our mission, so that we may walk away quietly into the night; enabling others to benefit
from our 15 years of work and to siege the coveted site.

In doing so, after more than two centuries of exclusion from proper recognition as a Founding Father, Mr. Banneker would continue to not receive the accolades he deserves as a colonial American hero, and our years of sacrifices and meeting daunting milestones will be lost forever.

Our agency has also aspired to have Banneker's legacy serve
to inspire our youth to believe that they can master the STEM disciplines; and for the Benjamin Banneker Institute of Math & Science Technology to serve as a prestigious academy to train our youth as leaders in the STEM disciplines at this coveted location, across from the new waterfront.

Banneker Overlook Park is now 40 years old. It was established in 1971 when it was officially named in his honor as a result of the advocacy work of noted historian, Louise Hutchinson. We recently honored her, and commemorated the 40th Anniversary of this park during Black History Month.

We can only continue on this commemorative path by having bill S.3886 redropped and passed by Congress or for President Obama to exercise his power of Executive Order by passing it into law. The bill does not call for funding, and with the continued support of conscientious American citizens, we can succeed with this important initiative. We thank you in advance for your support.



2024-03-04 03:30:35 -0500

25 signatures reached

2020-05-08 19:59:48 -0400

10 signatures reached