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Anonymous donor gives $100K to Black History and Heritage Committee

An anonymous donation aims to bolster efforts of a local group to preserve and raise awareness about black history in Winchester and Clark County.

Joyce Morton, president of the Winchester Black History and Heritage Committee, announced this week that the committee is the recipient of a $100,000 donation administered on behalf of an anonymous donor by the Blue Grass Community Foundation.

According to a letter announcing the donation, “the donation is to support the effort of achieving equality for the black community of Winchester.”

The committee gathered Saturday on the steps of the Clark County Courthouse to commemorate the donation with a check presentation.

Morton said the committee chose the courthouse steps because of its role in the “Of Thee I Sing” public art project.

The project “represented the real story of Daniel, a biracial boy separated from his mother and sold into slavery on the steps of the Clark County Court House steps at age 7,” Morton wrote in an email. “The project was a reminder of the past, shared the value of family and the hope that comes from acknowledging our shared humanity.”

Morton said the benefactor’s reason for the donation reinforces the committee’s mission.

“The WBHHC’s mission is to enrich the lives of Winchester’s residents and visitors, to foster communication, understanding and to stimulate appreciation for the diversity of the African American community experience by promoting cultural entertainment, racial pride and unity,” Morton wrote. “Remembering Ida B. Wells Barnett: The way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them. Our aim is to be beacons of light and agents of change in this land of race, class and culture divide.”

Morton said the donation will allow the committee to continue its mission in the community.

“The Winchester Black History and Heritage Committee expresses their deepest gratitude to the anonymous Blue Grass Community Foundation benefactor for the big-hearted grant,” she said. “We will continue to strive for the day when diversity is no longer absent from America’s vision for the future and pray that it will come a time when race, class and culture will be inclusive in ways that will offer opportunities for all people.”