Why has the City considered it important?

(All of these questions were developed in 2017 and answered in 2017 within the context of the process at that time.) 

Slavery is a part of this nation’s history and Fredericksburg has chosen to acknowledge this reality in what it presents to its citizens and the visiting public. Fredericksburg was a town before the Civil War. Were there really many slaves in towns? Urban slavery was quite real. According to the 1840 Census, Fredericksburg had 2,343 white citizens, 1,226 enslaved persons, and 408 free blacks, which made African Americans more than 40 percent of the town’s population.

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1. What is the Slave Auction Block?
2. Why has the City considered it important?
3. Are we absolutely sure it was used an auction block?
4. Is there more than oral tradition to support the assertion that the slave block was actually used to sell people?
5. Why did slave sales end in 1862, instead of 1865 when the Civil War ended?
6. Has anyone previously asked that the slave auction block be removed?
7. What about memorials to Confederates on National Park Service property on Sunken Road and a plaque on City of Fredericksburg property near Smith Run on Cowan Boulevard?
8. Why is it thought to be important to keep the slave auction block in place?
9. Is it possible to determine if the slave auction block is really in its original location?
10. What are the options for the future of the slave auction block?
11. When did the discussion about the slave auction block’s future begin?