Federal Agency Changes Creek Name After Inquiry By WBTV - | WBTV Charlotte

Federal Agency Changes Creek Name After Inquiry By WBTV


An apology has been issued from a government agency over a racially charged creek name in Union County.

Back in 1985, we started following this story when the name of what was once called Negro Head Creek was supposed to be changed to Salem Creek.  

Some state and federal agencies did not get the memo, and the old name showed up on several new maps.

The Army Corps of Engineers sent us a statement.

It says they regret the reference to Salem Creek by its former name in the Monroe Connector Bypass Project.

The waters of Salem Creek are generally calm, but anxiety comes over a lengthy a government printed paper trail from state and federal agencies that carry the past name that's regarded as offensive.

Add the name State Representative Kelly Alexander to the list of North Carolina lawmakers who want to know why official documents 27 years later do not reflect the name change From Negro Head Creek to Salem Creek.

"It needs to be corrected, "he said. "This thing should have been changed a long long time ago."

Corrections have been made by the U.S.Army Corps of engineers to its online documents, and Marshville Mayor Franklin Deese calls it a beginning that needs to go further.

He said,"It is a start that's long overdue, but to see that they have at least acknowledged and apologized that they missed it on those maps shows they know it's wrong."

Despite scores of references from at least a half dozen agencies, the question is who will respond next ?

Alexander said that he wants answers from Raleigh.

"I'm going to be in touch with DOT and ask them to follow up and actually make all of the necessary changes on state reference maps." 

A NC DOT spokesperson says the state is looking into the matter.

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