Youngblood, Grove: Rename Negro Mountain after the Hero Nemesis, Not His Race
2/13/2015
HARRISBURG – State Reps. Rosita C. Youngblood (D-Philadelphia) and Seth Grove (R-York) have joined together to introduce a resolution urging the federal government to rename a Somerset County mountain to honor a hero from the French and Indian War.

Youngblood said Negro Mountain, a 30-mile-long ridge of the Allegheny Mountains that spans from Maryland north into Somerset County, took its name from a battle during the French and Indian War. In 1756, a clash broke out between Native Americans and volunteers, including British-born pioneer Thomas Cresap.  According to accounts from that time, a black frontiersman named Nemesis was mortally wounded during the battle. Instead of taking shelter, Nemesis told the remaining members of his party to leave, bravely sacrificing himself so others could retreat to safety.  Youngblood and Grove said that it is time for Nemesis to receive the respect and recognition he deserves for his heroism.

“During a time when people of color were identified more as property than as individuals, it might have seemed a fitting honor to name the site of this battle as ‘Negro Mountain,’” Youngblood said. “Although the term ‘Negro’ may not be seen by some residents of the Commonwealth as a derogatory term, it’s outdated. And, the fact remains that the hero of this battle had a name – Nemesis.”

Grove agrees with Youngblood that it’s time to give Nemesis due recognition. He has been a co-sponsor of previous resolutions seeking to change the mountain’s name.

“This Commonwealth has a long history of recognizing its heroes by name, and Nemesis should not be an exception,” Grove said. “It’s the 21st century. We should take steps to rename the mountain for the man, not the race of the man, who saved the lives of so many.”

Youngblood pointed out that the Pennsylvania Official Transportation and Tourism Map distributed by the Department of Transportation has no reference to Negro Mountain. She said this also highlights the need to change the name of the mountain to something more appropriate for print on official documents.
 
“I understand why ‘Negro Mountain’ isn't listed on any official tourism map,” she said. “I would be embarrassed as well to put that on any official government document that is meant to promote our state.”

The lawmakers said the name change must be approved by the U.S. Geological Survey, an agency within the federal Department of the Interior.

“Plus,” Youngblood added. “How great of a name is ‘Nemesis Mountain?’”

For more information on Grove’s legislative goals visit www.repgrove.com or  www.Facebook.com/RepSethGrove.

Representative Seth Grove
196th  District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact:  Nick Ruffner
nruffner@pahousegop.com
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