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Payback

By JAZMINE BUNCH

RCNH News Intern

WINTON – The Hertford County Board of Commissioners accepted a new addition to the Judicial Center during their regular meeting here Monday morning.

John Parker, Chairman of the Murfreesboro Historical Commission, stood before the County Commissioners to offer them a pair of schoolhouse benches as a token of appreciation for their generous financial assistance.

“I’m not here today to request any money,” said Parker. “This is a give-back day.”

On December 7, 2015, Parker presented a request for financial assistance to fund the Murfreesboro Historical Commission’s project to publish a book tracing the architectural history of Hertford County. The board approved the request and the creation of “West of the Chowan” ensued.

The Historical Commission was tasked with the project after the Federal Government passed the Historic Preservation Act in 1966, mandating that each state conduct an inventory of its historic places. They enacted this project in the form of a book, which made an impact in the area.

They credit the success of the book to the County Commissioners’ donation.

“In the 53 years our commission has been in effect,” said Parker, “the approval you made of that amount of money and the book that we published was the most successful project ever attempted by the Historical Murfreesboro Commission, and it would not have been completed had it not been for your generous consideration.”

Parker told the board that the Murfreesboro Historical Commission had questions about what they should do with some of the money they had made from the book.

With the help of Sylvia Anderson, Chairman of the Commission’s book committee, the two assessed the needs of the town to see what they could to do to thank the board.

With the approval of the board, they decided to provide a gift that would solve the “lack of seating accommodations in [the] courthouse for the public.”

Parker proposed the gift of a pair of schoolhouse benches to be placed on the second or third floor of the courthouse, where the lack of public seating is most prevalent. Upon the board accepting the gift, Chairman Ronald Gatling extended a personal thank you to Parker and the Commission.

Following a round of acknowledgements from the members of the board, co-chairman John Horton expressed the gratitude the board feels in moments like these.

“It’s good that people know that you can give back,” he said. “This county gives and gives and gives to try to meet the needs of its citizens, and it does us great pleasure when someone gives back to the county.”

According to Parker, the order for the benches would be placed immediately following the Commissioner’s acceptance. The Courthouse will receive its’ new oak benches in a few weeks.