By Sheyenne Rodriguez
CHAPEL HILL, NC (WTVD) — This morning the NAACP took its Wilmington 10 pardon campaign to Chapel Hill in an effort to prove its case.
The Wilmington 10 were convicted in 1971 of arson and conspiracy. They are now asking Gov. Bev Perdue for a pardon.
The state NAACP says it is opening the entire archive of Wilmington 10 documents, including new files, at the Chapel Hill campus library.
The group showed off the archives that will be a part of the Southern Historical Collection. It all surrounds the Wilmington 10, the group charged with burning a Wilmington store in 1971. Their convictions were overturned by a federal court, and the NC NAACP is trying to get a gubernatorial pardon, which it says will help with an ugly chapter in the state’s history.
“The history of the south too often lies in an unmarked grave, while the celebratory half truths and politically convenient lies, appear to march into immortality,” Duke scholar and NAACP member Dr. Tim Tyson said.
“Governor after governor has refused to pardon,” NC NAACP President Rev. William Barber said. “Too long has the propaganda that the Wilmington 10 had to have done something wrong.”
The group is hoping the governor will make a decision before she leaves office.