Your Views: Don’t erase our history

Your Views: Don’t erase our history
T.C. Williams High School. (Photo/Cody Mello-Klein)

To the editor:

After reading Jim McElhatton’s proselytizing article, “Poetic justice,” which was tantamount to an endorsement of one candidate’s name as a replacement for T.C. Williams High School, I felt compelled to present a rebuttal. T.C. Williams actually had many achievements which led the school board in the early 1960s to name its brand new, state-of-the-art high school after him.

I do not approve of changing the name of either T.C. Williams or Matthew Maury School. Maury Elementary has been on Russell Road since 1929. Did you know that Commodore Maury was instrumental in the establishment of the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland in 1845?

Isn’t it interesting that both Williams and Commodore Maury have strong ties to the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia – the West Point of the South? Superintendent Williams graduated from VMI in the class of 1915 during the World War I era.

Maury taught physics and astronomy at VMI after the Civil War. There is a Maury House at VMI that has been used as a faculty residence since its construction. It’s the commandant’s quarters.

This changing of school names is erasing our local culture and social history. It’s an affront to all the proud alumni of these long-standing institutions.

-Greg Paspatis, T.C Williams Class of ‘78