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The city of Placerville, California, known as Hangtown by its residents, has voted to remove the noose on its logo.
According to CNN, the city manager believes the logo is only about 40 years old. It depicts a miner and a noose hanging from a tree in the background. It represents California’s Gold Rush and the rise in crime that came with it.
“Murders and robberies became frequent in isolated camps along the American River, and before long, several merchants and miners had lost their poke of gold at knife point,” the city’s website states.
The town became known as Hangtown after an impromptu citizens’ jury agreed to hang a man accused of a crime. Its official name, Placerville, took hold in 1854.
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During a recent city council meeting, the members unanimously voted to remove the noose. It came after more than three hours of pleas from members of the community during a Zoom meeting. Many argued the logo is racist.
“A noose is a symbol of death,” one resident said, according to CNN. “A noose is a symbol of lynching. A noose is a symbol of racism. I think we’re better than that.”
Others argued against removing the logo.
“This world right now is taking inch by inch little pieces of our history and throwing it away,” another resident said. “If we remove this, and the next thing you’re going to do is remove ‘Hangtown’ name itself, in 10-15 years, our kids aren’t going to know anything about it.”