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Georgetown Memorial Park project a step closer with groundbreaking

December 7, 2016 GMT

The Georgetown Memorial Park steering committee took a significant step in building the park which will highlight the area’s contributions to the Underground Railroad with a groundbreaking event Tuesday. The groundbreaking highlighted the transfer of ownership of the property from Royer Corporation Chief Executive Officer Roger Williams and his wife, Jane Williams, to the Walnut Street Initiative. The donation was made in memory of Jane Williams’ brother, Guy Kitchens, who helped to re-establish the Royer Corporation in 1977. Walnut Street Initiative steering committee member Connie Partington said the Georgetown Memorial Park - once completed - will honor more than 20 local conductors on the Underground Railroad. A centerpiece of the park will feature a bronze bust of George DeBaptiste, who worked with the Underground Railroad during his time in Madison and in Detroit, Mich. The bust is being created by nationally known artist Ed Hamilton of Louisville, Ky. Other bronze plaques through the park will honor other conductors and allow Madisonians, as well as children and other historic tourists to learn of the local significance residents had in the Underground Railroad movement. The steering committee continues to work toward a $238,000 goal for the park, which will be built in the space of a currently unused concrete parking lot. Donations for the park may be sent to the Walnut Street Initiative, c/o Connie Partington, 719 N. Walnut St., Madison, IN 47250.