Potomac Street Names Now Honor Black Community Pioneers

Three streets in Potomac no longer carry the names of Confederate generals. On Friday, the street signs for J.E.B Stuart Road, J.E.B. Stuart Court and Jubal Early Court came down. The new signs bear the the names of two Montgomery County African American community leaders.

J.E.B Stuart Road and J.E.B. Stuart Court were renamed Geneva Mason Road and Court. Jubal Early Court was renamed William Dove Court.

Geneva Mason

Mason lived from 1899 to 1980 and was a prominent community leader in the Scotland community, centered near what is now Seven Locks Road. She was instrumental in rebuilding that community and in its fight against urban renewal efforts in the 1960s.

Dove was an African American man who was born into slavery and was one of the founding members of the Scotland community. He purchased some of the first parcels of land there.

“This is incredible, who would have know, who would have known, after all of her struggles, all the things she went through that we would come to a place and see these two incredible signs,” said Nicole Web, the great, great, great granddaughter of Mason.

County Councilmember Andrew Friedson, who was instrumental in getting the street names changed, spoke Friday as the signs changed. “As we dismantle the structures of institutional racism, we’re also changing the symbols that institutional racism normalizes, like street names,” he said.

An African American community, today Scotland consists of 100 townhomes. Its roots date back to the late 19th century, when former slaves bought land in Potomac.

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Suzanne Pollak

About Suzanne Pollak

Suzanne is a freelance reporter with Montgomery Community Media. She has over 35 years professional experience writing for newspapers, magazines, non-profit newsletters and the web.

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