Dudley Farm Historic State Park is now a National Historic Landmark

Published: Dec. 4, 2021 at 4:49 PM EST
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NEWBERRY, Fla. (WCJB) - Dudley Farm Historic State Park in Newberry now has national recognition.

After nearly 20 years, it is officially considered a National Historic Landmark, and plenty of community leaders came out to celebrate the milestone.

It is an authentic working farm that dates back to before the Civil War.

“One of the most exciting things that happened here today, beyond becoming a national historic designation, was the announcement of the moval of the Perkins home. It’s the last remaining structure of an enslaved person here at Dudley Farm,” said Jordan Marlowe, Mayor of Newberry.

In typical small-town fashion, the descendants of the Perkins family where there to celebrate.

“That house was my great, great grandparents who lived there,” said Wilma Reid-Camps, descendant of the Perkins family.

The people who drafted the proposal to make this a reality, explained the importance of the full history of Dudley Farm, including slavery.

Garlenda Greene-Grant was one of those residents.

“It just means that it’s a point forward for us to now get African-Americans recognized as well,” said Greene-Grant, whose family has been in Newberry for six generations.

The park is now the 45th National Historic Landmark in Florida.

“Our history is right here with us, so when we have these historical moments, these aren’t things out of the past. We have the grandchildren of the descendants right here among us having these conversations with us,” said Marlowe.

He said this national recognition can provide more opportunities for grants, hopefully making this park the tourist attraction in Newberry.

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