Letter: Echo House is under attack
Lance Thate, Chairman
Community Organizer, Ron Rawls, apparently hates history.
In 2012, the City of St. Augustine gave the AME Church a building and property known as the Echo House. The building was to be used as a school. Instead, Rawls removed the clay tile roof and sold it for an alleged. sum of $20,000.
After the tiles were sold to a contractor remodeling a bed and breakfast on the bayfront, Rawls put a tarp over the top of the building which appears to have failed over time. One can only imagine the interior damage of the boarded-up building. Now he wants the building demolished!
This historic structure was damaged by Rawls’ own selfish acts.
The Lincolnville Historical Preservation and Restoration Society addressed the City Commissioners at their last board meeting. They wish to preserve the structure, “…because nobody is standing up for African-Americans in Lincolnville,” said Madeline Wise.
There is a possible breach of contract between Rawls and the City of St. Augustine. The conveyance of the building and property was conditional that the property must be used for ‘nonprofit, philanthropic and charitable purposes, otherwise, it must be returned to the city.
The Lincolnville Historical Preservation and Restoration Society should be heard and helped to defeat the troublesome Ron Rawls. He dismissed the Lincolnville citizens with the throw-away line, “I don’t know anything about the group…they haven’t talked to the property owner.” Rawls has indicated he will never give the property back.
Make your voice heard and advocate for the transfer of the property to the black ladies of Lincolnville who consider Echo House their MONUMENT.
Contact Mayor Nancy Shaver at firstname.lastname@example.org