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Lewes City Council Defers Vote on Street Name Change to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

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LEWES, Del.- The Lewes City Council decided to defer the vote on renaming or making a honorific name for West Fourth Street as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard at Monday night's council meeting. 

The Friendship Baptist Church has requested to rename West Fourth Street for over two years. The Rev. George Edwards of Friendship Baptist Church requested the name change in 2017.  The city says it is open to the name change, but the logistics need to be worked out. The idea was on the city council's agenda in November, but was postponed to get more public comment.

Last week, Lewes City Council members met with the community to discuss the honorary name change or the complete renaming of West Fourth Street to Dr. Martin Luther King Boulevard. Members of the community read letters at the meeting stating why Lewes should be remembered by its black history and they say the name change will do so.

"We have a lot of museums in the town of Lewes, but very little of the African American history and I think this decision tonight is very important considering," said Merry Mcrae, a member of Friendship Baptist Church. 

Many expected the council to make a decision on Monday night. The council deferred the vote, saying that it will send out letters to the public about the possible name change. 

"People do it all the time, whether it has something to do with their job or another type of move. So I think that's a very small thing to have to do in order to have a street changed."

Cora Washington is 96, one of the oldest people in Lewes. She said she has lived in Lewes all her life and would like to see the street name change in her lifetime. 

"This was always a colored development, all down Fourth Street, all down this way. If the name would be changed, I would agree with it," said Washington. 

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