James and Catherine Morney bought this historic African American farm in Hutchins, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, in 1876. It had 120 acres at the time of purchase. After the couple passed away in the 1930s, the land was devoured by fraudulent claims. Eventually, in 1989, Murdine Berry, their great-granddaughter, was successful in suing to regain 80 acres of the family homestead. She refused to sell to developers, maintaining and restoring the property until her death. The property is once again in danger. The county intends to use eminent domain to take the farm in order to build a train line that will cut through the land directly. This culturally important property was recognized by the Texas Senate via Senate Resolution #83 in which they stated 'The Morney-Berry Farm has for many years played an essential role in the life of the African American community in Dallas; since 1865, it has transformed from a residence that once
housed slaveowners to a home bought and owned by former slaves
and passed down to their descendants, who have earned recognition
by the Family Land Heritage Program, which honors families that
have owned or operated a farm for more than 100 years.' Join us in the fight to save this historic black owned farm.
We, the undersigned, urge the state of Texas, Dallas County and all parties concerned to drop their plans to use eminent domain to take over all or a portion of the historic Morney Berry Farm in order to build a train line. We contend that this property is a significant historical site in Dallas County's African American heritage and should be protected as such.
The Save Historic Farm petition to Dallas County City Council was written by Cheri Lindsay and is in the category City & Town Planning at GoPetition.