On November 13th, 2018, many people from our community spoke to the board of trustees for the Dixie School District regarding the school name. Attendees spoke both for and against the proposed name change. At the conclusion of the meeting, the 5 member board voted as to whether the actual residents and taxpayers of our 150+ year Dixie School District should be allowed to vote democratically and decide as a community as to whether or not the name of our school and district should be changed.
The outcome of the vote was 4-1: 4 in Favor of a democratic vote within our community, 1 Against (with board member Marnie Glickman Curtis casting the only vote against).
The most compelling speaker of the night was Marge Grow-Eppard, a MIWOK INDIAN from the Sheep Ranch Rancheria in Calaveras County. She is a descendant and tribe member of the same tribe as the Dixie family whom we believe our district could be named after. Learn more about the history of the Dixie Name.
Below is the video of Miwok Marge Grow-Eppard’s Speech…
After her speech, David Curtis husband of board member Marnie Glickman Curtis and vocal advocate to change the name, blurted out to the Miwok “and how do you think the Dixie Miwoks got their name?” He then challenged her to show proof her ancestors were not named by a white man after the confederacy. He obviously has failed to read our history of the Dixie name page or to check the Calaveras census to see that the family had their name for at least 30 years before the civil war and Mary Dixie received her name when she married a man in the Dixie family.
OF INTEREST: Many Miwoks got their colonized names after being baptized by missionaries in the late 1700’s into the early 1800s which predated the Civil War by decades. They have chosen to keep their Christian names for over 200 years and should not be made to feel ashamed of them. Did you know that Marin County is named after the baptized Miwok Chief Huicmuse aka. Chief Marin? Our county proudly took on a colonized Miwok name as should our school district.
Below is a speech given by David Curtis, a “change the name” activist and husband to board member Marnie Glickman Curtis. The speech was given after Miwok Marge Grow-Eppard presented:
After listening to the public speak about their arguments to change or not change the name, the five board members spoke about their feelings on the name change. Four of the members felt as if it was too big of a decision to make without going to our community to hear what they wanted and they felt the best and least expensive way to do this was through an advisory vote on the 2020 ballot.
One lone board member, Marnie Glickman Curtis, gave a speech as to why she was going to be the only board member to vote no for the public vote. One of the reasons she provided was that she felt the KKK and the Koch brothers could come and fund the campaign. Additionally, she went on to say she was concerned right wing extremists would come to San Rafael and create riots where Molotov cocktails are thrown and many could be injured or killed in riots over changing our district and school name.
Below is a video of Marnie Glickman Curtis’s Speech:
Another community member spoke to the board about the actual name Dixie and highlighted the fact that the name “Dixie” had been in existence for 450 years, long before the confederacy. It was mentioned that the name has many meanings to many different people: there are 21 towns named Dixie in the United States, 1 in Australia, and 1 if Africa. There is a Dixie National Forest, other Dixie schools/districts/universities, including one in England named in the 1600’s . Canada has a Dixie transit line and station as well as an outlet mall. Many large and respected businesses (including publicly traded ones as well as Fortune 500 companies) have the name Dixie in them. Thousands of people throughout the world have the first or last name Dixie and are not ashamed of who they are or their name, which includes the Dixie Miwok family from Vallecito, California.
This person also said that in France, the first name Dixie derives from the French word for ten and was used to name the child born 10th in the family. James Miller had 10 children that were all born by the time he built and named the Dixie School.
Her speech was not videotaped but should be noted.
Below is the information board shared at the meeting on numerous places on the internet where the word or name Dixie is used throughout the world in different ways.
Each of the Dixie School District Board Members also spoke on the name issue and their views are shared below:
This additional speech given by board member Mark Schott on the petition process:
Below are more videos of speeches made by Dixie School District Community members who support the We Are Dixie group:
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