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Virginia House Opposes State Song

March 04, 1994|The Washington Post

RICHMOND, Va. — In a symbolic break with the past, the Virginia House of Delegates voted 87 to 9 Thursday to repeal "Carry Me Back to Old Virginia" as the official state song because of its racially offensive lyrics.

The vote was a milestone in the former capital of the Confederacy. After more than two decades of debating the propriety of a song that waxes nostalgic about the days of antebellum slavery, neither house of the General Assembly had ever agreed to do away with it until Thursday.

The House version now goes to the Senate, where its fate is unclear. Last month the Senate voted to rewrite the lyrics to remove some troubling words, but black lawmakers Thursday said that was not good enough.

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