The city of Fayetteville will soon have a new sense of identity. The Fayetteville City Council has decided to do away with a logo it’s used for more than 20 years in favor of a more modern symbol.
The old logo was a likeness of the official city seal; a round emblem with the Market House as the centerpiece. It’s been associated with city government for decades. But it hasn’t had universal acceptance.
Some African American leaders have been offended because the Market House was the site of occasional slave sales in antebellum Fayetteville. City Councilman Chalmers McDougald refused to wear a city lapel pin because it too contained a likeness of the Market House. But he acknowledged the historic significance of the building. The Council asked the Fayetteville/Cumberland Human Relations Commission to solicit thoughts and ideas from the general public with an eye toward changing the seal. And a private contractor was retained to solicit public dialogue.
City Councilman Ted Mohn took it from there. He noted that the demographic makeup of Fayetteville has changed remarkably since the current Market House logo was adopted in 1993. Our city is one of the most diverse communities in the nation. Large-scale annexations of west side suburbs took in thousands of black families.
“I must thank the entire council for their honest, thoughtful and respectful public conversation on the city seal and logo,” said Mohn.
Members of the Human Relations Commission agreed with Mohn’s tact. He found, as Up & Coming Weekly reported earlier, that there are only a few official instances when the corporate seal must be used. Since the logo containing the Market House is just that — an unofficial logo — it could be disposed of. The official corporate seal won’t be changed.
“The Market House is part of our city’s history and we must acknowledge and understand our fellow citizens have good and bad emotions associated with the building,” Mohn observed, agreeing with McDougald. Council intends to adopt a resolution declaring the modern script emblem as the city’s official logo.
It will likely take a while for the city to rid itself of the emblem. It has been stamped everywhere over time, from official letterhead stationery to roll out trash containers. It’s all over the city’s website that will require some redesigning. Stationery won’t be updated until current supplies run out. Large sculpted logos hang on the wall in city council chambers and on an exterior wall at police headquarters.