Why Now? Why Me?

Billy Keyserling

After working with partners for more than 18 years to achieve the Country’s Reconstruction Era National Historical Park in his County and a Network of sites beyond, why would a small City Mayor not just declare victory, claim a legacy and move on to other projects? And why would he then walk away from the best job he’s ever had to lay the groundwork for an educational movement?

Fair question indeed.

These among other questions are answered in this book. In short, I chose to not run for re-election so I could invest my time and resources engaging others to take a fresh and deeper look at how we can begin to heal the damaged soul of our Nation. The book is a semi-autobiographical account of why and how I am compelled to inspire a movement to restore the promises of freedom, justice, equality, and civility.

After achieving recognition of some of the many untold stories of Reconstruction through The Reconstruction Era National Historical Park, I realized the fruits of this hard work were only the beginning and not an end. We cracked the door and now it is time to enter. Recognition through the National Park and the Network is a vehicle for learning, teaching, and merging related groups to work together to get back on track to achieve the American dream.

Though this missive is my story and how I have a plan, I hope it will inspire each of you to look in the mirror and think about your past, our collective past, and reflect on how we live today. Perhaps you will then consider how you can help restore the values on which this Nation was built. You may choose to participate in our initiatives, or you may address the issues of history in your own ways.

As the revered WEB Dubois wrote "Either the United States will destroy ignorance or ignorance will destroy the United States." W.E.B. Dubois

So, with many with whom I have worked, we are on a mission. In 2018 I formed “Reconstruction Beaufort: The Second Founding of America” which, now that I have finished my mayoral focus will become my occupation.

Learn about Reconstruction Beaufort.