Roanoke City Council will vote to change the name of Jackson Park Library and Jackson Park

ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Roanoke city Council is looking into changing the name of Jackson Park Branch Library and Jackson Park. Both are named after Confederate Commander Stonewall Jackson--this comes after the city changed a middle school name last year.

Roanoke City Council is voting next week on changing the names of the Jackson Park Branch Library and Jackson Park.

"I believe they should just keep it the way it is, I mean it's been that way for a very long time and if you go around trying to change too much history, I mean, that's just changing too much," Debra Sweeney, who lives near the library, said.

But this park hasn't always been named after Stonewall Jackson. It was originally called Belmont Park.

"For those who say they don't want to change history, the history is that this was Belmont Park and at some point, the name was changed, so we're just going back to the original name," Bill Bestpitch, a Roanoke City Council Member, said.

If the vote passes, the library will change to Belmont Branch Library and the park will become Belmont Park.

Bestpitch said a name like "Jackson Park" shouldn't be on public property. He said, "If somebody wants to do something on private property to honor Stonewall Jackson or anybody else, that's fine, but it shouldn't be on public property if it makes so many people uncomfortable."

Bestpitch feels confident the council will vote for the name change.

"They named the school across the street, so since they've changed that name, now is the right time to look at changing the name for the park and the library," he said.

Sweeney thinks otherwise. She said, "It's been a very important part of our lives and I believe it should remain that way."