Article Courtesy of The
By Cindy Swirko
Published April 3, 2021
The Haile Plantation Golf and Country Club has been rechristened as Hawkstone
Country Club, jettisoning a name that is linked to a homestead and farm built on
Hawkstone General Manager Terry Cross does not directly mention the connotation
of the word “plantation” or the history of the name in a note he wrote to
members about the name change.
“Our new name and logo was thoughtfully designed to incorporate many of the
natural surroundings seen throughout the property. The Red-Shoulder Hawk can be
seen soaring among the majestic oaks and natural limestone rock formations
throughout the golf course,” Cross wrote. “With this change, our identity and
character are more clearly apparent not only in our name, but in our iconic logo
representation as well.”
The company for whom Cross works could not be reached for comment on whether
the word “plantation” was a factor in the decision.
Haile is named after the actual 1800s homestead of Thomas and Serena Haile,
who moved to the county from South Carolina and brought about 56 enslaved
people with them.
The homestead and a visitors' center, which is west of the development on
Archer Road, has been preserved and are open to the public at various times.
Today, Alachua County is home to descendantsof some of the people enslaved
by the Haile family.
Tatanya Peterson, left, who spent 13 years researching her family history,
and Karen Kirkman, right, with the Historic Haile Homestead, point out the
plantations in the area that were associated with the Haile family during
the grand opening of the exhibit "Reclaiming Kin: Once Lost, Now Found"
which was displayed at the homestead west of Gainesville in February 2020.
Several club members said Tuesday they agree with the change.
“I think it’s a good thing,” said Tami Moore while watching over children in
the pool. “If it’s hurting people, I’m OK with the change. It doesn’t bother
me to change it and I’d rather not have the negative connotation.”
Added a man about to head off for a round of golf, “They can call it
whatever they want. It doesn’t matter to me.”
Yet in one survey, most people wanted to keep the name of the entire
Some residents of the 2,600-household community off Tower and Archer roads
last year launched an effort to change the name and drop “plantation.”
Haile has three different homeowners associations — Haile, Haile West and
the Haile Village Center.
Leland Management, which covers the Haile West association, surveyed its
residents. About 61% opposed the change.
“I think there are a lot of people who think it should change and a lot of
people who think it’s not worth bothering and don’t understand the issue,”
said Maggie Labarta, who favors a change.
A grid with an overview of the survey provides general reasons cited by
people who want to keep the name and those who want it changed.
For instance, residents opposed to the change said there is nothing
inherently evil about the word and that “while some plantations used slaves,
many did not.”
Those in favor of a change contend that residents have to look beyond the
original intent of the name and understand that such names have a “negative
and painful impact on people of color and particularly the African American
members of the community at large.”