FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WKRN) — Next to 7,000 yards of an immaculate green golf course sits an indigenous mound one might miss in Franklin.
“Today we are here to celebrate making it right,” said Tom Kunesh.
Nearby, Kunesh and a small group of people gathered together for something historic.
“It is…I think extremely rare,” said Kunesh. “I can’t name another conservation easement with a private group and a private business to save native land.”
Southern Land Company owns and operates the Westhaven Golf Club where they will continue to protect two mounds that sit nearby.
“We’re going to facilitate… (and) just have a friendship that says, ‘Hey, we’re going to help cut the grass,'” said Matthew Magallanes. “When you have volunteers come call us and just make sure they have a good experience.”
For over a decade, Magallanes, who serves as vice president of business development for Southern Land Company, has worked with the nonprofit to help preserve these historic mounds.
“It’s very important to a lot of people, and something that 100 years from now it’s going to mean something,” he said.
As both groups came together to celebrate, this occasion brought out emotion from many with the conservancy that fought for years to see this day.
“I know so many places here in Nashville that have been destroyed,” said Kunesh. “With all that destruction, people forget about native history, indigenous history, and whose land this really was.”
Now, this agreement is the new beginning in making sure others know and remember this important piece of history.
Southern Land Company hopes this will be the start of other developers working with groups to continue preserving historic landmarks in Tennessee.
The Tennessee Ancient Sites Conservancy said they are working on preserving other indigenous mounds from being destroyed across the state.