Boston voters defeated a nonbinding advisory question regarding the name change of Dudley Square to Nubian Square. With 100% of precincts reporting, the margin was 45.7% in favor and 54.3% against. Dudley Square was named for Thomas Dudley, the second governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, who served from 1634 to 1651. It is located in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. Efforts to change the name of Dudley Square began in 2016. Nubia is an ancient African kingdom that was located in present-day Sudan. Nubian Square was chosen to represent the African-American community, which makes up 53 percent of the population in Dudley Square. The result of the election is nonbinding. The future of Dudley Square will ultimately be determined by the city.
The Committee on Governance reported to the Boston City Council that the names Dudley and Nubian have received scrutiny for their respective affiliations to slavery. The committee’s report said, “Some comments reflected support of changing the name from Dudley Square but do not support the name change to Nubian Square because of Nubia’s ties to slavery.”