County Judge Paul Pape says now is the time to decide what to do with two monuments on the county courthouse lawn. In the early 1900s, Confederate President Jefferson Davis received a monument in 1911, and soon thereafter the “Little Napoleon” P.G.T. Across the South and well beyond, cities and states have been removing Confederate monuments, recognizing their power as symbols of America’s foundational racism. Oct 30, 2017. The South tried to peacefully secede from the North. From the National History Center “These objects are inherently problematic, and that’s why they’re potentially effective teaching tools,” Hale said. To judge from the size and responsiveness of the audience at the briefing, historians have much to contribute to our civic education about this contested issue. If a statue of Lee dominates a traffic circle, what impact would a small plaque have on motorists passing by? In New Orleans, a monument to Robert E. Lee was completed in 1884, and the Battle of Liberty Place monument arrived in 1891. Blight suggested memorials to the black churches that sustained African American communities in the South and “elegiac” monuments that highlight the horrific slaughter of the Civil War. The equestrian statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee looms over Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia. Ideology is measured on a scale of 1-7, with 1 corresponding to "extremely liberal", 7 corresponding to "extremely conservative, and 4 … Updated It's a model that could be implemented by cities that are now debating what to do with the space left behind by the Confederate monuments. That includes long-standing monuments in Decatur, McDonough and … Nikki Haley announced that she will call for the Confederate flag to be removed. Across the South and well beyond, cities and states have been removing Confederate monuments, recognizing their power as symbols of America’s foundational racism. Many municipalities in the United States have removed monuments and memorials on public property dedicated to the Confederate States of America (CSA), and some, such as Silent Sam in North Carolina, have been torn down by protestors. There are roughly 1,700 Confederate monuments still standing across the United States as of 2019, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.Most … Floyd's death during an arrest by a White police officer … The panelists agreed that historians have a vital role to play in altering public attitudes. Verification email has been resent. AHA Today That leaves three ways in which cities around the country could deal with them: keep them and add context, move them to museums, or move them elsewhere. To complete your CNN profile and ensure you are able to receive important account information, please verify your email address. Related Article This makes them historically significant symbols of the South’s vile hundred-year struggle after the war to deny African-Americans their rights under the law — a legacy of shame that should never be forgotten.) Confederate monuments, and the fights over them, have less to do with honoring the memory of the dead than with celebrating a society built on racial oppression. Success! The Northampton County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to remove a Confederate monument from Eastville's Historic Court Green. The overdue momentum to remove various Confederate symbols, especially some 1,500 statues, from their perches has picked up across the country in … Museums — or cemeteries — are more fitting final resting places for these relics of the past. They are divisive and perpetuate white supremacy, the concept that one race is above all others. "I believe that Confederate statues should … A Winthrop University poll of 969 residents in the 11 Southern states that seceded from the Union has found a majority of respondents want some action taken surrounding Confederate monuments, To historians, what tends to be missing from Confederate monuments is the full picture of what they really stand for. After voting to remove “Old Joe,” the City Council of Gainesville, Florida, offered it to the local United Daughters of the Confederacy chapter. What the memorials vindicated, however, Foster stressed, was a social order that subordinated the lower orders to the landed elites, women to men, and, above all, blacks to whites. “To leave them as they are is in many cases a giant middle finger to the communities in which they sit,” said Anne Sarah Rubin, a history professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu vowed to move the four statues to a museum, but it remains to be seen where they’ll end up. Ideology is measured on a scale of 1-7, with 1 corresponding to "extremely liberal", 7 corresponding to "extremely conservative, and 4 … Cox credited the UDC, which numbered 100,000 members by the outbreak of World War I, with managing to cement culturally what the southern states established institutionally. For some, the problem with contextualization is it keeps monuments in places where they may not be wanted by everyone. Many of the same arguments used to defend Confederate monuments (“it’s our history”) would apply equally to Saddam in Iraq or George III in New York. Confederate landmarks reflect America’s evolving story, from the way they originally were intended to the way communities are trying to change them today. The South never got over losing the Civil War, and one of the ways it celebrated the “Lost Cause” was by erecting statues and memorials to Confederate leaders and soldiers in city squares and other civic spaces across the South, especially from the 1890s onward. By the 1920s, northerners had bought into it as well. Many municipalities in the United States have removed monuments and memorials on public property dedicated to the Confederate States of America (CSA), and some, such as Silent Sam in North Carolina, have been torn down by protestors. Bastrop County considering what to do with Confederate monuments. Barricades go up as the removal of a Jefferson Davis begins in May in New Orleans. “Today, the University of Mississippi draws from that past a continuing commitment to open its hallowed halls to all who seek truth, knowledge, and wisdom.”. CNN Sans ™ & © 2016 Cable News Network. Confederate monuments, like their Communist bronze and granite comrades in Budapest, are kitsch. The American Historical Association has issued a widely endorsed statement on Confederate monuments. Please read our commenting and letters policy before submitting. Virginia had a plan for dealing with its Confederate monuments. The removal of four monuments from public spaces in New Orleans stunned historians who thought, after six years of debate, that the day would never come. During this time, groups such as the United Daughters of the Confederacy and Sons of Confederate Veterans built monuments that promoted the “Lost Cause” ideology: the belief that states’ rights, not slavery, was the Confederacy’s principal cause, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Suddenly, a question long debated among historians has become the subject of a national conversation: What should happen to these relics of a bygone era? Public History. In Winston-Salem, N.C., there are reportedly plans to move a Confederate monument … Critics say contextualization has its challenges. Confederate Statues A recent hot-button subject in the media has been what to do with Confederate monuments in the South. Please click the button below to agree to our Terms and Conditions and acknowledge our Privacy Policy. Phone: 202.544.2422Email: info@historians.org. Credit: AP/Kristen Zeis Updated June 11, 2020 5:15 PM Another natural resting place for ousted monuments has been historic cemeteries, often those with a Civil War connection. The Confederate flag is seen flying on the Capitol grounds a day after South Carolina Gov. Another Confederate statue in Richmond, this one a monument to General Robert E. Lee, is to be removed in the next few days. “They provoke conversation about a period that a lot of people have forgotten about or don’t want to talk about.”. I think in those places their should be a sort of a monument a stone with a plaque saying this was the former home of *insert name of monument* and it was removed on the day of *date* and some information about the monument that used to be there. The most prominent Confederate memorial in Jacksonville is a statue of a Confederate soldier that sits atop a towering pillar in Hemming Park." St. Louis removed a Confederate monument from a city park in June, after reaching an agreement with the Missouri Civil War Museum. For those who fought to remove the statues, the question of what to do with them is a simple one to answer. Putting up monuments to replace them that depict more of the whole story seems like a good idea but not where the monument was. Cox made a similar point, noting that these monuments celebrate a sanitized version of history that obscures the centrality of slavery and white supremacy to the “Lost Cause.”. In response to a related question about how public arts programs can alter historical narratives, Grossman recommended monuments that present the Civil War as a war of liberation for blacks. Confederate General P.G.T. Tonight, another chance for the public to sound off on what to do … Confederate battle flag: Separating the myths from facts. Tennis legend and Richmond native Arthur Ashe was added to Monument Avenue in 1996, the last time the city had the monument debate. “Monuments were never fully representative of the localities they were put up in. The SPLC stated 1,800 Confederate symbols and monuments still stand on public property. Removing Confederate monuments doesn't erase history. If an account exists, we've sent an email with a link to reset your password. “If historic preservationists want to save a house, they raise the money to save the house and move it onto property they own,” said Karen Cox, history professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Removal of Confederate monuments and memorials is an ongoing process in the United States since the 1960s. “What to do with Confederate monuments? What to do with removed statues The first step should be a repeal of state laws banning the movement of Confederate statues, according to Brundage. The museum, which sued the city over ownership of the statue and its base, will bear the cost of the removal and be responsible for housing the monument until a permanent home is found at another Civil War museum, battlefield or cemetery outside St. Louis County. That’s the plan in Richmond, Virginia, the short-lived capital of the Confederate States of America. AHA Today On the other side of the issue, an effort is underway in towns and cities across the South to remove statues and monuments commemorating Confederate leaders and soldiers. St. Louis removed a Confederate monument from a city park in June, after reaching an agreement with the Missouri Civil War Museum. The momentum to remove Confederate memorials … But he also cautioned against any precipitate action, urging deliberation in dealing with Confederate monuments. It came to represent the South’s victory over Reconstruction, black rights, and Yankee rule. Last week, the National History Center brought the issue to Capitol Hill as a congressional briefing. James Grossman pointed out that the Russians adopted the latter strategy with their Fallen Monument Park, where they relocated statues of Soviet leaders. Figuring out what to do with Confederate monuments will not be quick or easy. “This historic statue is a reminder of the university’s divisive past,” the plaque reads, in part. The current controversy over Confederate monuments is about how we remember the past and interpret its meaning. Most went up in the early 20th century after the Supreme Court ruling allowing “separate but equal” public facilities, an era of intense backlash to integration marked by Jim Crow policies of legalized discrimination and more than 4,000 lynchings of black people in the Deep South. There’s no clear consensus, but most historians agree: It’s up to individual communities to make decisions that reflect their values. Foster struck a similar note, pointing out that public opinion on the issue needs to change. Virginia had a plan for dealing with its Confederate monuments. In several instances the heritage groups that made monuments in the first place have taken over responsibility for them. Such monuments have come under renewed criticism as the country wrestles with questions of racial justice and dark aspects of its history. At the heart of the issue are National Park Service sites commemorating Civil War battlefields such as Gettysburg that include monuments honoring Confederate soldiers who fought and died there. Two Southern states hastily passed preservation laws that forbid the removal or even contextualizing of Confederate memorials, adding to a handful of existing similar statutes. 8:29 AM EDT, Fri June 30, 2017. They are NOT Monuments to Slavery or Monuments to White Supremacy! Another person asked, so what should be done with the monuments? It's a model that could be implemented by cities that are now debating what to do with the space left behind by the Confederate monuments. A new home has yet to be found for a Confederate monument in St. Louis. A statue of Confederate leader Jefferson Davis is removed in 2015 from University of Texas' South Mall. Founded in the 1890s, as black men were being disenfranchised and targeted by lynch mobs with increased frequency, the UDC sought to celebrate the “Lost Cause” and its defense of white supremacy. Password reset email has been resent. CNN’s Dakin Andone contributed to this report. The museum, which sued the … It took almost two years for the University of Texas to find a new home for a statue of Jefferson Davis. A crane removes a Confederate monument from Decatur Square in Georgia on Thursday night. In Winston-Salem, N.C., there are reportedly plans to move a Confederate monument … Others have given talks to civic groups, testified to government agencies, and spoken at public forums. Confederate monuments have always been symbols of white supremacy. These monuments should stay to give people knowledge and teach them of what our state once was and still is. Down History The Confederate Monuments that are standing are a symbol of our great nations life. Courtesy Danny Wicentowsk/Riverfront Times, killed nine black churchgoers in Charleston, removal of four monuments from public spaces in New Orleans. Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc/Corbis/Getty Images/file. “Confederate monuments have and continue to be a symbol of racism, oppression, and slavery. Since then, a movement to pull Confederate iconography from government and public property has been gathering steam. Removal of Confederate monuments and memorials is an ongoing process in the United States since the 1960s. In one instance in Kentucky, a Confederate monument was moved to another, more welcoming town. In New Orleans, a monument to Robert E. Lee was completed in 1884, and the Battle of Liberty Place monument arrived in 1891. Events at Charlottesville, Virginia, last August drew the nation’s attention to statues and monuments commemorating Confederate heroes. (The vast majority of Confederate monuments went up decades after the war, their intent to send the message that whites still reigned supreme in the South. Advertisement: In the … Many museums already hold items from dark chapters in history, including racist memorabilia from the Jim Crow era, said University of Pittsburgh assistant professor Keisha N. Blain. They were put up to send messages and create false narratives about what the war was about and who should be celebrated,” said Rubin, author of “Through the Heart of Dixie: Sherman’s March and American Memory.”. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images. The contentious confederate monuments at the old Durham County Courthouse are now locked away behind a chain link fence. The statues on the Confederate monument are covered in graffiti and beheaded after a protest in Portsmouth, Va., on Wednesday. But even if museums want them, it can be hard to make room for six tons of bronze or marble. Finding the right approach is another challenge. “What we want to do is inject historical perspective and facts into these monuments and encourage people to think of them as pieces of history or artifacts instead of objects of veneration,” said Sheffield Hale, president and chief executive officer of the Atlanta History Center. These issues are the stock in trade of historians, and many have written op-eds and done interviews with reporters for national and local news outlets. Post-Soviet countries have done many different things to statues of Lenin, including moving them to statue parks or graveyards. In the early 1900s, Confederate President Jefferson Davis received a monument in 1911, and soon thereafter the “Little Napoleon” P.G.T. Before any Confederate monuments are removed, they should be carefully photographed and measured so that the historical record of the monuments in … In one instance in Kentucky, a Confederate monument was moved to another, more welcoming town. Blight argued that we are in the midst of a new “memory boom,” a commoditized phenomenon that is distinct from historical knowledge. In spring 2017, the city oversaw the removal of four Confederate monuments. Instead of moving them, some academics suggest adding historically accurate context so people can learn from them. Erecting them does. The overdue momentum to remove various Confederate symbols, especially some 1,500 statues, from their perches has picked up across the country in … The effort pits those who see the symbols as tributes to Southern heritage against others who regard them as a glorification of a sordid history of racism. Cox urged historians to reach out to their communities and news outlets, many of whom, she noted, are receptive to historical expertise and insights. 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