100 Year Old Confederate Landmark to Be Removed Public View (UPDATED)
A Kentucky monument that has stood for 120 years honoring the state’s Civil War dead will be removed from its site near the University of Louisville campus just months after a statewide poll showed an overwhelming majority of Kentuckians wanted to leave it in place.
The stone monument has been on the National Register of Historic Places since July 17, 1997 and the state Historic Properties Advisory Commission voted 7-2 against the proposal, but University President James Ramsey and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer disagree.
“It’s time for us to move this monument to a more appropriate place,” Ramsey said, although the monument, in fact, will be disassembled and placed in storage.
The statue is of a Confederate soldier.
Less than a year after a young man with racist rants and a Confederate flag on his website opened fire at an AME church in Charleston, South Carolina, the move to eradicate all traces of arguably the most important chapter in American history has taken hold.
History is complicated and in this case, especially so because Kentucky is the one state where the phrase “brother against brother” applied to a populace surrounded by three slave-holding states and three “free” states.
In fact, Kentucky chose not secede from the Union when 11 Southern states formed the Confederacy in 1861, hoping to stay neutral with men serving on both sides.
Kentucky is the birthplace of both Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis, and statues of both are displayed in the state’s Capitol rotunda.
Recently, students at the University of Virginia have labeled its founder, Thomas Jefferson, a racist, demanding that his statue be removed from the institution he founded.
The University of Oregon is under pressure to remove a quotation from Martin Luther King’s “I have a Dream” speech from a building because it isn’t “inclusive enough for today’s sensibilities,” disregarding the “sensibilities” of the times Martin Luther King lived in – Jim Crow, Selma, and “Bombingham” making his work all the more brave and significant.
UPDATE: A judge has BLOCKED the statues removal. Read more here.