The Tennessee Historical Commission (THC) recently voted to preserve a monument in Nashville’s Centennial Park that features a bronze sculpture of a young Confederate private holding a rifle seated on a stone.
The monument, which was commissioned in 1902, was petitioned to be removed by the Board of Parks and Recreation of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County in 2021.
Members of the THC are responsible for considering and voting on petitions for waiver through a public hearing process under the Tennessee Heritage Protection Act, which prohibits the removal, relocation, or renaming of a memorial that is, or is located on, public property.
During the commission’s final hearing to decide on the confederate monument’s fate, Macy Amos, who represented the Board of Parks and Recreation for Nashville, argued that the monument should be removed, citing the vandalism of the memorial in 2019 with the words “they were racists” in red paint. Additionally, Amos argued that the monument may not be a “memorial” at all, which would remove it from the commission’s jurisdiction. In her argument, she stated that the statue represents the “Lost Cause ideology” rather than a historical event or individual.
“We think that removal will curtail future attacks on this monument and will minimize the cost of cleanup of these attacks of vandalism. On behalf of the Board of Parks and Recreation, I respectfully ask that you grant our petition for waiver,” Amos stated during the hearing.
In response to Amos’ argument that the monument was not a memorial, H. Edward Phillips, an attorney representing General Joseph E. Johnston Camp from the Sons of Confederate Veterans, argued otherwise, stating that the monument was constructed in dedication to soldiers. Phillips pointed to the inscription of 540 names of soldiers – both deceased and alive at the time of construction – on the monument.
In addition, Phillips argued that the 2019 vandalism of the monument was not a “compelling reason” to remove the memorial – given that it was the first time in over a century that the monument was targeted. Phillips also noted that the Metro Board of Parks and Recreation did not petition for the moment to be removed after the vandalism for roughly two and half years later.
“As plain as the nose on my face, it’s not a compelling reason,” Phillips stated.
To conclude the hearing, the commission ultimately voted to preserve the monument, determining that the Metro Nashville Board of Parks and Recreation failed to provide an adequate argument for the monument’s removal.
– – –
Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.
10 Thoughts to “Tennessee Historical Commission Votes Against Removing Confederate Monument in Nashville’s Centennial Park”
Excellent, let’s hope this is the first step in common sense returning to the community. This erasing history has a George Orwell feel. Having said that, and a word of advice to the left, the community sentiment if we continue the woke path could change wherein all the leftist tributes, everything from Obama to Lewis to Floyd, could be torn down or renamed. How about looking forward…………. Thank you Historical Commission.
Thank you historical committee this is truly a good vote for history.
Thank you, Tennessee Historic Commission.
Nashville does not want anything that does not fit with their narrow ultra-liberal agenda. They were willing to throw away $250 million dollars for Middle Tennessee by denying the Republican Party a chance to hold their convention here in 2024.
I would like to know if anyone knows of another city in the United States that has ever denied a political party the opportunity to have their convention in their community?
What happened to all the talk about being a warm, welcoming and inclusive town?
Hoooray! Finally, the Cultural Marxists did not get their way.
Good for the THC!
As a lifelong citizen in Nashville, I am so pleased the Election Commission decided not to remove the memorial to the Veterans of the Civil War. No matter what anyone’s personal feelings are, this was such an important historical event. President Lincoln declared all Confederate soldiers would be recognized as US Veterans & receive Veteran benefits. This was his way of bringing the Union back together. Like it or not Tennesseans were part of the Confederacy. There were many Black Tennessee Slave owners who fought on the Confederacy side. That Battle is Over. There are Marxists who are trying to Wipeout & rewrite History. Nashville was also the first Southern City to Abolished Jim Crow Laws put in place by Democrats. Maybe there should be a monument for that great event in History.
This young Country was the first Country in the World to make slavery illegal.
Slavery exists all over the planet. They manufacture your expensive tennis shoes in China.
But there are many many countries where slavery is still legal. But Americans are glad to purchase the goods they make. Don’t buy slave made goods.
That’s the best news i have read so far today.
In 1862, during the early stages of the U.S. Civil War, a group of federal soldiers closed in on a young, undernourished, ragtag Confederate somewhere in Tennessee. Since he clearly owned no slaves, and did not care about the Union or cotton tariffs, he bewildered the Northern soldiers with his willingness to sacrifice his life for matters ostensibly beyond his little universe. After capturing him, the Northerners posed the question, “Why are you fighting anyhow?” to which he replied, “I am fighting because you are down here!”
So if a Martin Luther King statue or monument were vandalized, or a Barack Obama statue, then those need to be removed too?
Good decision. The board of parks needs new leadership.