Jefferson County Judge Gerald Robinson has struck a deal to move the Confederate statue at the entrance to the county courthouse, KATV reports.
Robinson told KATV he struck a deal with the local chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy to relocate the monument.
“We have a Confederate cemetery out on Sulphur Springs Road here in Jefferson County and we best felt that that would be the place for it and it’s a historical site,” he added.
Robinson said it will cost anywhere from $10,000 to $12,000 to relocate the statue. According to the county judge, UDC has agreed to raise most of the funds to move the monument out to the cemetery. Robinson stressed that he didn’t want to use tax dollars for this project, but did say they plan to help the UDC by seeking historical grants. Robinson’s goal is to have the statue relocated by the end of the year.
We reported earlier about the judge’s desire to move the statue, originally placed at Pine Bluff High School in 1910 as part of a wave of Lost Cause fervor promoted by Confederate groups in the early 20th century. It’s a tribute to Confederate soldiers and David O. Dodd, the teen hanged for spying on Union troops in Little Rock during the war to preserve slavery.
Others have suggested Sulphur Springs, specifically Camp Sulphur Springs Confederate Cemetery, as a site for the monument. It’s on the national register of historic places, the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History notes.
Speaking of the Civil War: There’s a timely article in Smithsonian on the topic. It’s about how the popular PBS series on the Civil War gave an almost romantic and white-centric view of the war. The recent PBS series on reconstruction prompted Ken Merritt to write on the need for a new Civil war documentary.
Garnering scores of awards, “The Civil War” has now influenced generations of Americans and shaped their beliefs about slavery, the war itself, and its aftermath. The documentary had an outsized effect on how many Americans think about the war, but it’s one that unfortunately lead to a fundamental misunderstanding about slavery and its legacies—a failing that both undergirds and fuels the flames of racism today.