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Confederate Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument removed from Libby Hill

Racial Injustice Confederate Monuments
LibbyHillstatue-Brendan1.jpeg
LibbyHillstatue-Brendan.jpeg
Racial Injustice Confederate Monuments
LibbyHillstatue-Brendan2.jpeg
Racial Injustice Confederate Monuments
Posted at 7:39 AM, Jul 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-08 18:57:48-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- The statue atop the Confederate Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument in Libby Hill Park was removed Wednesday.

Crews arrived in the city's Church Hill neighborhood Wednesday morning to remove the statue of a Confederate soldier that stands more than 70-feet high on a pedestal.

The monument, which has stood in Richmond since 1894, is the latest in a series of Confederate monuments to be removed by the city.

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It comes one day after crews removed the J.E.B. Stuart statue from its pedestal on Monument Avenue and one week after the removal of statues to Stonewall Jackson and Matthew Fontaine Maury.

Crews first sprayed down a wasp nest that was attached to the bronze, according to the contractor owner. Workers wrapped straps around the statue's shoulders and lowered it to the ground.

Kaitlin Dillard lives within eyesight of the statue.

"Here in Richmond, the former capital of the Confederacy, you’re just bombarded by monuments all the time. Seeing them come down it feels like some weight off my chest," Dillard said.

The 17-foot tall statue could be seen from multiple viewpoints from the city.

"I think it means a really dark history that we should stop celebrating and move on from. Taking down these monuments is a sad step but there’s more work to do," Dillard explained.

Michael Lucas also watched the removal of the statue.

"I've been helping clean this monument to try and preserve it and fighting to preserve the monuments in our city. They are very much part of our history," Lucas stated.

He described the recent vandalism and graffiti of the monument as "horrible."

"It was a veterans' monument. Why shouldn’t Virginia have a veterans' monument in the capital of Virginia?" Lucas asked.

The state was taken to storage to an undisclosed location on a flatbed truck.

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney ordered the removal of all city-owned Confederate statues on July 1 citing public safety concerns.