In SummaryIn the arrangement, Richmond’s Black History Museum would work with the Valentine museum and local community members to decide the future of other Confederacy symbols as well.
In Richmond, Virginia, city and state officials have agreed to move ownership of the statue and pedestal of Gen. Robert E. Lee to the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia, according to The Washington Post.
In the agreement, Richmond’s Black History Museum would collaborate with the Valentine museum and members of the community to make decisions about other bronze and stone Confederacy symbols as well.
According to The Washington Post, the deal has to be approved by the Richmond City Council. Mayor Levar Stoney worked out the details with Gov. Ralph Northam and believes it will help the community take a thoughtful approach to divisive symbols.
“Entrusting the future of these monuments and pedestals to two of our most respected institutions is the right thing to do,” Stoney said in a statement in The Washington Post. “They will take the time that is necessary to properly engage the public and ensure the thoughtful disposition of these artifacts.”
Ever since the racial justice protests in the summer of 2020, a lot of cities near Virginia have gotten rid of Confederate memorials from public spaces. The city of Richmond, which was once upon a time the capital of the Confederacy, has had to deal with the Confederate iconography, according to The Washington Post.
“Symbols matter, and for too long, Virginia’s most prominent symbols celebrated our country’s tragic division and the side that fought to keep alive the institution of slavery by any means possible,” Northam said in a statement. “Now it will be up to our thoughtful museums, informed by the people of Virginia, to determine the future of these artifacts, including the base of the Lee Monument which has taken on special significance as protest art.”