Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Another Tuesday in Richmond...

Today I got off to a late start, unfortunately not because I slept in. After a phone interview (less helpful for the substance of it than the tips she gave me for contacting people), I went to catch the bus. But, of course, the bus was late. So I waited and waited and continued to get sunburnt. Finally, the bus came and I headed off to the Museum of the Confederacy.

At the MoC, I primarily looked at clippings from 2003 when a controversy europted over the a decision to place a statue of Abraham Lincoln at the Tredegar Iron Works. The statue of Lincoln seated with his son, Tad, commemorates the trip the president made to Richmond in April 1965, after the city's fall. There is a granite wall behind the statue that reads, "To bind up the nation's room" --a quote from Lincoln's second inaugural address. As the quote suggests, Lincoln's trip was undertaken to begin the process of national reconcilation, as the war's end was close at hand.

Now, Abraham Lincoln is near-universally recognized as a national hero. Not all citizens in Richmond welcomed Lincoln's bronzed presence, though. Members of Southern heritage groups vehemently opposed Lincoln in Richmond.

Here's a fiery quote Sons of Cofederate Veterans spokesman, Bragg Bowling:
"They have no concept of history and how it might be the wrong place to put the statue," said Mr. Bowling, whose great-grandfather John Stephen Cannon fought for the Confederacy. "As a Southerner, I'm offended. You wouldn't put a statue of Winston Churchill in downtown Berlin, would you? What's next, a statue of Sherman in Atlanta?"

Anyway, the statue eventually went up. And at the monument's unveiling, the SCV and other heritage groups staged a protest vigil at Jefferson Davis' grave.


At 3:23 PM, Blogger Wax pa Pelo said...

My Darling,
I am proud of this work and it appears to me that you can develop both a thesis and lifelong value form this sojourn. I am disturbed to hear that you are getting sun burned. By direct experience I can attest to the damaging effects of this on the fair. Keep pocketing those biscuits. A bit of penurious living is good for the soul.

With love your soul daddy.

At 5:25 PM, Anonymous Daniel said...

The Churchill comment is really amusing, because a proposal for a Churchill monument in Germany raised a ruckus similar to the controversy you describe. (I think the outcome was that there was no monument at Potsdam to Churchill, but there are Stalin and FDR memorials....)

From really far South,

At 7:25 AM, Anonymous margaret said...

a thought: based on your father's comments, he and my mother should have a playdate. possible so-called communication barriers aside, they both like to issue reminders to floss and to sleep properly. this, i think, is reason enough.

At 1:46 PM, Anonymous mom said...

I think Margaret has a valid point!
forward all email from Dad to Margaret's mom.

At 7:39 AM, Anonymous margaret said...

and also forward all e-mail from your dad to me!


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