Civil War Monuments

Update: Here are some details about yesterday’s vote. Earlier this evening the Dallas City Council voted 11 to 4 in favor of removing a large Confederate War Memorial located in the Convention Center District. The decision is a reminder that this debate about Confederate monuments is far from over. This is a large memorial. The Read more

For some of my colleagues in the field of public history this week’s news on the Confederate monument debate front highlights the tension between education and racial justice. First, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill removed the pedestal on which Silent Sam once stood before it was removed last August. In Alabama a Read more

I think it’s great that a student can sit down with a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans and talk about Civil War history and their respective understanding of the controversy surrounding the Silent Sam statue on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus. Unfortunately, the video leaves the viewer with the impression that the statements made Read more

Sights and Sounds from Charlottesville

This past Saturday I co-led a tour of Charlottesville’s Confederate monuments with Dr. Jalane Schmidt of UVA. We started at the slave auction marker on Courthouse Square before stopping at the Confederate soldier statue as well as the Lee and Jackson monuments. We had a nice crowd on-hand, including NBC29 News, which filmed the tour Read more

This is my second trip to Charlottesville, Virginia in recent months to work with teachers and the community on how to understand and teach the history and memory of its Confederate monuments. In June I co-led a tour and delivered a talk to a group of educators. Yesterday, I spent ninety minutes with a group Read more

Who Still Mourns Confederate Dead?

There is one small passage in UNC Chancellor Carol Folt’s recent statement on the future of “Silent Sam” that I found somewhat puzzling. On the other hand, I guess it shouldn’t be surprising to see a statement that acknowledges the different meanings that Americans attach to this particular Confederate monument and others. Here it is Read more

What Should Happen to Silent Sam

It’s unfortunate that the administration at UNC-Chapel Hill did not take steps to defuse the controversy around their Confederate monument known as “Silent Sam” much earlier. Now they are in a bit of a pickle with students and others having removed the statue last week, followed by smaller demonstrations, and a law that appears to Read more

Update: Perhaps “Endorse” is too strong a word for the post’s title, but despite tough questions from two historians on the commission this Lost Cause nonsense was given a level of legitimacy that it does not deserve. We wouldn’t feature debunked scientific theories in such a setting, so why do we tolerate it in history Read more

Silent Sam Silenced

I went to bed last night anticipating that the Confederate statue on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus known as “Silent Sam” would be pulled down. Last night’s rally took place a little over a week after the one-year anniversary of the Charlottesville white supremacist rally, the white supremacist rally in D.C. led by Richard Spencer and Read more