Richmond

Earlier today I came across this wonderful postcard featuring the Jefferson Davis monument on Richmond’s Monument Avenue. This street view captures a great deal of detail, but it also serves as a reminder of the extent to which the monuments themselves shaped the surrounding physical landscape as well as the memory of the war. This Read more

Those of you living in Richmond, Virginia and surrounding communities may have heard a small explosion this morning. That was the sound of the neo-Confederate community waking up to learn that the Richmond school board voted to change the name of J.E.B. Stuart Elementary School to honor President Barack Obama. Why it is significant can Read more

Few people are better positioned in former capital of the Confederacy to discuss its commemorative landscape than John Coski. I always enjoy listening to John talk about the history of the city that he loves and knows so well. This is a very accessible and though provoking discussion that explores the history and memory of Read more

This has been one hell of a week. I have done more media interviews over the past few days than I have over the past decade. In addition to interviews I have written numerous op-eds, including this one for Smithsonian Magazine. Today I am finishing up a piece for the Atlantic, which asked me to Read more

Last night the Richmond Monument Avenue Commission held its first public forum at the Virginia Historical Society. It went about as well as I predicted. You can read about it here, here, and here. The commission went into this meeting hoping to steer the discussion away from removal to what it describes as a “middle-of-the-road” Read more

Update: Mayor Stoney’s full remarks can be found here. This is an interesting development. Today the mayor of Richmond announced the creation of the Monument Avenue Commission, which will examine ways to add historical context to its Confederate monuments. A few weeks ago I suggested that Richmond will likely not follow other cities like New Read more

Update: An extended version of this post is now available at Smithsonian Magazine. A number of things happened today that has me thinking about Richmond, Virginia and the ongoing debate about Confederate monuments. First, I had a conversation with a reporter from The Richmond Times-Dispatch about this debate. We talked about a number of things Read more

This is a wonderful example illustrating the difference between genuine concern about the public display of Confederate iconography and using it as a political football. Richmond mayoral candidate, Joe Morrissey, recently made news for announcing that if he wins he would push for the removal of the Jefferson Davis monument on Monument Avenue. Today he Read more

Thanks to the Civil War Trust for hosting another incredible teacher institute in Richmond, Virginia. While this is my 5th year with the Trust it’s been a couple of years since my last visit. I especially enjoyed the chance to catch up with old friends and spend time with some of the most passionate teachers Read more