Task force to consider fate of Augusta’s Confederate monument

Published: Aug. 5, 2020 at 6:31 AM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - A new task force will be giving recommendations to Augusta leaders about renaming the city’s monuments and landmarks.

This all as the call to remove Augusta's Confederate monument downtown grows.

The task force will have 60 days to report back to commissioners with a recommendations for the monument, which has been the subject of a petition that gathered thousands of signatures.

Removing any monument in Georgia or South Carolina has to be decided by the state. Local governments cannot make the decision.

The monument, standing in a park in the middle of the 700 block of Broad Street, was commissioned by the Ladies Memorial Association of Augusta in 1875.

Around the base of the monument are the life-size statues of four Southern generals in the War Between the States: Thomas R. R. Cobb, Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, Robert E. Lee, and William Henry Talbot. A Confederate private is depicted at the top of the shaft. The model for this statue was Private Berry Benson of Augusta.

An inscription at the base reads, “In honor of the men of Richmond County who died in the cause of the Confederate States.”

More from the Augusta Commission:

  • Commissioners talked about a possible memorial wall for Augustans who have died from COVID-19. City leaders want the Greater Augusta Arts Council to design it and bring it back to them for approval. But Mayor Hardie Davis Jr. says he wants to think about other options and the cost of building it.
  • The Bell Auditorium will become a polling place for advance voting for the November elections. Augusta commissioners approved that and also unanimously voted to approve over $100,000 to mail absentee ballots to every voter in Richmond County. Officials say the goal is to avoid large crowds on Election Day.

Copyright 2020 WRDW/WAGT. All rights reserved.

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