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Winston-Salem Tells Group To Move Confederate Statue Or Face Possible Legal Action

Winston-Salem city skyline.
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The city of Winston-Salem has asked the group that owns a Confederate statue at a downtown intersection to remove it by the end of the month or face possible legal action.

The Winston-Salem Journal reports Mayor Allen Joines made that announcement Tuesday while addressing a crowd of more than 150 people at an Emancipation Proclamation ceremony. Joines said the statue presents a safety issue.

confederate winston-salem
Credit UNC Libraries Common
The City of Winston-Salem has told the group who owns the statue of the Confederate soldier to take it down or face possible legal action. Historic postcard from the Durwood Barbour Collection of North Carolina Postcards.

City Attorney Angela Carmon has sent a letter to the statue’s owner, the United Daughters of the Confederacy, calling it a public nuisance.

“Given the number of incidents involving vandalism, the intensity of the most recent message left by vandals and the concern for public safety, I asked that they look at removing the statue by the end of January,” she told the newspaper. “I indicated a concern about potential breaches to the peace and the strong likelihood that, given the intensity of the message, that breaches of peace are likely to occur.”

The group has previously declined an offer by the city to move the statue to a section of Salem Cemetery where Confederate graves are located.

The statue has twice been vandalized, most recently on Christmas Day with the words "Cowards & Traitors.”