Salisbury City Council votes to move ‘Fame’ Confederate monument, declare public safety issue

Published 10:45 pm Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Editor’s note: A more updated and lengthy story about the vote can be found here: “Salisbury City Council votes to move ‘Fame’ Confederate monument off of West Innes Street.”

SALISBURY — The City Council on Tuesday night voted by a unanimous count to declare the “Fame” Confederate statue a public safety issue and give the local chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy 10 days to agree to a proposal that involves the city paying for the relocation to a cemetery on North Lee Street.

The council approved two resolutions Tuesday night after a marathon meeting that involved hours of public comments.

The first resolution, which can be viewed by clicking here, declares the Confederate monument a public safety issue because of vandalism incidents in August 2018 and March 2019, recent protests that involved gunshots fired into the air and police using riot gear and tear gas to disperse protesters, a state of emergency and curfew declared because of protests and social media comments about protecting “Fame.”

The first resolution gives the UDC until July 16 to remedy the public safety issue by relocating it or requesting a hearing about the matter. The first resolution also says the UDC’s use of the property on which the Confederate monument sits constitutes trespassing.

If those things do not happen, the resolution orders City Manager Lane Bailey to remove the Confederate monument and store it in a safe place until the UDC retrieves it.

But the second agreement, which can be viewed by clicking here, could prevent the need for action specified in the first. It gives the Robert F. Hoke Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy 10 days to agree to a proposal in which the city of Salisbury would pay for the relocation of “Fame” to a new base in the North Lee Street Cemetery and the Historic Salisbury Foundation would oversee roughly $55,000 in funds (and any additional money) raised by local philanthropist Ed Norvell for additional improvements to the site, which contains Confederate graves.

City Attorney Graham Corriher said that the Historic Salisbury Foundation had agreed to terms that involve the city paying for the relocation but the United Daughters of the Confederacy had submitted a counter proposal.

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