The fiery discourse about the place of Confederate monuments in contemporary America has since given way to the presidential campaign for much of the national media. But the wheels of city government kept turning on the question in Baltimore. On Wednesday, a commission appointed by the mayor to make recommendations on the future of Baltimore’s Confederate monuments handed down a split decision.
In a report, the seven-member commission said two monuments should go, and two monuments should stay — with alterations. Here’s how they read:
- The Lee Jackson Monument at Wyman Park Dell should be removed and offered to the National Park Service to be placed in the Chancellorsville Battlefield.
- The Roger Taney Monument in Mt. Vernon Place should be removed
- The Confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Mt. Royal Ave. should be retained, but recontexualized.
- The Confederate Women’s Monument should be retained, but recontextualized.
The report does not explain what would go into “recontextualizing” the monuments, but Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake indicated that new signage should be installed at all four of the monuments in the short-term.
That’s because even the monuments that were recommended for removal aren’t going right away. Plans weren’t in place to remove the monuments, but Rawlings-Blake said city agencies should consider any viable relocation proposals.
Rawlings-Blake’s term is set to end following the general election in November.
The commission was appointed last year after a nationwide debate about Confederate monuments sprung up in the wake of the mass shooting in Charleston. Separately, Robert E. Lee Park near the Baltimore County line was renamed Lake Roland Park.