Two Confederate Statues Once on Display in Charlottesville Have Been Removed

Streets are closed around the Robert E. Lee statue ahead of expected protests in Richmond, Virginia on January 17, 2021.
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The controversial statues were of Confederate general Robert E. Lee and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. The 2017 plan to remove them led to the Charlottesville protest that took the life of Heather Heyer, who was hit by a car driven by a Neo-Nazi protester.

A statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee and a statue of Confederate general Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson were taken down in Charlottesville, Virginia, according to Reuters.

The controversial statues, which memorialized leaders of the pro-slavery Confederate side in the American Civil War, have stirred controversy for several years.

In 2017, plans to remove the Robert E. Lee statue led to white supremacists protesting and rallying. The protest turned deadly when a neo-Nazi drove a car into the crowd and killed Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old counter-protestor.

Afterward, there was a unanimous decision by the Charlottesville city council to remove the statue.

As the statues were lowered and driven away, onlookers in the crowd cheered.

As of right now, there is no word on what the city will do to the statues. Until a decision is made, they will be kept in storage.

“An indication of how we feel about this is, we're inviting the public to join us in the park." city spokesman Brian Wheeler said when asked if they were aware of any forthcoming protests.

"We think a lot of our community members really want to be there to see this happen," he added.

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