STATUE Of Former Slave Kneeling Before President Lincoln Is Removed In Boston After 141 Years in Park Square
The ‘Emancipation Group’ statue that has stood in Park Square, Boston, for 141 years, was removed on the morning of Tuesday, December 29, on the orders of the office of Mayor Marty Walsh, after the Boston Art Commission had voted for it to be removed, back in June, following two public hearings, and hundreds of letters and survey responses, and it has been moved to a storage facility until a new location is selected.
The controversial statue depicted a formerly enslaved man kneeling at the feet of President Abraham Lincoln, and in a statement to CNN, a spokeswoman for Mayor Walsh’s office said, “We’re pleased to have taken it down this morning. As expressed by so many during the public process this year, we fully agree that the statue should be relocated to a new publicly accessible location, where its history and context can be better explained”.
She continued, “The decision for removal acknowledges the statue’s role in perpetuating harmful prejudices and obscuring the role of Black Americans in shaping the nation’s fight for freedom”.
The bronze statue is a replica of another one located in Washington and was donated by Moses Kimball, a politician and founder of the Boston Museum, allegedly sculpted based on a photograph of a formerly enslaved man, Archer Alexander, who “helped the Union Army before seeking freedom for himself and his family”.
Harvard Library claimed the statue could be interpreted as Alexander bowing down to Lincoln, as in a display of white dominance, but others claim it was sculpted to celebrate the emancipation of slaves.
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