Maury statue on Monument Avenue removed from pedestal; Mayor Stoney says 11 Confederate statues will be removed in total

Updated: Jul. 2, 2020 at 1:15 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The City of Richmond says work on removing confederate monuments will pause for the holiday weekend but resume next week.

Thursday marked the toppling of Matthew Fontaine Maury, an oceanographer and confederate. A contractor also removed a pair of Civil War-era cannons.

Wednesday, Mayor Levar Stoney ordered the removal of confederate monuments across the city, using the state of emergency we’re still under to execute the plan. That’s when the towering statue of General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson came down along Monument Avenue to thunderous applause from hundreds.

It was a much different scene from today around the statue of Maury with just a few dozen people watching. That statue went up in November 1929 at the intersection of Monument and Belmont Avenues. The globe atop it will remain for now.

"I think there is something to say that we can't change the history that's there," said Goochland County resident Christopher Grainer. "I think that moving swiftly to take them down is the right thing to do."

People like Grainer are pleased the city is now acting quickly to get them all down.

"To say that these statues came down quickly is kind of funny to me considering that they were standing for too long and I think we can all agree they should have come down a month ago when these protests started," said Grainer.

The monument removal plans includes the Confederate Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument on Libby Hill and the Fitzhugh Lee monument in Monroe Park. The A.P. Hill monument removal is complicated by the fact that Hill himself is interred under the pedestal. The city says it can’t release the full list due to security.

All three monuments removed Thursday are now in temporary storage.

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