Crews remove Robert E. Lee statue’s base from Charlottesville park

Published: Jul. 13, 2021 at 4:26 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Crews have taken apart the pedestal of Charlottesville’s recently removed Robert E. Lee statue.

Work began in Market Street Park around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, July 13, and crews appeared to be done before 4 p.m. Wednesday.

Crews completed the removal of the base to Charlottesville's Robert E. Lee statue Wednesday,...
Crews completed the removal of the base to Charlottesville's Robert E. Lee statue Wednesday, July 14.(WVIR)

Crews from Team Henry and Quarra Stone broke down the nearly 100-year-old base for the Confederate general stone by stone.

“Pieces of stone like this range from 3,000 pounds to the bottom piece you see right there will be about 10,000 pounds,” Steven Rousseau with Quarra Stone said.

The process can be tedious: “For us, it’s about finding the right access to slowly wedge it and give us enough space to pass the straps and then lift the stone very carefully,” Rousseau said.

A crew members says the hardest part of the process was taking apart the inside of the base, which is why the work continued into Wednesday.

“In this case, here the grout was kind of loose so everything was very safe,” Rousseau said.

Some people watching the deconstruction of the base were upset to see it dismantled.

“I don’t think they should take them down at all, because you don’t tear down history and that’s what they’re doing,” Hazel Arizmendi said. “The statues are beautiful for one thing and it doesn’t matter to me what it represents because it’s history.”

Another crew members says the pedestal for the “Stonewall” Jackson statue in Court Square Park is likely to begin coming down Friday, July 16.

Charlottesville has stated that both bronze statues are currently secured on city property.

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