Confederate monument to be removed from Lawrenceville square

Gwinnett County becomes the latest local government to remove a Confederate monument after county officials voted to put the monument that sits in downtown Lawrenceville in storage.

Court proceedings will ultimately determine the fate of the monument.

The 28-year-old monument sits on the grounds of Gwinnett County’s Historic Courthouse in Lawrenceville and became the focus of media attention and protests after it was vandalized in June. In response, Gwinnett County Solicitor-General Brian Whiteside filed a lawsuit against Gwinnett County seeking a court order declaring the monument a public nuisance and directing County officials to remove it.

A second vandalization took place Thanksgiving Day.

County Chairwoman Nicole Hendrickson said the present location of the monument may result in additional acts of vandalism and creates a public safety concern for both the city of Lawrenceville and Gwinnett County.

“While we’re respectful of the ongoing court proceedings, we feel that action is needed now to move the monument where it will not be a target for vandals,” Hendrickson said. “A monument celebrating the Confederacy on county property is inconsistent with the message of welcome and inclusion that the County is sending to the world. We should place it in storage to avoid further provocation and to help the cause of tranquility for the benefit of all.”

Commissioner Kirkland Carden said, “It is time to remove this monument of hate that has been a stain on Gwinnett County since it was erected in 1993. Gwinnett has always strived to be a welcoming and inclusive world-class community. Removing this monument is a step in the right direction and it is fitting that we voted to do so the day after we celebrated the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”

The Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners in March 1992 accepted and approved the placement of the Confederate monument on the grounds of the Gwinnett Historic Courthouse in downtown Lawrenceville at the request of the Gwinnett Historical Society. The Gwinnett County Confederate Monument Committee raised funds to erect the structure, which was installed in 1993.

Photo: The Brownfowl collection / Shutterstock.com

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