A century and a half later, these weathered "Silent Sentinels" still stand guard, rifles at the ready, gazing off in the distance. Fact #2: There are more than 6,000 markers, monuments, and tablets on Civil War battlefields. Protesters are demanding reforms in policing and other public policies in order to create a more equitable society. In 2015, after the white supremacist massacre of twelve worshippers at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, some states removed symbols of the Confederacy from their flags and state capitols. The Civil War monument at Park Square in Westfield, around 1892. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts sits beside the headquarters of the Daughters of the Confederacy, and mere blocks away from Monument Avenue. In Atlanta, home to many Confederate memorials, these markers have been added to several monuments. Fully automatic weapons had been produced and repeating rifles had entered service. Countries around the world, and America in particular, are currently reckoning with the pervasive problem of racism. The recently defaced Robert E. Lee monument on Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia. The United States Civil War was a specific type of war that was ideological in focus while being contained within our borders. Despite this, statues have continued to fall at the hands of protesters and are increasingly being removed by governments, leaving the question of what comes next. Ideas for what to do with the removed statues include placing them in museums, simply destroying them, and adding informational plaques to existing statues, giving them important context. Atlas Obscura has a look at the company that had a lock on so many of these “bronze monuments”, the Monumental Bronze Co., who had discovered white bronze, which is actually zinc, and started mass … Texas historian Kelly McMichael, a professor at American Public University, digs deep into world of Confederate monuments in her 2013 book Sacred Memories: The Civil War Monument Movement in Texas. Image from Picturesque Hampden (1892). Now, after the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police has sparked protests and violence around the world, Confederate statues around the US are coming down in droves. I knew that I had read somewhere that many of e Confederate statues were actually mass-produced in the northern US, but I didn’t know about the “white bronze”, the advertising campaign, etc. Another of their selling points was price: thanks to their choice of material (as well as their distribution model, which relied on independent “agents” and eliminated the need for storerooms) they could easily undersell stone-based companies. After the Civil War, formerly enslaved people and their descendants had begun to make social and economic gains. Removal of the statues has proven difficult, with several state legislatures enacting laws that protect their removal or renaming. Charlottesville, Virginia's Robert E. Lee statue wrapped in black tarp following the May 2017 protests. From 1879 until 1914, Monumental Bronze Co. offered statues, grave markers and monuments that were, in their words, “beautiful in appearance and unequaled for durability.”. But “bluish-gray sand-blasted zinc” doesn’t sound that appealing, and the company trafficking in this material, Monumental Bronze Co., of Bridgeport, Connecticut, was focused hard on selling it. A post shared by Kehinde Wiley (@kehindewiley) on Jun 4, 2020 at 9:32am PDT. So, can you just give us an overview of how cities ended up erecting Confederate statues after the Civil War? Many Confederate statues across the US South were cheaply mass-produced by factories in the North. Potato Head-style. Surrealist artist Salvador Dalí may be best known for the dream-like paintings he created throughout his life, but the man was just as strange as his work. What Art will the Bidens Hang in the White House? In the years immediately after the Civil War, North Carolina Confederates understandably mourned their dead, yet the state erected fewer than 30 memorials between 1865 and 1890. A study by the SPLC found a great number were built during the early 1900s and again in the 1950s and 60s. you can email here, Follow us on Twitter – voyager@affinityvoyager. By the mid-1880s, memorialization of Civil War battlefields was reaching a fever pitch. 36. The statues have always been rooted in white supremacy, historians say. Mass-produced and cheaply constructed, the statues of Confederate dead made their way to cities across the country, accompanied by the naming of many public schools and highways for Confederate generals. It’s good that local governments, primarily across the South, have been re-evaluating public memorials to Confederate Civil War leaders, and removing installations that honor slavery. Atlas Obscura has a look at the company that had a lock on so many of these “bronze monuments”, the Monumental Bronze Co., who had discovered white bronze, which is actually zinc, and started mass producing monuments of all kinds. 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