Push to move Confederate monument continues in Marshall County

Some call the confederate monument and flag outside the Marshall County Courthouse a part of southern heritage, others call it a symbol of white supremacy.

Posted: Oct 26, 2020 11:41 PM
Updated: Oct 27, 2020 10:03 AM

During an Albertville City Council meeting Monday, a resolution was presented to the council to remove the Confederate flag and monument from outside the Marshall County Courthouse.

The monument has been a hot topic for well over a month, with demonstrations back in September requiring intervention from law enforcement.

Monday, people were calm, but still divided over whether or not the confederate symbols belong in the public space.

“If Nikki Haley could do it, Ole Miss could do it, NASCAR could do it and the US army could do it, we could do it,” one speaker said.

But the Confederate monument and flag that are in front of the courthouse have people split. Some say the monument represents southern heritage.

“I cherish that heritage and our history and that’s why I’m here today to try to protect it,” Sandy Hardin, a resident with a petition to save the monument, said Monday.

Others call it a symbol of white supremacy and say it needs to go.

“We recognize that this is some people's heritage, it’s just not a heritage that should be recognized in front of our courthouse that’s supposed to stand for justice for all,” Unique Dunston said.

Dunston is the leader of Say Their Names Alabama, the group that's been working to have the flag and monument moved for several months. She said they’re hoping the city council will consider urging the county commission to take down the monuments.

Still, some in the crowd at the meeting said that the council needs to listen to citizens -- especially those with ancestors who served the confederacy -- before making a decision.

“They haven’t come out to speak yet, but I have a feeling they’re going to come out and speak because we’re being ramrodded, we’re being forgotten, our own citizens in this county are being thrown under the rug and I think maybe after this week you’re going to be hearing from some folks,” one speaker said.

The Alabama Memorial Preservation Act requires that local governments get permission from the state before moving historic structures if they have been around for more than 40 years. If they don't, they can face a $25,000 fine.

The monument that stands outside the Marshall County Courthouse was erected in 1996 -- meaning it could potentially be moved without a fine.

Members of the city council said they needed time to think about adopting the resolution before making a decision. They did not say when a decision could be expected.

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