The memorial was defaced on July 5 according to an employee at the cemetery who declined to comment any further. The monument has been defaced before. This time. several parts of the 10-ton piece of granite have been smashed, including a portion of the monument’s inscription, an insignia, and a relief of General Robert E. Lee atop a pair of crossed muskets.
The monument, which was erected in 1926, is owned and managed by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, a national organization representing a collection of local associations that strive to provide support for Confederate veterans, pay tribute to the contributions made by Southern women during the war, and to “collect and preserve the material necessary for a truthful history of the War Between the States.”
The memorial hewn from a “10-ton” block of “Stone Mountain, Georgia” rock was created by the Seattle chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy reportedly with money raised at “Dixie Day” during the 1909 Alaska Yukon Pacific Expo. The group included the actual daughters and wives of Confederate soldiers living in Seattle but the placement in 1926 came during a wave of historical revisionism and romanticizing of the Confederate South. The monument continues to be managed by the national organization representing a collection of local associations that strive to provide support for families of Confederate veterans, pay tribute to the contributions made by Southern women during the war, and to “collect and preserve the material necessary for a truthful history of the War Between the States.”
The memorial has been the subject of much debate. In 2005, parts of it were stripped and stolen. A decade later the memorial was once again targeted by vandals in the wake of a shooting at a black church in Charleston that left nine dead. Last summer, former Seattle Mayor Ed Murray called for its removal.
Lake View is a private cemetery operated by a nonprofit association. Since the memorial belongs to the United Daughters of the Confederacy, it’s that organization’s responsibility to repair it or let it be. The group has not yet replied to our questions about the damage and the monument’s future.
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