In last night’s City Council meeting, a joint resolution between the City and Buncombe County was unanimously approved to remove two Confederate monuments on city-owned property, as well as to create a task for to discuss removal, relocation, or alteration of the Vance Monument.
The two Confederate monuments
- One monument, honoring the 60th Regiment of North Carolina Confederate soldiers, is in front of the Buncombe County Courthouse. This land is county-owned.
- Another monument, known as the Robert E. Lee Dixie Highway, Colonel John Connally Marker, is in front of the Vance Monument in Pack Square Park – a likely site where enslaved people were bought + traded in Asheville. This land is city-owned.
- Both monuments were placed – and are still owned – by the United Daughters of the Confederacy.
With full passage of the resolution, City and County will request that both monuments be immediately removed by the Daughters of the Confederacy. If they are not removed within 90 days, the City and County will remove them.
The Vance Monument
- The monument is on city-owned land. Read our piece on its history here.
- A task force approved by both the City + County will be created to discuss the fate of the Vance Monument. The task force will have up to 12 members, half selected by city leadership and half by county leadership, pending county approval.
- Within three months, the task force will report with a recommendation on removing or repurposing the monument.
- Until a decision is made, the Vance Monument will be shrouded “in order to reduce its impact on the community and to reduce the risk of harm it presents in its current state.”
City + county leadership expressed their desire that the monuments be removed or altered in a way that would honor the local history of African Americans. Leadership also noted their commitment to promoting racial equity and justice.
Council took calls on the Confederate monument discussion before passing the resolution.