House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has demanded Congress to remove all Confederate statues in the U.S. Capitol Building. Pelosi sent a letter to the Joint Committee in the Library calling for the removal of the Confederate statues because the monuments represent men who committed treason and atrocities against other human beings.
According to Pelosi, it is not a matter of ‘removing history” from the United States but a matter of “democracy.” Pelosi said, “the statues in the Capitol should embody our highest ideals as Americans.” Pelosi continued that statues should represent Americans “who we aspire to be as a nation.”
The statues which fill the halls of Congress should reflect our highest ideals as Americans. Today, I am once again calling for the removal from the U.S. Capitol of the 11 statues representing Confederate soldiers and officials. These statues pay homage to hate, not heritage.
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) June 10, 2020
The National Statuary Hall Collection in the United States Capitol Building holds 100 statues that have donated by all the states. Each state is allowed to donate two statues to the collection. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) stated that it is up to the individual states to remove their statues from the Captial building.
The 11 Confederate statues that Pelosi has requested to be removed are as follows.
Alabama: Joseph Wheeler (1836- 1906). Wheeler was a cavalry general in the Confederate Army of Tennessee during the civil war. After Wheeler served in Congress for the state of Alabama. From 1818 to 1880, Wheeler also established a 50-acre plantation named the called Joseph Wheeler Plantation in which he owned 56 African-American slaves.
Florida: Edmund Kirby Smith (1824-1893). Smith was a brigadier general in the Confederate army during the civil war. Smith was one of only 7 people to ever make full general. He the last to surrender during the civil war and commander of the Trans-Mississippi Department.
West Virginia: John E. Kenna (1848-1893). Kenna served in the Confederate at the age of 16 years old. After being injured, he decided to become a lawyer Kenny served as a senator from 1883 to 1893.
North Carolina: Zebulon Baird Vance (1848- 1893). Vance was a colonel of the Twenty-sixth North Carolina, Confederate Army. Vance was elected 37th and 43rd Governor of North Carolina. Vance grew up in a family with slaves and at only 14 years old, he inherited 18 slaves.
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Arkansas: Uriah Milton Rose (1834,-1913). Rose was a prominent attorney and founded the American Bar Association. He was loyal to the Confederate and was against ratifying the Reconstruction of the Constitution.
Louisiana: Edward Douglass White (1845-1921). White had a long political career in the United States after he served as a lieutenant in the Confederate Army. White became a senator and the ninth chief justice of the United State from 1894 to 1921. During his time as Chief Justice, he upheld segregation laws regardless of the Constitution.
Georgia: Alexander Hamilton Stephens (1812- 1883). Stephens began his career as a school teacher and became the Vice President of the Confederate States. He believed that slavery was a “natural condition” that black people should be slaves. Stephens owned several thousand acres of land in Georgia and owned 34 slaves. He later became the 50th governor of Georgia.
South Carolina: Wade Hampton (1818-1902). Hampton was a lieutenant general in the Confederacy and was one of the biggest slaveholders in the Southeast. By 1860, Hampton held 335 slaves on his plantation and believed that the KKK was important. He later became a senator.
Mississippi: James Zachariah George (1881- 1897). George was a colonel in the Confederate Army, a lawyer, and later became a senator. George was a white supremacist, who held nearly 1,000 slaves on his plantation called Cotesworth. He also wrote a book named “The Political History of Slavery in the United States” which was published after his death.
Virginia: Robert E. Lee (1807-1870). Lee was the commander of the Confederate Army and did not own any slaves but inherited them when his father in law died. Lee did emancipate the slaves he inherited. Even though Lee was the commander, he did not believe in slavery. In 1861, he opposed the secession and believed that slavery needed to be prevented in the growing territories of the United States
Mississippi: Jefferson Davis (1808-1889) In 1861, Davis president of the Confederate States and held his position four years.is had 113 slaves on his plantation and was a strong believer in slavery until he died. It was not until 2013 that the slaves Davis owned were recognized as legally free in Mississippi.