The Confederate Monument in Louisville is a 70-foot-tall monument previously adjacent to and surrounded by the University of Louisville Belknap Campus in Louisville, Kentucky, US. The relocation of the monument to Brandenburg, Kentucky along the town’s riverfront began November 2016 and was completed in mid-December.
The granite and bronze structure was erected in 1895 by the Muldoon Monument Company with funds raised by the Kentucky Woman’s Confederate Monument Association.
The monument, the ownership of which was disputed, but previously believed owned by the city of Louisville, commemorates the sacrifice of Confederate veterans who died in the American Civil War.
The idea for the monument was first conceived in the basement of the Walnut Street Baptist Church in May 1887 during a discussion concerning the decoration of graves at Cave Hill Cemetery.
By early June 1887, the first permanent officers and representatives from the state were selected and letters of support were read. Michael Muldoon, of the Louisville monument company, enclosed a photo of a Baltimore monument and advised in his letter only granite and bronze would stand the test of time.
Nelly Marshall McAfee, author, poet, and daughter of Humphrey Marshall expressed her regret at not being able to attend. Below are more interesting facts about Statue of Confederate:
1. As with many monuments to the Confederacy, some community activists, such as Louisville’s late Reverend Louis Coleman, have called for the removal of the monument from such a prominent location due to a perceived association with the history of civil rights abuses against African-Americans.
2. On November 15, 2016, the Office of the Mayor in Louisville stated the monument would be dismantled and moved to Brandenburg, Kentucky. This was following input from the Louisville Commission on Public Art which held a public meeting earlier in July and received suggestions.
3. A 2002 act of the General Assembly created the Kentucky Military Heritage Commission. The Commission oversees the protection of monuments and memorials in their registry. The Confederate monument is currently listed as a potential site.
The monument was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on July 17, 1997, one of sixty-one different Civil War-related sites in Kentucky so honored on the same day. Four other monuments are in Louisville/Jefferson County.
4. In late April 2016, officials in Louisville announced plans to remove the monument to another location. Subsequently, a Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge signed a temporary restraining order filed by the Kentucky Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans but dissolved the restraining order at a later hearing in May 2016.
5. A 1991 Louisville public art survey estimated a cost of repairs to the monument between $20,000-$50,000 dollars including repair of the deteriorating bronze portions. The length of the sheath belonging to the cavalryman at the Raleigh site indicates contemporary damage to the Louisville cast.
6. At 70-foot-tall, the Louisville Confederate Monument is the second largest in the state of Kentucky and one of the most ornate. The monument was previously located at the intersection of 2nd and 3rd Streets, immediately south of West Brandeis Avenue in Louisville. It is built of granite, constructed by the Muldoon Monument Company, and includes three bronze Confederate soldiers designed by the sculptor Ferdinand von Miller II of Munich, Germany.