UDC ‘ready and willing to consent’ to moving confederate statue in Dalton

DALTON, Ga. (WDEF) – A confederate statue in downtown Dalton is causing quite a stir with large amounts of people at odds.

The issue is over where the statue of Confederate General Joseph Johnston should stand.

Folks with opposing views started petitions online.

One wants to preserve the piece of history by letting it stay.

The other wants to send the over 100 year old statue packing and move it to another location like the historic Huff House.

Both have thousands of signatures.

Dalton resident Savannah Thomas started the petition to have Johnston moved.

“What people, contemporaries think about, they think about the civil war, but that’s not what it’s talking about. What it’s talking about is the 50th anniversary of the succession,” Johnston said.

Tyler Martin started a petition for an anonymous person to keep the statue in downtown.

“If people think there is an inequality here, I mean there’s real estate right here on the other end where people can put up a nice monument to commemorate the victims of slavery and I think that would be poetic for Dalton,” Martin said.

“Leaving it on the corner of Hamilton and Crawford is not the best way to care for and preserve that statue,” Thomas said.

“We feel like that if it was relocated that it could be damaged or stolen,” Martin said.

Dalton attorney Robert Jenkins released the following statement on behalf of the United Daughters of the Confederacy:

The Bryan M. Thomas Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) placed the Joseph E. Johnston Monument (Monument) located in Dalton, Georgia, and the ladies of the local UDC being desirous of a resolution of the recent issue concerning the location of the Monument and being concerned for the safety and security of all parties on each side of this discussion and conflict, and further desiring that there be no conflict among the citizens and visitors of this community, respectfully request that all parties stand down to prevent further disruption, disunity, or harm.

Further, the ladies of the local Chapter of the UDC are ready and willing to consent to the relocation of the Monument to another venue in Dalton or Whitfield County in the event that the City of Dalton Council elects to have the Monument moved from its present location provided that the City of Dalton or others pay for its safe relocation.

In contemplation of such event, the ladies of the local Chapter of the UDC are in communication with parties concerning possible appropriate venues for the relocation of the Monument.

It has been brought to their attention that further marches, demonstrations, and counter-marches and counter-demonstrations are planned which may involve people and parties from each side of this matter, and we are concerned that, in light of the emotional feelings of each side and volatile state of things in our community and in our nation, that someone could get hurt.

It is our prayer that all parties refrain from any further such action.  It is our prayer that by allowing the legal process of the local governments and civic organizations to proceed that a good resolution for all parties can result.

Thomas said she’s grateful of the UDC’s stance.

Categories: Dalton, Featured, Local News

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