RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The last of Richmond’s city-owned ststues to the Confederacy has been removed from its pedestal in the city’s Northside.

The statue of Confederate General A.P. Hill — which has sat at the intersection of West Laburnum Avenue and Hermitage Road for over 130 years — was hauled away on a tractor-trailer Monday after being picked up by a crane.

The take-down of, A.P. Hill, Richmond’s last city-owned Confederate statue Monday, Dec. 12 (Photo: Allie Barefoot/8News)

The statue removal process kicked off around 9 a.m. and now, all that is left is the pedestal beneath which the general’s remains are located. The statue’s removal comes after a very lengthy legal battle that is currently still playing out in court.

In early December, Richmond Circuit Court Judge David Eugene Cheek Sr. rejected a motion from four indirect descendants of Hill, who were trying to block the city from removing the monument.

John Hill, the closest living collateral descendent of A.P. Hill, says he’s determined to do what he can to gain ownership of Hill’s remains.  

“I went to court in Richmond on Sept. 29 and I testified and proved my lineage to Hill. Judge Cheek denied it, so we had to file an appeal so we’re still in a battle with the city for that.”  

The judge determined that delaying the removal would result in additional costs and a potential traffic hazard. Hill’s indirect descendants are now pushing to relocate the statue to the same cemetery his remains will be going to in Culpeper.  

“That’s a headstone with my family name on it, so it means a lot to me. My ancestor’s remains are in there,” Hill said.   

The family members say they are against the city’s plan to donate the statue to the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia, which currently houses all the prior monuments removed.  

Joy Shaw is a Richmond resident and said the statue coming down was the highlight of her day.  

“I feel optimistic about what we’re going to have here in the future, and I guess it makes me more proud to be in the city. Because we recognize that this is not how we want to be represented.” 

Both parties agree that the statue of A.P. Hill and its removal is an important part of history.  

“The past will not be forgotten,” Shaw said. “I don’t want it to be forgotten because it can be repeated.”  

Most city-owned Confederate memorials came down in the summer of 2020. The removal of the A.P. Hill statue marks the close of a two-year plan to remove memorials to the Confederacy in the city.  

For now, the statue will be kept in storage while the expected appeal process plays out in court.