RICHMOND, Va (WRIC) — Bids for possession of Richmond’s recently-removed Confederate monuments continue to come in from across the country.
Museums, non-profit organizations, historical societies and battlegrounds are all competing to claim ownership of the statues that once stood on Monument Avenue. By digging into the vetting process, 8News discovered the application process hasn’t yet officially started. Offers are already rolling in, however.
Members of New Confederate States of America Inc. have been rallying since 2017 in Richmond to keep the monuments standing, however, this year they lost their fight after Mayor Stoney ordered the statues come down on July 1.
In May, the organization created a ‘Monument Establishment and Preservation Fund‘ hoping to collect and preserve Confederate statues that have been taken down across the country.
Thomas Crompton, President & CEO, put a bid in for all of Richmond’s statues.
“It saddens us that it has actually come to this,” Crompton said. “We will gladly accept those monuments and are hopeful.”
Crompton has sent multiple letters to Mayor Stoney’s Office and this past Friday, August 7, he sent a letter to every city council member asking them to donate the statues to their heritage preservation non-profit.
New Confederate States of Ameria Inc. is based in Dandridge, Tennessee and sits on the Civil War Trail. Crompton says it’s an ideal town for the monuments to be located and is already thinking ahead.
“We have flatbeds and semi’s ready to roll right now,” Crompton said. “They will gladly come and pick-up the monuments–protect them and transport them to where their final resting place will be permanently.”
Although the non-profit hasn’t nailed down the exact plan for the statues if they’re granted them, Crompton says the graffiti will be cleaned off and they will be protected.
Crompton says they are also inquiring about obtaining statues removed in New Orleans, South Carolina and North Carolina.
Despite offers already coming for Richmond’s monuments, city council’s Chief of Staff, Lawrence Anderson, says the city will be following the proper legal process. He adds that Mayor Stoney enacting his ’emergency powers’ on July 1 was not part of the council’s process.
Anderson says just last week city council voted to keep the statues down and members are committed to following the legal process.
“We are going to take our time and do it the right way,” Anderson said. “The Chief of Staff’s Office takes this very seriously and will be thoughtful with our process that has been granted to us from the General Assembly.”
Council is now in a required 30-day period to hash out their concerns and plans.
The Chief’s of Staff Office will make a recommendation to council members who will have the final vote. 8News is told that will likely happen in mid-September.
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