by Lena Friedman
(This article was originally published on the Capitol Hill Seattle Blog and has been reprinted under an agreement.)
In a victory for those who have been calling for its removal for years, the toppled United Confederate Veterans Memorial sitting in Capitol Hill’s Lake View Cemetery won’t be restored as the structure is past repair, a cemetery representative tells CHS.
The controversial memorial to Confederate soldiers of the Civil War was vandalized and pulled down over the Fourth of July weekend. With the rubble now removed, all that remains of its nearly century-long existence are a series of orange cones and red tape.
“There’s no process to restore it. It’s gone,” the representative said. “The vandals came in and they just ruined it but we were in the process of getting rid of it anyway.”
Over the Independence Day weekend, the huge Stone Mountain granite monument hewed from the Georgia mountain birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan was toppled and dragged until it collapsed. Yellow pull straps were left behind at the scene.
The presence of a Confederate monument in Seattle shows that sympathies for the South rose even in the distant Pacific Northwest. The Lake View monument, erected in 1926, was owned by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, a national organization representing a collection of local associations dedicated to marking the contributions made by Southern women during the war, and collecting and preserving “the material necessary for a truthful history of the War Between the States.”
Over the years as people called for the memorial’s removal, Lake View management said the monument was managed by the national United Daughters of the Confederacy organization and tried to stay clear of the controversy.
This week, the employee of the cemetery nonprofit did not provide additional details of what the plans had been to remove the structure and referred CHS to cemetery management for further comment. The manager hung up when we tried to call.
Lena Friedman was born and raised in Capitol Hill and studies psychology at Whitman College. She covers news for Whitman’s student paper, The Wire, during the school year and enjoys singing a cappella, running a food instagram @sweetnseattle, and reading memoirs during her free time. Find her on Twitter @LenaSFriedman or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Featured image: A once towering monument to Confederate soldiers in Seattle’s Lake View Cemetery was reduced to pillars of rubble by local activists on the Fourth of July, 2020. (Photo: Alex Garland)