ST. LOUIS - A new battle is brewing over the Confederate monument in Forest Park. This time, the argument is not about whether to take it down, but where it will go when it does come down.
The Missouri Civil War Museum wants the monument and now a fundraising effort is underway to bring it there. But the city won't agree to the museum's current terms so the Museum is raising money.
"The goal right now is to actually obtain the monument from Forest Park so we can put it in protective storage and preserve it as a historical artifact," said Mark Trout, director or the Missouri Civil War Museum.
Trout said the goal became urgent when the city actively started taking apart the 100-year-old Confederate monument last week.
“When they physically touched that monument last week and removed the first stone that's why you see us and that's why I've reacted with our fundraising,” he said.
The civil war museum's goal is to raise $130,000. That is new information according to Koran Addo, Mayor Lyda Krewson's spokesperson.
“This is a situation where the museum wanted the city to pay for the removal of the statue and the moving of the statue, and as you know this is something that weighs over 100 tons,” Addo said. He went on to say, “the main piece is 40 tons that's 80,000 pounds. It's an engineering feat to disassemble the statute and move it.”
But the city is also concerned with another demand of the museum. The museum wants the city to relinquish all control of the monument to the museum, including how it is depicted.
"The city wouldn't have a say in how it's displayed in the whole point of moving it is because it's offensive to a lot of people. It would be fine to put it in a museum in its proper context with some interpretive materials describing it what it is about and what it is depicting," Addo said.
Trout said, if the museum receives the monument, it will accurately depict the artifact and will store it until an appropriate location can be found. The monument will not be displayed at or around the museum because it is on public park grounds.
The mayor's office says we should see the monument continue to come down this week, but refused to estimate when removal would be completed.
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