RICHMOND, Va. — A towering statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee in Richmond, Virginia, is set to come down on Wednesday, more than 130 years after it was built as a tribute to a Civil War hero who is now widely seen as a symbol of racial injustice, state officials said Monday.
“Virginia’s largest monument to the Confederate insurrection will come down this week,” Gov. Ralph Northam said in news release on Monday. “This is an important step in showing who we are and what we value as a commonwealth.”
The imposing, 21-foot (6.4-meter) tall bronze likeness of Lee on a horse sits atop a granite pedestal nearly twice that high in the grassy center of a traffic circle on Richmond’s famed Monument Avenue.
Gov. Ralph Northam announced plans to take down the statue in June 2020, 10 days after George Floyd died under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer, sparking nationwide protests against police