“Now that New Orleans has toppled its statue of Robert E. Lee, Asheville should take a hard look at the man we honor in our city’s most prominent public space….
“[The name of] Zeb Vance, North Carolina’s Civil War governor, is carved into the granite obelisk rising above Pack Square….
“Bringing down the monument has symbolic appeal, but it would be politically difficult and may not be necessary. After all, it is not a statue of a man but a simple spire that could be rededicated to a new cause.
“For a start, the city could place, near the monument, a historical marker that gives an unflinching account of Zeb Vance’s life and legacy. Another plaque detailing the city’s African-American heritage could be added as well.
“And then I’d propose that the city rename the obelisk.
“With the simple addition of two letters, the Vance Monument could become the Advance Monument….”
— From “The Advance Monument: A proposal for Asheville’s Vance problem” by Mark Essig in the Asheville Citizen-Times (June 3)
This wouldn’t be the first time Vance’s name had become part of an Advance.
“Wilson, North Carolina… has been home since 1926 to a memorial that commemorated the Revolution and the Confederacy: It originally featured a massive central column depicting the Stars and Stripes and the flag of the Confederate States of America, flanked by two water fountains — one for whites, one for blacks. It apparently outlasted its welcome sometime during the 1960s. Without fanfare, the fountain was moved from the court house to an inconspicuous park, and the fountains were replaced by small granite caps. Today you would be unlikely to recognize it as a one-time segregated water fountain….”
— From “I’ve studied the history of Confederate memorials. Here’s what to do about them” by W. Fitzhugh Brundage at Vox (Aug. 18)
Professor Brundage was into Confederate monuments before Confederate monuments were
Does anyone have an image of the Wilson monument before its dual water fountains were removed?
— At last, Revenge is ours (or not). Including Blackbeard’s artisanal arsenal.
— eBay eye-catchers: a medal of Lost Cause honor and a poster for Louis Armstrong at Carmichael Auditorium.
— What exactly is a Confederate monument? And what should Reidsville do with the one that lost its kepied head to a reckless driver?
— Did Civil War actually claim more Virginians than North Carolinians? Don’t miss this one — keen reportage by Cameron McWhirter of the Wall Street Journal.
— Won’t you come home, George Washington?
— Asheville’s monumental forgetfulness
— Pa, you can cancel that tsunami insurance….