Baltimore Just Took Down All of Its Confederate Statues Overnight

“It’s done. They needed to come down,” Mayor Catherine Pugh said.

Jerry Jackson/AP

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

The city council of Baltimore approved a plan Monday to remove Confederate statues from public spaces. By Wednesday morning, all four of the city’s memorials honoring Confederate leaders were taken down. 

“It’s done,” Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh said early Wednesday. “They needed to come down. My concern is for the safety and security of our people. We moved as quickly as we could.” 

Several journalists on the scene documented the monuments’ removals:

The swift action comes in the wake of the white supremacist protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, where organizers of the “Unite the Right” rally were objecting to the removal of a Confederate-era statue honoring Robert E. Lee. One woman was killed when a suspected white supremacist drove a car through a crowd of counter-protesters. 

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump again drew fierce condemnation over his now-repeated claim that multiple sides were behind the Charlottesville protests, not just neo-Nazis and white nationalists. He also attacked what he described as the “alt-left” for the violence.

Trump on Tuesday also appeared to criticize the renewed movement to remove Confederate statues, asking at what point would proponents be satisfied in their efforts. “Was George Washington a slave owner?” he asked in a chaotic press conference Tuesday. “Are we going to take down statues to George Washington? What about Thomas Jefferson?”

As the president equivocated over hate groups and where to place the blame for Charlottesville, cities across the country have ramped up the process to remove Confederate monuments and flags from its public spaces.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate