University of North Carolina Proposes Building a House for “Silent Sam”

Silent Sam

The University of North Carolina is proposing a $5.3 million dollar building to house a Confederate monument that was recently toppled by students. Here is a taste of an article at CNN:

Administrators at the University of North Carolina are proposing a new $5.3 million building to safely house a controversial Confederate monument that was toppled by protesters in August.

UNC Chancellor Carol Folt said that experts concluded that the rifle-carrying statue, known as “Silent Sam,” could not be returned to its previous home on campus because of public safety concerns.

However, the statue also cannot legally be moved to a museum, mausoleum or cemetery because of a state law that limits the removal of public monuments.

So the university plans to build a new indoor facility on campus to house Silent Sam, Folt said on Monday. The new building, at a proposed cost of $5.3 million plus another $800,000 in annual operating costs, will provide historical context for the statue and for the university’s broader history.

“(We plan to) make it a truly strong interactive center that tells our full history of this university, from before settlement to its emergence this day as one of the leading public state research universities in America,” Folt said.

Read the rest here.

Other coverage:

The Chronicle of Higher Education

Students at UNC are not happy about the decision.

Adam Harris reports at The Atlantic

The editorial board of the Charlotte Observer opposes the building.

I am sure some American historians will weigh-in today.

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