New Orleans removes statue of Confederate leader Jefferson Davis

Posted May 12, 2017

In December, the New Orleans City Council declared four monuments nuisances and the Jefferson Davis statue commemorating the former Confederate president is the second to be removed.

It was lowered on trucks and out of view of the media who had gathered on the scene.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu says the city has spoken and the courts have decided there's no reason to stop the removal.

The city began the process of taking down the statutes late last month, starting with the removal of the monument to the Battle at Liberty Place, which New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said was put up to celebrate the murder of police officers by white supremacists. City officials had refused to give advance public notice of the work because of threats of violence against contractors and workers involved in the effort.

Proponents and opponents of the removal plan have taken part in sometimes tense demonstrations at monument sites in the past.

Quess Moore said he came out to watch the monument be taken down "to celebrate the victory in the battle against white supremacy particularly in New Orleans".

The Davis and Beauregard monuments are among four in New Orleans that critics have been pushing to have dismantled. "I believe we must remember all of our history, but we need not revere it..."

Two weeks earlier, a monument to the battle of liberty place was taken down.

The fourth statue slated for removal is of Gen. Robert E. Lee, commander of the Confederate Army. Unveiled in 1884, the monument is on a mound at a traffic circle - Lee Circle - that splits historic St. Charles line and the rail line on which 1920s-era streetcars rumble by.

A New Orleans city worker wearing body armor and a face covering as he measures the Jefferson Davis monument on May 4, 2017 in New Orleans, Loiusiana. When the Confederate flag was not lowered to half-mast on the SC statehouse house grounds following the shooting - as had been done with the U.S. flag and the state flag in mourning for the victims - those pictures sparked a contentious debate that led then-Governor Nikki Haley to make a strong appeal to legislators that resulted in the flag being removed from the statehouse grounds altogether.

They tied the statue's torso with what appeared to be a long yellow banding, securing it to a crane.

In fact, a legal challenge was heard Wednesday morning on the status of the P.G.T. Beauregard monument, which sits at the entrance to City Park.

Reese denied the injunction, which would have stopped the removal of the monument until it was determined who owned the monument.

Monument supporters say their research shows the statue is not owned by the City Park Improvement Association.