Houston Matters

Historian: Juneteenth Is A Fitting Time For The Removal Of Houston’s Confederate Statues

History professor Gregory Maddox of Texas Southern University discusses the movement to take down Confederate monuments in the city.

Spirit of the Confederacy Statue
“The Spirit of the Confederacy” statue in Sam Houston Park downtown, erected in 1908.


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This week, the City of Houston removed two Confederate statues from local parks, with plans to relocate them elsewhere.

The Spirit of the Confederacy statue that formerly occupied Sam Houston Park will now be on display at the Houston Museum of African American Culture, and a statue of Confederate officer Dick Dowling from Hermann Park will end up at the Sabine Pass Battleground State Historic Site in Port Arthur. Currently, both are in storage.

The move came just before today’s celebration of Juneteenth, which commemorates the day slaves in Texas learned they were free.

In the audio above, Houston Matters host Craig Cohen talks with Dr. Gregory Maddox, professor of history and dean of the graduate school at Texas Southern University, about the movement to remove these monuments and what it means for American history.