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What's next for Baltimore's Confederate statues?

CONFEDERATE STATUES - CHAD COWLES.jpg

BALTIMORE (WBFF) - Now that the Confederate monuments are down in the City of Baltimore, the big question is: What will happen to them?

Once in a place of prominence, what appear to be the four Confederate statues now sit covered in tarps at the back of a city-owned lot.

The mayor is appointing a work group to decide where the statues should go from here and what should go in their place.

University of Maryland law professor Larry Gibson said: “Lots of other things should be preserved, but not necessarily in a place of honor.”

Gibson was a member of the commission that recommended the removal of two of the statues last year.

The monuments are owned by the City of Baltimore, but three of them are overseen by the Maryland Historical Trust, which intended for them to be in a place of public display.

“If the city wanted to just destroy them so they wouldn't be available, they would have to ask the Maryland Historical Trust for permission,” said Gibson.

Many cemeteries that previously expressed interest are shying away from the displays, now afraid of disruption. According to the mayor, universities and museums have also expressed interest in the past.

The Confederate Women’s Statue was created by J. Maxwell Miller, a local artist, who was also the director of the Rinehart School of Sculpture at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) back in the 1920s.

MICA President Sammy Hoi released a statement today saying the Institute advocates for artistic expression and provocative ideas.

However, he “unambiguously endorses” the mayor’s decision to remove the monuments, saying that MICA is “vehemently against bigotry, racial hatred and violence.”

A MICA spokesperson said: “As for what will happen to the statue, that is fully within the purview of the city to make that decision.”

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