The statue of a freed slave kneeling beside Abraham Lincoln has been removed after it reportedly made people feel uncomfortable.
The Emancipation Memorial, which was located at Park Square in downtown Boston, has been officially retired amid racial unrest in America.
Calls for the monument’s removal came along nationwide protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, whereas a series of racist and offensive statues have been removed in recent months.
The bronze statue in question depicts Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the U.S., and a freed slave who is kneeling by his side. The statue is a copy of the 1876 memorial created by Thomas Ball and displayed, up to this day, at Washington’s Lincoln Park.
In 1879, three years after the original statue was created, the bronze copy was provided with a home at Boston’s Park Square where it remained for 141 years until this Tuesday.
“It’s an amazing funeral, I’m here to provide a silent eulogy for this piece of artwork that’s been here for 141 years,” Tory Bullock, a social media influencer and activist who petitioned for the statue’s removal, said in an interview with CBS Local.
“I’m proud, I’m Black, and I’m young. This image has been doing a lot of disservice to African-Americans in Boston and now it stops.”
The City agreed to take down the ‘offensive’ statue after over 12,000 people signed the petition for its removal. While the Boston Art Commission voted in favor of the statue’s removal back in June, they didn’t provide the exact date of when this would happen.
As Boston Mayor Marty Walsh previously said, both visitors as well as locals were left feeling “uncomfortable” because of the statue.
“After engaging in a public process, it’s clear that residents and visitors to Boston have been uncomfortable with this statue,” he insisted.
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