PITTSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) — Officials in Chatham County said Tuesday night that removal of a Pittsboro Confederate monument had started.
The monument’s future had been the subject of many weekend protests and counter-protests, with 11 people arrested Saturday, according to Chatham County deputies.
“Crews are working to safely and respectfully dismantle the Confederate monument, which includes the statue and pedestal,” a news release sent Tuesday night said.
Officials said the statue and pedestal will be taken to “a safe location” where they will be preserved and stored until such time as the Winnie Davis Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) “finds a more appropriate location to place them.”
“The last several months have been a painful time for Chatham County. We’ve experienced high emotions, division, and even violence, which have impacted residents, businesses and the overall feel of our community,” said Chatham County Board of Commissioners Chair Mike Dasher in a release sent Wednesday morning. “What’s clear now is that the overwhelming majority of our residents are eager to move forward.”
Because the monument was located in the downtown Pittsboro circle, which is a major intersection of two U.S. highways, Chatham County officials “decided to conduct the monument removal project at night to better ensure public safety and lessen the impact to the traveling public, especially school buses and other morning commuter traffic,” the release said.
Officials said that the area was “an active construction zone” and some roads were closed there. They were reopened by 6:45 a.m.
The monument, pedestal and base were completely removed by 5:30 a.m. Wednesday.