About 60 Confederate monuments have come down across the U.S. amid a national reckoning on race — but nearly half as many localities that considered removing their statues have decided to keep them.
NPR recently visited Marshall, Texas, and Shreveport, La. — neighboring cities that fiercely debated their Confederate monuments and had two different outcomes.
Back in July, it seemed like officials in Marshall — tucked in the piney woods of northeast Texas — were on the verge of moving their marble statue of a rebel soldier. The curly-haired infantryman gripping a muzzleloader rifle has stood beside the courthouse for 114 years.
Even Bill Elliott with the Sons of Confederate Veterans, which defends the monuments as important parts of history, was pessimistic.
“We ain’t won anywhere. I’ll be honest with you,” Elliott said earlier in the summer. “If it’s got to be moved, we’re for working with everybody. We just want it to go somewhere that’s gonna be safe.”
But Marshall’s experience shows that Confederate statues are not so easy to topple.
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