Wisconsin woman outraged at Confederate monument removal from Ma - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Wisconsin woman outraged at Confederate monument removal from Madison cemetery

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What's left of a Confederate monument at Forest Hill Cemetary What's left of a Confederate monument at Forest Hill Cemetary

A Wisconsin woman is voicing her outrage over Madison Mayor Paul Soglin's order to remove Confederate monuments from Forest Hill Cemetery.

“I know where all the memorials are. I don't even think the Wisconsin Veterans Museum know where all the Civil War memorials are,” said Melinda Roberts, who has taken more than 2,100 photos of veterans memorials around the state.

Soon after moving to De Pere in 2011, Roberts was diagnosed with stage-3 colon cancer and given two years to live.

She wanted to learn as much as she could about her new state during that time, so she grabbed her camera and started exploring, photographing veterans memorials.

“I have photographed 240 civil wars memorials in Wisconsin,” she said.

She was pretty angry when she heard that Soglin had ordered markers of confederate soldiers buried at Forest Hill Cemetery to be removed.

“There was no reason to remove this innocuous marker, which almost nobody knew about to start with,” she said.

“There had been some discussion over the last year or two within the community that preceded this weekends events,” Soglin said.

Roberts thinks the move was a knee-jerk reaction to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend.

“The memorials are where they are. And to start removing them now, in this climate, is in my opinion is just going to inflame things,” Roberts said.

“This is a cemetery. These 140 people died in a prisoner of war camp,” said former city council member Steve Holtzman.

“The soldiers are buried there because they died in Wisconsin. And they were treated with respect and buried,” Roberts said.

She argues the markers do not advocate slavery or racism.

“It was simply a historical marker that identified that this is where the soldiers from this battalion were buried,”

Roberts said she was cancer-free last year, but in January the cancer returned. Doctors told her she wouldn't make it to the end of the year.

But she said as long as she still around, she'll keep fighting for those civil war veterans.

There are 140 civil war soldiers buried at Forest Hill Cemetery. The markers were erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

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