UPDATE: Madison Common Council votes to remove Confederate monum - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Madison Common Council votes to remove Confederate monuments from cemetery

Posted: Updated:
Confederate monument at Forest Hills cemetery. Confederate monument at Forest Hills cemetery.

UPDATE (WKOW) -- Madison's Common Council voted to remove the remaining Confederate monument from Forest Hill Cemetery.

The large cenotaph bears the names of the Confederate soldiers who are buried in that part of the cemetery. 

It will now be offered to the State Historical Society or the Wisconsin Veterans Memorial.

The unanimous decision comes after the council received three recommendations from different commissions. 

Before the vote, a number of citizens spoke on both sides of the issue. 

"If a community such as ours cannot find a way to remove a Confederate monument, how can other communities in which opposition is far greater and at times violent, remove Confederate monuments," asked Leaonard Cizewski?

But another man argued the cenotaph should remain because those who put it up have a right to free speech. 

"There is nothing defensive on that monument. If you're going to take down these monuments, then you mine as well take this flag down because it is discrimination to American history is what this is," said Jonathan Phelps as he pointed to the American flag. 

There's no word yet on when the remaining Confederate monument will be taken down. 

A smaller plaque was removed back in 2017. It, too, will be offered to the State Historical Society or Wisconsin Veterans Memorial. 

27 News will have more on this story tonight at 10.


MADISON (WKOW) -- A vote is scheduled to take place at Madison's Common Council meeting on Tuesday evening that could establish a plan for the Confederate monuments in Forest Hill Cemetery. 

Three different commissions gave their individual recommendations to the council. 

The Equal Opportunities Commission believes the current monuments should be taken down to prevent glorifying the so-called "Lost Cause" movement. The commission believes the removed monuments should be given to the Wisconsin Historical Society for storage. Members also believe no new monuments should be erected in their place. 

The Board of Park commissioners support the removal of the smaller marker that has already been removed, and believes the large cenotaph should remain there untouched. The commission believes an additional sign should be implemented that explains the historical significance to that part of the cemetery. 

The Landmarks Commission recommended that the large cenotaph should also remain standing. Alder Marsha Rummel was the only opposing vote in the commission. The Landmarks Commission also voted to add signage should be placed by the monument explaining the historical context and significance of the area. 

Alders will bring up the issue for public comment and for debate at the meeting that starts at 6:30 p.m. at the City-County Building. 

Powered by Frankly