Judah P. Benjamin Memorial, Charlotte
The memorial for Judah Benjamin, who was variously Attorney General, Secretary of War and Secretary of State for the Confederacy, is a simple flat arch granite tablestone. Set into the sidewalk in downtown Charlotte, it has a finished front facing a building with the unfinished back facing the street. It marks the spot of the home where he stayed while visiting Charlotte near the end of the Civil War.
IN MEMORY OF / JUDAH P. BENJAMIN / ATTORNEY GENERAL, SECRETARY / OF WAR, AND SECRETARY OF STATE / OF THE CONFEDERATE GOVERNMENT. / HE WAS THE GUEST OF ABRAM WEIL / APRIL 18-26, 1865, WHOSE HOME / STOOD ON THIS SITE.
THIS MONUMENT WAS ERECTED IN / HIS HONOR BY TEMPLE ISRAEL / AND TEMPLE BETH EL, THE JEWISH / CONGREGATIONS OF CHARLOTTE, AS / A GIFT TO THE NORTH CAROLINA / DIVISION, UNITED DAUGHTERS OF / THE CONFEDERACY. / OCTOBER 1, 1948
City of Charlotte
October 1, 1948
35.225920 , -80.844740 View in Geobrowse
"Judah Philip Benjamin," Find a Grave, findagrave.com, (accessed January 25, 2017) Link
Solomon, Zachary. “What to Do About the Jewish Slaveholders?” JEWNIVERSE, http://thejewniverse.com, October 19, 2015, (accessed January 18, 2017) Link
“Judah Benjamin,” Jewish Virtual Library, jewishvirtuallibrary.org, (accessed January 18, 2017) Link
“Monument Honoring Jew Is Unveiled At UDC Conference,” The Daily Times-News (Burlington, NC), October 1, 1948
The Jewish Congregations of Temple Israel and Temple Beth El
The memorial was dedicated during the North Carolina Division, United Daughters of the Confederacy Conference held in Charlotte in October 1948.
Benjamin was raised in Charleston, South Carolina, the son of Sephardic Jews who had emigrated from England via the West Indies. After attending Yale, Benjamin moved to New Orleans, where he became a lawyer and wealthy slave owner. He was a United States Senator representing Louisiana when the Civil War broke out and offered his services to the Confederacy. Jefferson Davis appointed him Attorney General making him the first Jew to hold a cabinet level position in an American government. After the Civil War he fled to exile in England where he became a barrister and eventually a counsel to Queen Victoria. He is considered to be one of the least understood and most controversial figures in Jewish American history. He has been called “the brains of the Confederacy” by some historians and then blamed for the South’s defeat by others. He died on May 6, 1884 in Paris, France.
The memorial is located at 237 S Tryon St, Charlotte, NC. It stands in front of a building that currently houses a FedEx Office Print & Ship Center.
The memorial marker stands on a sidewalk, with the inscription facing the FedEx building.