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Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    Confederate Soldiers Monument, Hertford

  • Type

    Obelisk

  • Subjects

    Civil War, 1861-1865

  • Creator

    McNeel Marble Company, Marietta, GA, Supplier

  • City

    Hertford

  • County

    Perquimans

  • Description

    The monument has a low two tiered granite base with rusticated edges topped by an obelisk resting on a finished granite plinth. In high relief on the plinths front face is a furled Confederate battle flag and the years 1861 and 1865. Below the flag is the words OUR SOLDIERS. Crossed sabers still in their scabbards adorn the monuments back face.

    Efforts to have this monument removed in 2021 failed. Instead two interpretive markers were placed in 2023. The markers consist of bronze plaques on small lectern shaped granite blocks placed to either side of a brick walkway around the monument. The first 2023 marker refers to the Colored Union Soldiers Monument, in Hertford.

    Images: View of the Veterans Memorial and Jim “Catfish” Hunter Memorial to the right of the entrance to the historic Perquimans County Courthouse

  • Inscription

    Front: 1861 / 1865 / OUR SOLDIERS

    Side, left: “THEY FOUGHT FOR WHAT THEY / BELIEVED TO BE RIGHT / AND SEALED THEIR / FAITH IN BLOOD.”

    Side, right: ERECTED BY / PERQUIMANS CHAPTER / U.D.C. / IN THE YEAR OF OUR LORD / 1912.

    2023 marker inscription #1: PERQUIMANS COUNTY IS HOME TO ONE OF THE FEW / MONUMENTS IN THE NATION HONORING THOSE / AFRICAN AMERICAN SOLDIERS WHO FOUGHT FOR THE / UNION IN THE CIVIL WAR OF 1861-1865. / THE MONUMENT, LOCATED NEARBY ON THE CORNER / OF HYDE PARK AND KING STREET, ERECTED IN / 1910 TO HONOR THE BRAVERY OF THOSE LOCAL TROOPS / WHO FOUGHT FOR THE CAUSE OF THEIR FREEDOM.

    2023 marker inscription #2: RESIDENTS OF PERQUIMANS COUNTY UNVEILED THIS MONUMENT TO THE CONFEDERATE DEAD IN 1912. THE MONUMENT WAS ESTABLISHED TO HONOR THE MEMORY OF LOCAL CONFEDERATE SOLDIERS WHO SACRIFICED THEIR LIVES IN THE CIVIL WAR. DUE TO THE HEAVY QUAKER INFLUENCE IN THE COUNTY, MANY PERQUIMANS RESIDENTS OPPOSED SECESSION AND OTHERS ENLISTED IN THE UNION ARMY. CONSEQUENTLY, THE UNION VICTORY IN 1865 ENDED SLAVERY AND GUARANTEED A LASTING FREEDOM FOR MILLIONS OF PEOPLE.

  • Custodian

    Perquimans County

  • Dedication Date

    June 12, 1912

  • Decade

    1910s

  • Geographic Coordinates

    36.189200 , -76.465600 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      "Perquimans County Confederate Monument --- Hertford North Carolina," Waymarking.com, (accessed August 12, 2020) Link

      Butler, Douglas J. North Carolina Civil War Monuments, An Illustrated History, (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2013) 147,224

      Kearney, Jr.,H. Thomas. “Clingman, Thomas Lanier,” NCPedia.org, (accessed June 5, 2015) Link

      Layton, Miles. "Town Council Asks Commission to Remove Statue," The Daily Advance (Elizabeth City, N.C.), dailyadvance.com, August 6, 2020, (accessed August 12, 2020) Link

      Layton, Miles. “Panel: Keep Perquimans Confederate Monument at Courthouse, Add Signage,” The Daily Advance (Elizabeth City, NC), June 24, 2021 (accessed August 17, 2023) Link

      Ponder, Reggie. “Perquimans Board OKs Language for Signs at Monument,” The Daily Advance (Elizabeth City, NC), April 11, 2022 (accessed August 17, 2023) Link

      Ponder. Reggie. “Signs Placed Near Confederate Monument in Perquimans,” The Daily Advance (Elizabeth City, NC), June 15, 2023 (accessed August 17, 2023) Link

      “Confederate Monument Unveiled at Hertford,” North Carolina Christian Advocate (Greensboro, NC), June 27, 1912

      “Confederate Monument Unveiled at Hertford,” The Advance (Elizabeth City, NC), June 14, 1912

      “Confederate Monument, Hertford, NC,” in Durwood Barbour Collection of North Carolina Postcards (PO77), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Link

      “Record of Perquimans Soldiers in the War for Secession,” The Advance (Elizabeth City, NC), June 21, 1912

  • Public Site

    Yes

  • Materials & Techniques

    Granite

  • Sponsors

    Perquimans Chapter United Daughters of the Confederacy

  • Monument Cost

    $2,000

  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    On June 12, 1912, the dedication and unveiling services began at 11:30 with The Italian band of the Adams Carnival striking up an old plantation tune, “The Old Folks At Home.” Charles Whidbee was master of ceremonies and Reverend F.M. Shamburger pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church gave the invocation. The crowd joined in the singing of “The Old North State” before Taps was played as the monument was unveiled by three young girls and two boys.
    As taps ended, the Hertford and Elizabeth City Naval Reserve unit fired a salute with their carriage gun and rifle volleys. The band then played “Dixie” followed by a rebel yell and the playing of “America.” Mr. P.W. McMullen introduced Judge Walter Clark the orator for the day. Clark, who spoke at six North Carolina Confederate monument dedications, related the history of Perquimans County troops in the war. He noted that the county was small and contained so many slaves it could not provide many troops to the Southern cause. It was also occupied for three years of the war by Northern troops which made it hard for its citizens to reach Southern lines to offer support. After Clark concluded his speech the ceremony ended with the singing of “The Bonnie Blue Flag” by the audience.

  • Subject Notes

    Judge Walter Clark was one of the most sought out orators of his time. He had a long and distinguished legal and political career and was a preeminent North Carolina Civil War historian. He edited the Histories of the Several Regiments and Battalions from North Carolina, in the Great War 1861 – 1865 (5 vols., 1901). He also battled on the side of “socialized democracy.” He was a supporter of women’s suffrage; labor’s right to organize and called for the ending of the poll tax and for the end to lynchings. To learn more about Walter Clark read his biographical essay "Clark, Walter McKenzie" by David Clark and Charles W. Eagles.

    The statue was sold by the McNeel Marble Company from Marietta, Georgia, which produced many other Confederate statues and sold them all over the South, including Macon County Confederate Monument in Franklin, Pasquotank County Confederate Monument in Elizabeth City, Alamance County Confederate Monument in Graham, and Confederate Monument in Durham.

  • Controversies

    Following the massacre of nine African Americans in a church in Charleston, South Carolina on June 17, 2015 by white supremacist Dylann Roof, Americans, especially southerners, have reflected on and argued over the historical legacy of slavery, the Civil War, the Confederacy, and white supremacy. Monuments have been a particular focus of these debates and controversies, especially after the death of a counter-protester, Heather Heyer, at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in August 2017 and after President Donald Trump expressed his opposition to the removal of Confederate memorials. Despite laws in many southern states intended to prevent or impede the removal or relocation of historical monuments, protesters and local community leaders have removed or relocated controversial monuments associated with slavery, the Confederacy, and white supremacy. The pace of the removal of controversial monuments accelerated sharply in 2020, following the death of George Floyd at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Against the backdrop of protests against police brutality and white supremacy across the nation, local authorities in many communities in North Carolina removed and/or relocated monuments that were the focus of civil unrest.

    On July 13, 2020, the Town of Hertford’s Town Council voted to request the removal of the Confederate monument from its location on the courthouse green. The County Commission’s response was to form a study committee to review its options and make a recommendation on a course of action. The study committee in June 2021 recommended that the monument not be removed but interpretive signs be placed nearby. The recommendation was approved by the commissioners shortly after. In April 2022 the commissioners approved the language for two signs to be placed at either side of a walkway around the Confederate Monument and provided a budget of up to $7,500. After supply chain issues delayed delivery of the signs they were eventually placed in June 2023. Perquimans County Commissioner Joseph W. Hoffler, who originally sought to have the Confederate monument removed from the courthouse green, said he appreciates the historical context that the signs provide the monument. “I never thought I would say this, but it is better than moving the monument,” Hoffler said of the signs. “It educates people about the Civil War. I like the educational aspect of it. I like that better.”

  • Location

    The monument is located on N. Church Street between E. Grubb and E. Market Streets in Hertford, NC. A Veterans Memorial and a monument to Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Jim “Catfish” Hunter stand nearby. The "Honoring Kilcocanen and the Yeopim Indians" plaque is a few steps away.

  • Landscape

    The memorial stands on the front lawn of the historic Perquimans County courthouse, to the left of the building entrance.

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