Monument to North Carolina Women of the Confederacy, Raleigh
The seven foot tall monument, made possible through a private donation, honors the hardships and sacrifices of North Carolina women during the Civil War. A bronze sculpture depicts an older woman, a grandmotherly figure, holding a book as she sits next to a young boy holding a sword. It sits on top of a granite base with bronze bas-relief plaques. The woman, representing the women in the South as the custodians of history, imparts the history of the Civil War to the boy. The two relief plaques portray the Civil War; the eastern side shows soldiers departing for war and leaving their loved ones behind, while the western side depicts a weary or injured Confederate soldier returning home.
Images: Contemporary view | East view | West plaque | East plaque | Rear view
Vintage postcard image of the monument
Crews removing the Monument to North Carolina Women of the Confederacy in downtown Raleigh
South face: TO THE /NORTH CAROLINA WOMEN / OF THE CONFEDERACY.
North face: PRESENTED TO / THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA / BY / ASHLEY HORNE / ERECTED 1914
The State of North Carolina
June 10, 1914
35.779720 , -78.639650 View in Geobrowse
"Ashley Horne's Gift From Heart," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), December 14, 1911
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Bronze sculpture and bas-reliefs, Mt. Airy granite base.
Colonel Ashley Horne
The monument was dedicated on June 10, 1914 with the acceptance address delivered by Governor Locke Craig. Governor Craig described the "epic" meaning of the monument's elements with its "themes of heroism and devotion" and the "inheritance of children of the South" from the sacrifice of their grandmothers to the swords of their fathers.
This monument was the first in North Carolina to honor the women of the Civil War era. After several failed attempts to erect a monument to Confederate women, due to insufficient fundraising and state appropriation, the monument was made possible by a donation from Colonel Ashley Horne, who died before it was unveiled. Horne paid for the monument after a series of legislative attempts failed to appropriate money for the construction of the monument. A brief post in the Confederate Veteran in 1912 indicated that the design created by sculptor Belle Kinney, originally of Nashville and then living in New York City, had been selected for the monument (Vol. 20, p. 9). Kinney's sculptural rendering of the women of the Confederacy placed in both Jackson, Mississippi (1917) and Nashville, Tennessee (1926) was very different depiction compared to the Raleigh monument. This may have been design of the original failed attempt to erect a monument.
Public outcry arose when a walkway was proposed near the Women of the Confederacy monument in August of 1913 by North Carolina Supreme Court Justice Walter Clark in front of the newly erected Supreme Court building. The proposal was eventually abandoned by the Board of Public Buildings and Grounds on account of the protests.
An article in the June 12, 1912 issue of The News and Observer reported on details and progress of the monument. It reported on a recent article in the New York Herald indicating that the architectural component of the monument, to be created in the form of an exedra, was in the charge of Henry Bacon, the designer of the Lincoln Monument in the Nation's capital. The Lincoln monument construction was in progress from 1914 to 1922.
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.
The monument to North Carolina Women of the Confederacy was removed from the North Carolina Capitol grounds on Saturday morning June 20, 2020 along with the Henry Lawson Wyatt Monument. The statue atop the Confederate Monument was also removed but the equipment on site was insufficient to remove the main column of the 75-foot tall memorial. That task was completed on June 23, 2020. Governor Roy Cooper had ordered all three monuments removed after demonstrators on June 19 had pulled down two statues at the base of the Confederate Memorial and dragged them down W. Hargett Street. One was left hanging from a light pole and the other left on the steps of Wake County Courthouse. "I have ordered the Confederate monuments on the Capitol grounds be moved to protect public safety. I am concerned about the dangerous efforts to pull down and carry off large, heavy statues and the strong potential for violent clashes at the site. If the legislature had repealed their 2015 law that puts up legal roadblocks to removal we could have avoided the dangerous incidents of last night," Cooper said. "Monuments to white supremacy don't belong in places of allegiance, and its past time that these painful memorials be moved in a legal, safe way."
The memorial was removed on June 20, 2020. As of August 2020, it is being stored at an undisclosed location.
The monument stood on the grounds of the North Carolina State Capitol in Raleigh, NC. It was located on West Morgan Street, facing south. Nicely landscaped grounds of the NC State Capitol lawn were right behind the memorial.
An alternate form of the monument was proposed in which the older woman told the story of the Civil War to a young girl instead of boy, thus representing the role of women in perpetuating the history of the South. However, the monument committee voted to use a young boy in the grouping instead. North Carolina legislators proposed a bill to allot $10,000 to build a memorial to women of the confederacy in 1909. The bill failed. After failing again to pass an appropriation for the monument in 1911, Ashley Horne donated $10,000 to build the monument.