The capital of Massachusetts has decided to remove a statue of former President Abraham Lincoln on the grounds that it played a role “in perpetuating hurtful prejudice” against African Americans. It had been installed in 1879.
A statue of former US President Abraham Lincoln and a newly freed slave, deemed degrading, was removed on the morning of December 29, 2020 from a Boston square by City Hall, local media reported.
The northeastern city of the United States voted in June to remove the statue, where Abraham Lincoln, behind the abolition of slavery in the country, stood above a naked black man on his knees.
A statue funded by a group of former slaves
She had motivated this decision, judging that the statue had a role “in the perpetuation of hurtful prejudices” towards the African-Americans and that it contributed to underestimate their role “in the fight for the freedom of the nation”.
Installed since 1879 in a square in the capital of Massachusetts, the statue was a replica of an 1876 statue erected in Washington. Funded by a group made up mostly of former slaves, the latter had no say in the design of the statue which was intended to commemorate the Emancipation Proclamation and to honor Abraham Lincoln.
The 16th President of the United States, nicknamed “Abe the Honest” and “the great emancipator” had abolished slavery in the United States with this Emancipation Proclamation of 1863, when the country was at the heart of a bloody civil war between the northern states, and those southern slavers.
In the wake of the protests against racial inequalities triggered by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25, several statues of historical figures such as Christopher Columbus, Theodore Roosevelt, or Robert E. Lee have been debunked or vandalized in the United States, notably in Boston, Richmond, and Washington.