Lexington Mayor Jim Gray will ask the urban county council this week to petition the state to relocate two confederate monuments that stand in the heart of downtown.
In a Youtube video released Sunday, Mayor Gray said his family has ties to America’s Civil War.
Three of my great great uncles fought at the battle of Shiloh in Mississippi. Two on the side of the union and one for the confederacy. When we were children my parents took us to visit the battle site. All of that is to say that nothing about a decision like this is casual for me or for any of us,” said Gray.
During the three minute video, Gray says it’s just not right to honor John Hunt Morgan and John Breckinridge who fought to preserve slavery on the same grounds at Cheapside where men, women, and children were once sold into slavery.
The mayor suggested the statues be moved to a community park.
"Relocating these statues and explaining them is the right thing to do. And that’s why I’ve recommended to our council that they be placed along our Veterans Park War Memorial Walk together with two monuments to the union effort. In that setting, we can tell the story accurately and share a truthful history,” explained Gray.
The mayor’s request comes following a weekend death in Charlottesville, Virginia when a car plowed into a group of counter protesters at a white nationalist rally. Two Virginia state police troopers also died in a helicopter crash while carrying out enforcement efforts related to the event.