Two statues of Confederate generals will be removed from parks in Memphis, Tenn., after the city sold the parks to a nonprofit on Wednesday.
The Memphis Commercial Appeal reports that the Memphis City Council unanimously approved the sale of two public parks — Health Science Park and its easement in Fourth Bluff Park — that contain statues of Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest and Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
The city faced numerous legal hurdles in attempting to remove the statues from the parks, including challenges from the Tennessee Historical Commission denying the city’s application to remove one of the statues.
The nonprofit that purchased the parks, Greenspace, signed a contract with the city last week that would require them to continue to operate the space as a park, according to the newspaper.
“Health Sciences Park and Memphis Park have been sold,” Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said Wednesday night after the vote. “Operations on those sites tonight are being conducted by a private entity and are compliant with state law. We will have further updates later tonight.”
City Council member Janis Fullilove told the Commercial Appeal it was a “crazy, crazy night.”
"It's really going down in history that this is the night they are going to take the statues down," she told the newspaper. "It's a historic moment.”
The city also said it hopes to move the graves of Forrest and his wife, which currently reside underneath the statue, to their original burial location in Elmwood Cemetery.