ARLINGTON COUNTY, Va. (DC News Now) — As part of the process of removing the Confederate memorial from Arlington National Cemetery (ANC), something mandated by the U.S. Congress, ANC and Army National Military Cemeteries (ANMC) are asking people to submit comments.
The memorial, which is located in Section 16 of the cemetery, was unveiled in 1914.
A description of the memorial on Arlington National Cemetery’s website notes: “The elaborately designed monument offers a nostalgic, mythologized vision of the Confederacy, including highly sanitized depictions of slavery…Thirty-two life-sized figures depict mythical gods alongside Southern soldiers and civilians. Two of these figures are portrayed as African American: an enslaved woman depicted as a ‘Mammy,’ holding the infant child of a white officer, and an enslaved man following his owner to war.”
It was a couple of years ago that Congress established a commission to look at Department of Defense sites and assets that had names with ties to the Confederacy (Confederate States of America) or similar connections. As a result, name changes have taken place. Memorials and monuments have been removed/relocated.
As part of the process of removing the memorial from Arlington National Cemetery, the Department of the Army will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and conduct the Section 106 public consultation process under the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) to address potential environmental effects associated with the removal.
ANC said there would be a virtual public hearing on Aug. 23, 2023. People also will find a public comment form here. The cemetery’s website said that comments submitted by 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 2, 2023 would be considered in preparation of the Draft EIS and the Identification of Historic Properties under Section 106.