Confederate statue will head north and join Jubal Early ferry in Dickerson
The last battle of the Civil War in the County is perhaps finally over.
After deciding to remove the Confederate soldier statue about a year ago, the County found a new home for it Tuesday, deciding to relocate the statue to White’s Ferry in Dickerson.
The statue, built in 1913 with donations from the Daughters of the Confederacy, was dedicated to County residents who fought for the South during the Civil War. The inscription on the statue reads, “To Our Heroes of Montgomery County Maryland: That We Through Life May Not Forget to Love the Thin Gray Line.”
Currently, the statue sits next to the Old Brick Courthouse in downtown Rockville, surrounded by a wooden box covering part of the statue to prevent graffiti.
“I fully understand that the statue reflects a piece of County history and that many County residents are proud of the sacrifices and bravery shown by their ancestors,” said County Executive Ike Leggett, who was in favor of moving the statue. “Nonetheless, as originally enacted, it was not and is not part of the heritage of all of our residents. When originally constructed and placed on County property, it failed to reflect both sides of this unfortunate struggle in our history.”
Now the statue will be moved to White’s Ferry, a historic ferry that has connected Dickerson to Loudon County, Virginia, since 1786 and is named after Confederate General Jubal A. Early.
“I am happy to provide a place for the statue to be relocated,” said R. Edwin Brown, an attorney for White’s Ferry Inc. in a statement. “Those who wish to visit it will be able to do just that.”
A representative from White’s Ferry did not return an interview request for this story.
On Tuesday, the County also opened bids to relocate the 25,000- pound statue from the Red Brick Courthouse to White’s Ferry, where the County will cover the cost of moving the statue.
For more than a year, the 16-foot Confederate statue has created debate among residents and between the City of Rockville and the County. The statue currently resides on County land, and Leggett previously proposed last year to move the statue to Beall-Dawson House property, but the Rockville City Council rejected the idea.
The move to White’s Ferry ends more than a year of debate on the appropriateness of a Confederate statue on public grounds, and it will now be owned by White’s Ferry on Private land. The statue is the only veterans statue in Montgomery County.
Some have said the statue is a reminder of a shameful past of the County, one that honored the Confederacy and its cause, while others said the statue is a monument to the County’s history.
“It’s unfortunately part of our history. We got to put it somewhere,” said Rockville resident Brad Botwin.