UT to remove statues of Jefferson, Wilson on Sunday

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The Jefferson Davis statue was not removed from the Main Mall due to a temporary restraining order filed by the Sons of Confederate Veterans. The order will be heard by a district judge today.
The Jefferson Davis statue was not removed from the Main Mall due to a temporary restraining order filed by the Sons of Confederate Veterans. The order will be heard by a district judge today.

The University will remove the Jefferson Davis and Woodrow Wilson statues from the Main Mall on Aug. 30.

According to a press release, moving preparations and wrapping of the statues will begin at 9 a.m., and the lifting and removal of the statues will occur around 10 a.m.

The Jefferson Davis statue will be relocated to the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History. University spokeswoman Rhonda Wheldon said a new location for the Woodrow Wilson statue has not yet been determined.

Wheldon said she has not heard of any new legal actions or filings on the part of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.  

The removal of both statues were originally scheduled for Aug. 15, until the Sons of Confederate Veterans filed a temporary restraining order attempting to prevent the University from doing so.

On Aug. 27, in a temporary injunction hearing, a judge did not grant the injunction to the Sons of Confederate Veterans and allowed UT to remove the statues.   

Kirk Lyons, attorney for the Sons of Confederate Veterans, said relocating the Davis statue to the Briscoe Center goes against the will of former regent and university donor George W. Littlefield.

Gregory Vincent, vice president of diversity and community affairs, said the center will provide a place for the University community, as well as visitors, to see the statue.

"The fact that it would be placed in one of the world's history centers is a prominent location," Vincent said Friday at the hearing. "As a professor for over 20 years, learning happens beyond the classroom. The Briscoe Center is a well-received place for students not only at UT but K-12 and community members."