ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The next steps are being taken to remove a war memorial that honors Confederate soldiers in downtown St. Augustine.
On Monday, a construction company secured the memorial so it does not fall apart when it’s taken away.
The city-contracted construction company is putting metal supports around the memorial and they will also do the same thing underneath.
It is a slow, tedious process but it’s critical in keeping the memorial intact. The memorial will be removed later this week.
Though it’s Labor Day, that didn’t stop work from happening on the Confederate memorial.
“We hope to get the steel on it today and get the wheels under it,” said welder Lee Pruitt.
Clamps and beams will be used to also secure the memorial.
But as the city is working to keep the memorial intact, others are upset.
Jenna Bernstein, who is Jewish, said that Jewish Americans fought under the Confederate flag and they should be honored.
“I am a supporter of all American history, all American history equally,” she said.
The St. Augustine City Commission voted 3-2 in favor of moving the Confederate memorial from the Plaza de la Constitucion.
Others in St. Augustine want to see the memorial removed.
“We all should have that middle ground where we are working together and literally it is about love and being in unity,” Tekecia Brown said. “It’s not being destroyed it’s just being located which means it is that middle ground.”
The oldest Confederate memorial in Florida will be eventually be moved to Trout Creek Fish Camp, which was offered by the property’s owner, Randy Ringhaver.
A statue of Confederate Gen. William Loring that was located feet away was also removed last month. The University of Florida, which owns the property where the Loring monument stood, relocated the statue to private property.