A new historical marker has gone up in Atlanta, and it is raising questions about historical “revisionism” and how events in the past– especially destructive and emotionally-fraught events, such as Sherman’s March to the Sea– how remembered and memorialized, how they are — literally– set in stone for the future.
“There’s still a strong resentment for what happened and how it happened and for Sherman himself,” Dr. James C. Cobb said. “They want to whitewash everything and make it so much nicer than it was. It wasn’t nice. War isn’t.
“You all the time run into college kids who don’t know which side Sherman was on — and their parents and certainly their grandparents would be aghast to know that. It’s not just a matter of education. It’s a matter of being the blank slate that younger generations present for revision or education that older generations don’t because they’re steeped in the mythology of their ancestors.”
This article is about the opening of the first offices in the new World Trade Center. I find it interesting that the new World Trade Center is both a memorial to 9/11 and, as this article says, “a symbolic return to some sort of normalcy” for the site of the biggest tragedy on American soil.
Quite a while ago, as we walked along the grounds of the State Capitol, Mr. Horrigan told us about both the monuments and statues we saw and those far away. We discussed monuments and the variety of media which could be a monument, the function of monuments, and what aspects make a quality monument. In the (almost) exact words of Mr. Horrigan, “Planes are commonly used as monuments.” Well….VOILA! I found one on my recent travels through O’Hare airport.
An airplane as part of a monument dedicated to Lt. Cmdr. Edward Henry “Butch” O’Hare.
More than 200 Minnesota firefighters who died on the job will be honored in a day long memorial service at the state Capitol on Sunday.
The Pioneer Press reports this is the second year of the ceremony, held on the last Sunday of September, which is the state’s official day to honor its fallen firefighters. According to the Minnesota Fire Service Foundation, the names of the 208 Minnesota firefighters who died in the line of duty have are inscribed on columns on the Fallen Firefighter Memorial. The structure was constructed on the south side of the Capitol grounds last year.
Gov. Mark Dayton and firefighters from all over the state will be part of the gathering, as will families of those who are being honored for their sacrifice. KSTP reports that at least 30 members of one St Paul firefighter’s family plan to attend.
Southwest Patch has a schedule for the events of the day:
- 10:45 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. – Non-denominational prayer service
- Noon – Honor guard personnel will read the honor roll
- 1:45 p.m. – Families enter the Capitol grounds and escorted to their seats.
- 1:58 p.m. – Bells across Minnesota will ring to honor the state’s fallen firefighters.
- 2 p.m. – Service begins and is scheduled to conclude at 3:30 p.m.
This article is from back in July in the NY Times, but I did find it interesting. A group vowing to put up monuments to protest other monuments they were unable to get down.
Atheists unveiled the nation’s first public monument to secularism outside a county courthouse in Florida last week — a 1,500-pound gray granite bench engraved with quotations extolling the separation of church and state. To Fight Religious Monuments
This is a great and clearly angry essay on the memory of the Birmingham bombings 50th anniversary, and the pathetic inadequacy of erecting memorials to such horrors.
“We are more comfortable devoting civic resources to media events and monuments, like the life-size sculpture of the girls unveiled in Birmingham this week, than addressing the persistent casualties of the history being commemorated.”
via Civil Rights Justice on the Cheap – NYTimes.com.