Controversy over proposed civil war memorial - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Controversy over proposed civil war memorial

A private company plans to build a memorial to civil war black soldiers at two Memphis parks. But there is controversy over who will and will not be included.

Historian Arthur Webb has a plan to turn these parks into memorials to Black soldiers who served in the Union army during the Civil War.

But some feel telling that story is only telling half of history.

Knox Martin with the Sons of Confederate Veterans says Black Confederate soldiers should be honored as well.

"To me it just sets a bad example, if parts of history you don't agree with or you just want to ignore, you just leave it out and I just think that's wrong, its all a part of history," Martin said.

Arthur Webb says he's only interested in honoring the contributions of black soldiers who he feels helped unite the country.

"I'm sure they believed in what they were doing, I'm sure there are crips and bloods who are black who believe in what they're doing that doesn't mean I'm supposed to support them because they're black," Webb said.

The Sons of Confederate Veterans has funds set aside for its own tribute to Black confederate soldiers..markers and a statue that will go up in the city's three confederate parks.Next week the full city council is expected to vote on a committee recommendation to allow Webb's group to lease Army and Navy Parks for $1 until 2008.

Webb says the next step is finding funding for the Black Union Soldier Memorial.

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