Alabama showed early initiative in dealing with memorial statuary.
In 2009, a bronze statue of the 7-year old Helen Keller was placed in the National Statuary Hall Collection of the United States Capitol. The statue replaced one of Confederate General Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry.
Each state is permitted to place statues of two of its prominent citizens in the Statuary Hall collection. Alabama’s other representative is General Joseph (“Fighting Joe”) Wheeler, also a former Confederate general.
Any initiative to remove and replace Wheeler’s statue will call down rebukes from those who know that following the Civil War he performed valiantly in the United States Army in both the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars. In the latter, he served with Theodore Roosevelt’s famed “Rough Riders.”
John P. Crowder