The old fight used to be over the removal of Confederate statues from parks, now it seems that bodies have to be removed, too.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans this week dropped a pending lawsuit against the City of Memphis, which paved the way for the bodies of Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife, Mary Ann, to be removed from a city park.
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The graves of the Confederate general and his wife will be relocated, WREG.com reported. The agreement was made outside court and the report said both sides are happy with the conclusion. The Commercial Appeal reported that the agreement ends the fight over the 2017 removal of Forrest’s statue and the statue of Jefferson Davis, the Confederate president.
The bodies of Forrest and his wife had been placed underneath the statue in the park and are now expected to leave Memphis for an undetermined location.
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“At some point, we will move forward with the last remaining issue [the graves],” Edward Phillips, the attorney for the veterans organization, told the paper. He reportedly praised the owner of the park, Greenspace and the city for their cooperation in resolving the issue.
Forrest was a Confederate cavalry general who made a fortune as a plantation owner and slave trader before the outbreak of the Civil War, the Associated Press.
Despite the agreement, not all residents in the city agree with the move to remove the bodies, Mighty990.com reported. One listener accused the city of attempting to “wipe out” the country’s history.
“Fine, move the statue, but the dead bodies?!? What kind of insanity is that?? Are we to assume the ghosts of these Confederate loyalists are just lying in wait for the opportune time to rise up and once again declare war??? I mean, if that’s the case, I guess they should be moved out of the U. S. But if not, I really don’t see a valid and logical reason to disturb the remains of American citizens,” another listener wrote on its Facebook page.
Robyn Walensky, the host of “Wake Up Memphis,” echoed the concern about the risk of forgetting the country’s history.
“Now we are not only taking down statues, but we’re moving graves,” she asked. “Wow – does this burn me up.”